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1 Healthier Communities, Diverse Challenges Within Occupations, Job SecurityJob Security, Competitive Wages, Training Opportunities, Flexible Work Schedules, Opportunities For Advancement, Change And Continuous Learning, The Satisfaction Of Helping Others, Stronger And, Competitive Wages, Training Opportunities, Flexible Work Schedules, Opportunities For Advancement, Diverse Challenges Health Careers They pay in so many ways! There are thousands of challenging careers available at all education levels. See inside to learn more! Visit or

2 Featured Careers There are thousands of careers available in the field of health care. This brochure highlights those careers that are currently in greatest demand. Nursing Duties: Registered Nurses (RN) provide the oversight of health care for vulnerable populations, which include the physically and mentally ill, the dying, children, adults and the elderly. RNs execute the medical regimens ordered by licensed practitioners such as physicians and nurse practitioners. They do this by assessing the physical, psychological, spiritual and behavioral needs of these individuals. They formulate plans to meet these needs, ensure the plans are put into action, and evaluate how the plans have worked. RNs ensure that care is documented and quality is maintained at all times. A key role is health education of patients and families. Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) assist the registered nurses and doctors by implementing plans that include helping individuals with activities of daily living (bathing, dressing and eating); obtaining data (temperatures, blood pressures and blood sugar levels); and administering medications. Working Conditions: Most nurses work in hospitals or nursing homes that have flexible schedules and good salaries and benefits. Nursing is a 24-hour a day, 7-day a week profession in these settings. Other settings are: in the home, in schools or in private industry. Nursing is a very physical profession with lifting, moving and transporting of patients. It is mentally and spiritually challenging to deal with patients and families in vulnerable situations that require empathy, patience and listening skills. Characteristics: Registered Nurses need to be critical thinkers, culturally sensitive, technologically efficient, dynamic, decision makers and compassionate individuals. Licensed Practical Nurses need to be hands-on, culturally sensitive and compassionate individuals. Both must demonstrate academic aptitude and an ability to communicate. Education: Diploma Program-Hospital based; a 2-3 year program; offer college credits toward a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Associate s Degree-Offered at junior or community colleges; two years; credits can be used toward a BSN Bachelor s of Science in Nursing (BSN)- Four year program offered at a university or college All graduates from these programs take the same licensure exam to become a Registered Nurse. Licensed Practical Nurses must complete a vocational training program or community college program in order to sit for the LPN exam.

3 Direct Care Workers Duties: Direct Care Workers assist older adults and persons with disabilities with daily activities such as dressing, grooming and mobility. Workers may also assist with meal preparation, housekeeping and companionship. These services are provided in community settings, clients homes, and residential settings such as assisted living or personal care and nursing homes. Working Conditions: Nursing homes, hospitals and other residential settings offer flexible work schedules. Since care is provided around the clock, some workers may work shifts that include nights, weekends and holidays. Workers in homebased settings may be attracted to the flexibility of scheduling and the opportunity to form closer relationships with clients. Direct care work can be a physically and emotionally demanding job, but many gain satisfaction from assisting those in need. Characteristics: Direct Care Workers should be responsible, mature and have the ability to adapt to challenging situations. Good communication skills and a desire to help people are also important. Education: Nurses Aides and Certified Home Health Aides must complete a minimum 75 hours of training and pass a competency evaluation. Training is offered in high schools, career and technical schools, vocational-technical centers, nursing facilities and community colleges. Personal Care and Home Care Workers are not currently required to obtain formal training or certification prior to starting work. However, most employers provide hours of on-the-job training.

4 Pharmacy Duties: Pharmacists are experts on the safe and effective use of medication. Not only do Pharmacists dispense drugs, they also counsel patients on their use, side effects and interactions. Today s Pharmacists are becoming more and more involved in disease-state management. Some Pharmacists are involved in compounding, where they combine and mix ingredients to form certain medications. The Pharmacist is a resource to physicians regarding effects of combining multiple medications. Pharmacy Technicians assist Pharmacists by helping prepare, price and label medications for customers. Most Pharmacists work in retail pharmacies, however, Pharmacists can be found in hospitals, nursing homes, managed care organizations, clinics and in government. Working Conditions: Often work in clean, well-lit pharmacies in the not-forprofit or retail environment. Evening, weekend and holiday shifts are common. Considerable time is spent standing and walking.

5 Characteristics: Both Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians should be organized, precise, reliable and have a strong desire to help others. A scientific and mathematical aptitude and background is essential. Good communication and interpersonal skills are important when dealing with the public. Education: Pharmacists must complete six years of postsecondary study, earn a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from an accredited facility and be licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. On-the-job training is common for Pharmacy Technicians, however, many employers prefer to hire technicians who have graduated from a formal training program. In addition, voluntary certification is available for qualified Pharmacy Technicians.

6 Occupational Title Total Annual Openings Nursing Licensed Practical Nurses 985 Registered Nurses 3,970 Direct Care Workers Home Health Aides 605 Nursing Aides, Orderlies & Attendants 1,720 Personal Care Aides 825 Pharmacy Pharmacists 490 Pharmacy Technicians 555 I Medical Imaging (Radiologic Technology) Cardiovascular Technologists/Technicians 110 Diagnostic Medical Sonographers 65 Nuclear Medicine Technologists 20 Radiation Therapists 15 Radiologic Technologists/Technicians 215 Respiratory Therapy Respiratory Therapists (Registered) 205 Clinical (Medical) Laboratory Sciences Medical/Clinical Laboratory Technologists 145 Medical/Clinical Laboratory Technicians 185 Professional Degree Completion of an academic program that usually requires at least 6 years of full-time schooling beyond high school, including a bachelor s degree. Bachelor s Degree Completion of a degree program that requires at least 4 years, but not more than 5 years, of full-time schooling beyond high school. Associate s Degree Completion of a degree program that requires at least 2 years of full-time schooling beyond high school. Diploma in Nursing Completion of an academic program that usually requires at least 2-3 years of study beyond high school. This certificate can be pursued either full or part time.

7 Hourly Wages* Entry Hourly Wages* Average Minimum Education Required $12.10 $16.71 Postsecondary career and technical training $17.33 $23.75 Diploma/Associate Degree $7.27 $9.11 Short-term on-the-job-training $8.50 $10.51 Short-term on-the-job-training $6.63 $9.03 Short-term on-the-job-training $28.21 $34.93 Professional Degree $7.52 $10.35 Moderate-term on-the-job-training $9.67 $16.29 Associate Degree $18.04 $22.64 Associate Degree $17.95 $22.95 Associate Degree $19.98 $27.18 Associate Degree $14.15 $18.59 Associate Degree $15.47 $19.69 Associate Degree or Bachelor Degree $14.88 $19.54 Bachelor Degree $11.02 $15.52 Associate Degree Postsecondary vocational training - Training gained through a vocational training program. Moderate-term on-the-job training - Basic tasks and skills are learned through a period of 1 to 12 months of combined on-the-job experience and information training. Short-term on-the-job training - Basic tasks and skills are learned through a short demonstration, or up to 1 month of combined on-the-job experience and instruction. * 2003 Hourly Wages

8 Medical Imaging (Radiologic Technology) Duties: Medical Imaging Technologists use invasive and non-invasive technology to produce images for diagnosis and treatment by physicians. They may take images using Ultrasound, X-ray, CT or MRI to visualize internal organs, bones or other structures. Working Conditions: Most Imaging Technologists work about 40 hours a week, although evening and weekend work may be required. Some are on-call for emergencies. Considerable time is spent standing and walking. Characteristics: Workers should be reliable and able to follow instructions. Mechanical aptitude is important as is the ability to adhere to safety procedures. Imaging Specialists must help with lifting and turning patients. Education: Completion of a two-year program either through a college or hospitalbased program is required for Radiologic Technologists. Associate or bachelor degrees are available through college programs. Additional formal education is required for advanced imaging specialties. Continuing education is required for all imaging professionals. Certification is required for Nuclear Medicine Technologists, Sonographers, Radiation Therapists and CT and MRI Technologists.

9 Respiratory Therapy Duties: Respiratory Therapists evaluate, treat and care for patients with heart and lung abnormalities. They also educate patients and families about the proper use of equipment and may draw blood or perform basic cardiopulmonary procedures, such as electrocardiograms and stress tests. Working Conditions: Respiratory Therapists generally work hours a week, although evening, weekend and holiday shifts are required in hospitals. Long periods of time are spent standing and walking between patient rooms. Characteristics: Respiratory Therapists need to be critical thinkers, dynamic, decision makers and should be sensitive to patient needs, pay close attention to details and work well as part of a team. The ability to follow instructions and adhere to safety procedures is vital. Mechanical ability and manual dexterity are needed to properly operate complex equipment. Education: Respiratory Therapists must have formal training and certification, including an associate s degree, to obtain an entry-level position. A four-year bachelor s degree program is available at certain educational facilities. All Respiratory Therapists in Pennsylvania must be legally credentialed by the Board of Medicine or the Board of Osteopathic Medicine.

10 Clinical (Medical) Laboratory Sciences Duties: Clinical Labratory Technologists perform medical and clinical laboratory testing that is used in the detection, diagnosis and treatment of diseases. They usually perform the more complex testing and occupy supervisory positions. Working Conditions: Work is often performed in clean, well-lit laboratories. Schedules vary with size and type of employer, although rotating shifts and evening, weekend or holiday hours are common. Personnel may be on-call for emergencies. Workers spend a considerable amount of time on their feet. Characteristics: Analytical judgment, attention to detail and the ability to work well under pressure are essential traits for medical laboratory workers. Manual dexterity, normal color vision and strong computer skills are important for medical testing. Education: Many Clinical Laboratory Scientists earn a bachelor s degree in medical technology or a life science. Technicians must earn an associate s degree or obtain training through the Armed Forces. Voluntary certification is available for all qualified medical laboratory personnel.

11 To help you on your way to a career in the health care field, or to learn more about a particular occupation, contact: or The Hospital & Healthsystem Association of PA Center for Workforce Information & Analysis PA Keyword: Labor Market Information PA Higher Education Assistance Agency Educational & Career Planning PA Higher Education Assistance Agency Career Videos

12 Pennsylvania Workforce Investment Board PA Center for Health Careers 901 North 7th Street, Suite 103 Harrisburg, PA Health Careers They pay in so many ways! There are thousands of challenging careers available at all education levels. or

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