Healthcare Career Trends: Past, Present and Future
It’s easy to tell that the healthcare job market has changed throughout the years. Gone were the days of the doctor-nurse dichotomy. Now, we have medical billers, coders, transcriptionists, pharmacy technicians and so on—new jobs created from an increased demand for healthcare in the country. Let’s take a look at what experts have found out about the career trend in the past decade, and the factors that influenced it. What Happened in the Past Decade Healthcare utilization rates, according to the CDC’s paper Health Care in America: Trends in Utilization, can indicate how services shift from one healthcare provider to another. In some ways, this shift also tell how much healthcare has changed in the past decade. According to the paper, despite changes in healthcare system delivery, aging population, and health care incentives, visits to hospitals, physician’s offices and emergency departments did not experience an overall increase nor decrease from 1990 to 2000. On the other hand, visits to hospital outpatient branches per 1,000 persons have increased by 29 percent from 1992 to 2000, which explains a renewed focus of hospitals on expanding outpatient service offerings. The decline in hospitalization rates however has been attributed to the increasing presence of Medicare and Medicaid programs, providers, insurance holders, employers, increase in technological and scientific equipment, and ambulatory healthcare providers and community and nursing homes. Current Job Outlook Jeffrey Young of the Huffington Post reports that based on Bureau of Labor Statistics data, 290,000 jobs (out of 1.9 million jobs across industries) have been added in November 2012 for the healthcare sector alone. Young noted that the upward trend in employment in the healthcare industry was brought on by increased need of hospitals, nursing homes, and outpatient clinics for manpower. Where the Industry’s is Going According to Ten 10-Year Trends for the Future of Healthcare: Implications for Academic Health Centers, a paper published in the Oschner Journal, the assumption that patient care in Academic Health Centers (AHCs) has decreased in recent times, as an example, has pushed AHCs to become more efficient, and more productive in terms of patient care and research. And with the US healthcare system evolving as a response to such challenges, improvements in the industry as a whole are going to follow suit. The article also said that areas where an increase in trends and needless to say costs, include the following: 1. patients; 2. technology; 3. information; 4. focusing on the patient as the ultimate consumer; 5. development of patient care delivery model; 6. innovation to maintain one’s competitive edge; 7. Increased costs; 8. Increased insured patients; 9. Reduced payment to providers; and finally, 10. A push for a new healthcare system. Clearly, these areas present a rosy picture for the industry, especially its career market, in general.