How to Get a Job in the Medical Field Without 12 Years of College

Girl is complaining of headaches

Does getting into the medical field interest you, but you’re not interested in the years it takes to complete schooling or the school debt you will be left with to become a doctor. Fortunately, becoming a physician is not the only occupation in the medical field that you can find a job in. 

Below are other jobs in the medical field you could get a job in that don’t require 12 years of college.

Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy technicians assist the pharmacist by preparing prescription medication for customers. They also sometime will review and process prescription requests from doctor’s offices. Sometimes they may mix medications, organize drugs, and do an inventory of stock. A pharmacy technician helps the pharmacist fill prescriptions and works under the direct supervision and direction of the pharmacist. To become a pharmacy technician, you need to complete a certificate or associate degree in pharmacy technician training from an accredited school. A salary for a pharmacy tech varies based on areas of expertise, experience level, education, and certifications. The median annual wage begins at $31, 750 to $46,980 yearly.

Clinical Lab Technician

A clinical lab technician work behind the scenes, when a physician orders tests for a patient, a clinical lab tech prepares and performs those tests to help detect diseases or abnormalities. Clinical lab technicians examine blood, body fluids, tissues, and cells. If you were right in math and science and paid close attention to detail than a clinical lab technician might be the right career choice for you. Lab technicians work in hospitals, doctors’ offices, and laboratories. To become a clinical lab technician, you need to earn an associate degree. On average, lab technicians can make a salary of $51,770 yearly. 

Registered Nurse

Registered Nurses (RNs) are found in all areas of the health area. Registered Nurses perform a variety of jobs a day, such as evaluate and record patient symptoms, help doctors during exams and surgeries, teach patients about self-care and healthy habits, lab work, review patient treatment plans and measure progress, and act as a supervisor to some nurses. The job duties of RNs varies depending on the environment they work are working in. For example, in hospitals, RNs are dealing with more fast-paced situations with irregular hours, whereas if an RN works in a doctor’s office, they typically will work a 40-hour week and work closely with patients. To become a registered nurse, you are required to get an associate degree as a minimum requirement and pass a national exam. An average salary for a registered nurse is $70,000 per year. 

Speech-Language Pathologist

A speech-language pathologist treats people of any age who are having trouble communicating or swallowing. The problems that speech-language pathologists see can stem from cognitive, physical, or social disorders, and pathologists must draw on research from multiple scientific fields plus develop skills in counseling. To become a speech-language pathologist, you require a master’s degree. To enter a relevant graduate program, you must take a Graduate Record Examinations Test and prerequisite science courses. The average yearly salary for a speech-language pathologist is $76,610. 

Nurse Practitioner

Nurse practitioners (NPs) share similar duties and authorities as physicians. NPs are advanced registered nurses and are trained to assess patients needs, order and interpret diagnostic and laboratory tests, diagnose disease, formulate, and prescribe treatment plans. Like physicians, nurse practitioners must specialize in graduate school in areas like primary, family, or acute care. Nurse practitioners need a master’s degree that can take four-plus years. The average yearly salary for a nurse practitioner is $103, 880 per year. 

Final Thoughts

Many careers are heavily involved in helping people in the healthcare and medical field. These careers are as rewarding as a doctor, and you do not have to be in school for 12 plus years of your life. Most jobs require a 2 to 4-year degree, and then you can apply to a career in your field of choice.