What Distinguishes Allied Healthcare from Other Roles?

What Distinguishes Allied Healthcare from Other Roles?

The field of healthcare has many different facets. While many people think first of doctors and nurses when it comes to careers in medicine, allied healthcare offers many opportunities to work as a healthcare professional.

These positions can be filled with less stringent education and training. With this in mind, let’s take a look at what distinguishes allied healthcare professionals from other medical roles.

Who Are Allied Healthcare Professionals?

In the simplest terms, allied healthcare staff is made up of people who work alongside doctors and nurses to provide necessary patient care services. Remarkably, some 60% of jobs in medicine fall under the heading of allied healthcare. These professions usually don’t require a medical degree, which makes them especially attractive to recent high school graduates or people looking to change careers.

In fact, many allied healthcare professionals can get the training and certifications they need with short certification programs. These may also include two-year associate degrees, four-year degrees, or even on-the-job training.

What Allied Healthcare Professionals Do?

The role of allied healthcare staff is mainly supportive. These people work alongside doctors, nurses, dentists, and pharmacists in a wide variety of roles. Audiologists, clinical laboratory technologists and technicians, dental assistants, dental hygienists, and exercise physiologists are considered allied healthcare professionals.

Medical sonographers, cardiovascular technologists, and technicians, as well as nuclear medicine technologists, are also numbered among allied healthcare staff. Furthermore, athletic trainers, nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, nurse practitioners, and occupational therapists are also considered allied healthcare staff.

What Other Medical Professionals Do?

The responsibility to diagnose and treat illnesses falls to medical professionals such as doctors and dentists. Allied healthcare professionals collaborate with these medical professionals to provide care aligned with the treatment strategy prescribed.

On the other hand, the work of allied healthcare staff can also help medical professionals diagnose conditions. Tasks such as drawing blood,  operating x-ray equipment or MRI machines provide medical professionals with the data they need to make accurate assessments.

As perhaps is to be expected, medical professional careers require considerably more training and education than those of allied healthcare professionals. Some medical professions demand advanced degrees that can take up to 15 years to earn.

Where Do Allied Healthcare Professionals Work?

Allied healthcare staff opportunities exist anywhere healthcare services are offered. It can include doctor’s offices, elder care facilities, sports teams, schools and even cruise ships. Specific locations depend upon the fields of endeavor, education level, and experience required. There are also opportunities for traveling allied healthcare staff in many different cities around the country.

Training to Be An Allied Healthcare Professional

The educational background of allied healthcare professionals varies according to the specialty. For example, clinical laboratory technologists perform, collect, and process lab tests. Responsibilities include data analysis and blood sample matching.

A bachelor’s degree in life sciences, along with certification and licenses (in some cases), is needed to conduct this work. Meanwhile, pharmacy technicians who prepare and dispense medications can be employed with on-the-job training and a pharmacy tech certification, which can be earned in three to six months.

In Summary

So, what distinguishes allied healthcare professionals from other medical roles?

Medical professionals tend to fill one of three capacities: general medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy. The qualifications required to serve in these positions include extensive education in areas such as biology, pharmacology, and medical research. What’s more, specialties within these fields can demand as much as 15 years of secondary education.

Allied healthcare staff positions, while also serving a vital role in patient outcomes, usually require much less education to fill. In fact, some can be done with on-the-job training and completion of a three to six-month certification program. It can make allied healthcare a more accessible and more affordable way to pursue a career in medicine.

As you navigate your professional career, Wanderly can help you secure the best allied healthcare staff assignments available. With our platform, you can find your suitable agency. You can search for agencies on our site and connect with agency team members through their profiles. Before you sign up with an agency, you can chat personally with one or more of its recruiters to ask specific questions about your requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What are the four main categories of allied health professionals?

Allied health staff categories include primary care providers, health promotion, administrative professionals, rehabilitative professionals, and diagnostic professionals.

  1. Do allied health professions require medical degrees?

Requirements vary. You’ll need a two-year or a four-year college degree for some positions. Earning a high school diploma and the proper certifications are all you need for others.

  1. Why is allied health care a good career choice?

Training can be relatively quick, and there are many jobs available in a wide variety of fields. Some 60% of healthcare employment opportunities are in allied healthcare.

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