6 of the Highest Paying Healthcare Jobs

Did you know that the median medical school debt for 2018 graduates was $195,000?

While this may seem like an obscene amount of money, the good news is, most students are able to pay off their debt quickly after landing high-paying jobs.

We all know that you shouldn’t enter the medical field if you’re just in it for the money. But, knowing how much money you’re going to make can help guide your future decisions.

So, which healthcare jobs pay the most?

Check out this guide to discover the highest-paying healthcare jobs.

1. Physicians and Surgeons

It should come as no surprise that physicians and surgeons make the most money out of any healthcare profession. After all, to become a physician or surgeon, you must do a decade or more of schooling.

However, how much you make as a physician or surgeon can vary widely depending on your specialty. For example, if you choose to specialize in anesthesiology, you can expect to make close to $300,000 per year. But, if you specialize in pediatrics, you can expect to make closer to $150,000 per year. Of course, $150,000 is still a very good salary, but it’s worth knowing that there’s quite a gap between the highest-paid physicians and the lowest paid physicians.

Because surgery is such a demanding field, surgeons tend to be compensated very well across the field. On average, surgeons make around $250,000 per year. However, this can vary slightly depending on your specialty and location.

2. Orthodontist

When you need braces, you’ll go see an orthodontist.

Orthodontists primarily focus on issues with crooked teeth and improper bites. They examine the jaws and mouths of patients in order to put together an orthodontic treatment plan that will help patients perfect their smiles.

In terms of credentials, orthodontists are basically dentists with more education. That is, in order to become an orthodontist, one must first go to dentistry school. So, this means that all orthodontists are also dentists.

To become an orthodontist, you must first earn an undergraduate degree, preferably in a science-related field. Then, you’ll go on to dentistry school, which lasts four years. After this, you’ll need an additional two to three years of specialized training to become an orthodontist. After completing an orthodontic residency, you must then pass a written exam in order to practice as an orthodontist.

As an orthodontist, you can expect to make close to $200,000 a year.

4. Dentist

While orthodontists make slightly more money than dentists, you can still earn a very good salary in this career field.

In 2018, dentists earned an average of $175,850. And, the job growth rate in this field is quite high, as over 100,000 jobs are expected to open up through 2028. As we mentioned earlier, you will need to complete an undergrad degree as well as dentistry school in order to become a dentist.

3. Optometrist

If helping people achieve perfect vision instead of perfect teeth sounds more like your calling, then you may want to consider a career as an optometrist.

Optometrists examine and treat visual problems. They also manage any injuries or diseases related to the eye. If you’ve ever been fit for contact lenses or glasses, then you’ve been to an optometrist.

In order to become an optometrist, you don’t need to go to medical school. However, you do need to earn a doctorate’s degree in optometry, which usually takes four years. The average salary for an optometrist is $125,000.

5. Nurse Midwife

Nursing is an extremely demanding career. And unfortunately, many nurses aren’t fairly compensated for all of their hard work.

Luckily, there are some nursing fields where the pay more closely matches the demands of the job. One such career is that of a nurse-midwife. When most people think of a nurse-midwife, they think of a woman in long robes giving herbal medicines to a birthing mother.

However, this is an outdated depiction of nurse midwives, as becoming a certified nurse-midwife takes a lot of hard work and schooling.

To become a certified nurse-midwife, you must first obtain a bachelor’s degree in nursing and then obtain licensure as a registered nurse. Then, when working as an RN, you’ll want to pursue a specialization in neonatal care. After gaining some experience as an RN, you’ll then need to enter either a Master of Science in Nursing Program or a Doctor of Nursing Practice program with a specialty in nurse-midwifery.

Your work will involve providing both gynecological and neonatal care to women and families. The average salary for a nurse-midwife is a little over $109,000.

6. Nurse Practitioner

If being around babies doesn’t sound like a career for you, then you may want to consider a career as a nurse practitioner.

As a nurse practitioner, you’ll take on additional responsibilities when it comes to administering care to patients that RNs cannot fulfill. Nurse practitioners can examine patients, diagnose illnesses, prescribe medicine, and provide treatment, much like physicians do.

This is a great career for anyone who wants to be challenged further as a nurse and is interested in taking on many of the same responsibilities as a physician. The average salary for a nurse practitioner is a little over $107,000.

After you become a nurse practitioner, you may want to even consider climbing the ladder further and becoming a healthcare executive. You can learn more about this through the healthcare executive search.

Highest Paying Healthcare Jobs: Which One is for You?

As you can see, there are a lot of exciting and high-paying healthcare jobs out there. Now, all you need to do is decide which career is right for you and then start pursuing your dreams!

Before you know it, you’ll be working a job you love and making great money doing so.

If you liked this article, be sure to check back in with our blog for more career-related tips and tricks.


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