What Programs do Healthcare Vocational Schools Offer?
There are a variety of options available for learning a trade in the healthcare field. Some healthcare trade schools specialize in one particular field, such as nursing. Other vocational schools are attached to a larger medical trade school within a hospital, and offer a range of healthcare programs. Most require high school courses in math, English, biology and chemistry; the more technical healthcare programs, such as sonography, may require some instruction in physics or other specialized subjects. The ability to get along with people is also an essential part of most healthcare careers.
The typical length of study at a healthcare vocational school varies considerably, depending on what you want to learn. A bachelor's degree in nursing might take four years; by contrast, a dental hygienist may complete a one- or two-year healthcare program leading to a certificate or associate's degree. There are certain healthcare professions that require licensure and regular updates, retraining and exams. Other healthcare professions are less strict and licensure requirements vary by state. Most healthcare trade schools are campus-based, to allow proper hands-on experience and training. Still, there are some core nursing programs available online.
Healthcare Career Opportunities
There are community clinics all over the United States that need qualified staff. However, hospitals provide 40% of healthcare jobs, even though they only make up 2% of healthcare establishments. Large cities have the most opportunities, as do the states of California, New York, Florida, Texas and Pennsylvania. Pay is directly related to the amount of technical school training and skill required. According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics of May 2011 Registered nurses might earn $31.71 an hour; dental assistants may earn half that. As the population ages, there will likely be more demand for those involved with age-related healthcare, including specialist diabetes nursing, geriatric nursing, physical therapy and renal technology. Your education cannot guarantee job security or wages, but high demand makes employment very likely.