Public health professionals work to keep the population healthy and elevate the health standards of the communities. All their policies, procedures, and systems are developed to keep the communities safe and healthy.
When considering public health as a career, you must consider its advantages. Though any career you choose in healthcare can be rewarding and reliable, if you are inclined to choose public health as your career or transition to public health from your existing healthcare, you must know the following aspects about this career.
- Satisfy your interest in statistics and data-based facts
Public health professionals make decisions based on facts and data.
As a professional, you will track hot spots with a major threat of infectious diseases and rare conditions. You cannot make accurate decisions if you are not precise in your data collection and analysis. Therefore, an interest in data and statistics is a prerequisite for this profession.
If you are good at statistics and can implement the data into practice, a career in public health must be your choice.
You will also need exceptional skills in mathematics and the ability to read charts and graphs to show how the diseases are progressing and spreading across communities.
- Have flexible educational requirements
You have flexible educational requirements to work as a public health professional.
Often people start their careers with a bachelor’s degree. However, there is no denying that public health professionals with a master’s degree (MPH) are more preferred.
The number of MPH public health jobs is much more than the number of opportunities you have with a bachelor’s degree. So, if you already have a bachelor’s degree in public health, it is better to have a master’s degree as soon as possible.
Once you have an MPH degree, your demand in the field can increase many times.
- Public health degree can be earned in a dual degree program
If you opt for a career in public health, you can choose a dual degree program. A double degree allows you to have expertise in two fields. Besides, such a program increases your skills.
For instance, if you want to work in public health but at the same time you want to work in the lab to research diseases, you can pair your public health degree with a course in Biology. Hence, a dual degree program helps you apply a multidisciplinary approach to your work in the field.
- Public health is a growing field
One of the important reasons for opting for this field is that it is a growing field. With new diseases engulfing the communities, the demand for health professionals is growing every year.
The covid-19 pandemic has further brought public health professionals under the limelight.
The public health crisis brought forward by the pandemic has shown that there is a perpetual shortage of healthcare professionals due to a retiring and aging population. So, anyone with a public health degree has the potential to get the job as soon as getting the required qualification.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) claims that the job outlook of public health professionals shows a growth rate of 17% for the period from 2020 to 2030—faster than the industry average.
- Job security
The growth outlook of this career is promising. A higher demand shows that it is less likely that people will be terminated from their jobs or graduates will stay unemployed after having a professional degree in public health.
So, anyone coming into the fold of this career can rest assured about the inherent job security of their career.
- Make a difference in the world
Public health professionals engage in work that targets the betterment of larger communities. Their work ensures that communities live healthier lives; therefore, they can make a difference in the world.
Major health entities such as the World Health Organization employ public health professionals worldwide to spread awareness about infectious diseases, preventive measures, and cures.
- Higher opportunity for career advancement
Public health professionals often get multiple chances to advance in their careers while remaining within their work domain. One way to grow in public health career is by getting a higher qualification.
Higher education programs allow the candidates to specialize in specific areas in public health and dispense higher-responsibility roles.
Specialization makes you more competitive when pursuing a job in this career. In short, your specialization can help you get more job offers, promotions, and other career advancement opportunities.
Moreover, with a higher degree, you can also assume management roles and have a meaningful say regarding the design and implementation of public health programs.
- Work in various sectors
The job of public health professionals is not limited to working in the public sector only. Apart from working in government institutions and departments, you can work in academia.
A master’s or doctoral degree in public health allows you to work in universities and colleges, educate the cohort of aspiring candidates and prepare them for working in the field. Besides academia, you can get a job in the private sector and work in hospitals and health organizations.
Healthcare professionals often get job offers from non-profit organizations. Working in the non-profit sector may not give a spike to your bank account. Still, it allows you to travel, meet people worldwide and gain a multicultural experience.
As part of your job assignment, you might be working in the far-flung communities of African content. Or you get an assignment to gauge the spread of contagious diseases in Asia.
- Higher earning potential
Public health professionals perform a very meaningful job. Therefore, they often get a good reward for their work through competitive salaries.
According to BLS, public health professionals earn a median salary of $60,600 annually. However, as of 2022, many professionals are making a higher figure of as much as $ 102,480.
Public health professionals are becoming indispensable for the development of communities. They ensure a healthy living environment for the public, take measures to control the spread of disease, and plan healthcare programs to increase the healthcare standards of the communities.
Apart from their meaningful work, public health professionals also earn a good yearly income and get various career development opportunities.