New Brookings Institute Research: 3.8 billion jobs in 10 Healthcare Occupations

Med Pro Group iStock_000022514360XSmallNewly released research from The Brookings Institute outlines 10 healthcare occupations that require less than a bachelor’s degree and make up 3.8 million, or nearly half, of the total healthcare workforce.

Reading the entire report is worth your time to learn more about possible jobs to target, earnings potential and long term career advancement. Download the report here.

Top 10 Occupations

Appendix A of the report lists the 10 occupations, which correspond to the Department of Labor Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) codes. The body of the report outlines some of the specific career advancement possibilities, realities and barriers.

Several of the 10 actually include multiple job titles ranging from Registered Nurse and EMT to CNA and Home Health Aids. A number of diagnostic, laboratory and health practitioner support technicians are also included.

Earnings and Career Advancement

Earnings vary widely and increased earning potential “largely tracks education”. This means that gaining more advanced skills, certification and education is required to take advantage of many opportunities for upward career mobility. “The largest job growth was among lower-paying occupations and only registered nurses experienced real earnings growth” in the decade of statistics used in the study. “

Key Takeaways

  1. No job or industry provides an automatic path to long term career success. Targeting healthcare employers is a common strategy that has merit, but does not guarantee a living wage or upward career mobility.
  2. Education and training is especially important in healthcare fields no matter the clients’ initial professional qualifications or lack of them.  One caveat.  Beware of expensive for-profit training options that can be relatively quick, but also extremely expensive and not always worth the resulting earning potential.  Community college or Workforce Commission programs are often a more affordable option.
  3. Job development efforts with healthcare employers can yield diverse opportunities for clients at many skill levels. Multiple strategies, job readiness and interview preparation will also be required for success.


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