Rise in Retirees: How More Seniors Affects Healthcare Careers
The aging of the American population is expected to make dramatic changes in a number of aspects of the society. Baby Boomers, people who were born between 1946 and 1964, will contribute huge numbers to the number of elderly over the coming decades. This population will have increasing healthcare needs that will provide many new career opportunities.
Expanded Careers in Nursing
The growing number of people utilizing healthcare services is already straining the number of workers in the nursing profession. This trend is expected to continue as the U.S. population ages, and many more nurses will be needed in coming years. Advanced practice nurses, in particular, will be needed. These are nursing graduates who have continued their education in specialized areas of nursing, such as cardiac care, pediatrics, oncology and renal care. The shortage of physicians is likely to expand the responsibilities of nurse practitioners, as well, which will be a growing field in upcoming years.
Joint replacement surgery, post-stroke rehabilitation and other medical conditions will require the increased use of workers trained in physical therapy, speech-language therapy, occupational therapy and other services. Advanced degrees in these fields will be required to design and oversee therapeutic treatments for a wide range of health conditions.
Gerontology, the field of healthcare that deals with the special needs of aging individuals, will take a much more prominent position in treatment protocols. The aged often have different needs than younger patients and may have more difficulty getting access to and implementing treatment services that can dramatically impact their state of health. Both private facilities and public agencies will require workers trained in this specialized field to maximize services to this population. Individuals with degrees such as a Master of Aging Services Management and Master of Arts in Gerontology will help to administer programs in a variety of settings to aid this population. You can even find USC masters in aging online if you need a maximum flexibility in your schedule.
The development of a broad range of medications to manage medical conditions in the elderly has made a significant difference in both longevity and quality of life. As pharmaceutical companies continue to expand the number of drugs available to treat hypertension, cardiac conditions, cancer, respiratory diseases and renal problems, highly skilled workers with special training in medication management will be needed, for both institutional care and home-health services.
An aging population will require many new services that will help to improve their quality of life in later years. Individuals who have the training necessary to fill these new positions will benefit with a variety of new opportunities. The US demographic is distinctly trending to a large population of senior and retired citizens, and with the country’s large population base, we can expect a career in aging services to remain a stable and increasingly in-demand industry for decades to come.
About the author: A recent college graduate from University of San Francisco, Anica loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.
With the rise in seniors, there will be a higher need for those trained in Pastoral Thanatology. A Pastoral Thanatology Certification can help train qualified professionals in the necessary steps to care for the elderly in mind, soul and body.