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Lowest Paid Professionals In Healthcare
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When you think about working in the healthcare industry, you may think about a job with an excellent income and fabulous benefits. Doctors, surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses and others are the most recognizable positions in this field, and they are often handsomely compensated for their education and expertise. While many healthcare workers regularly earn a comfortable six-digit income and do enjoy amazing benefits, the reality is that there are many other healthcare positions that do not have this luxury. In fact, these are some of the lowest paid professionals in this industry.
A dietary aide is a healthcare worker who is responsible for preparing healthy and nutritious meals for patients in a hospital setting. Many people have special dietary restrictions that must be carefully followed, so this position is critical to their health and well-being. However, these individuals typically earn less than $20,000 per year on average, and they most commonly work in a hospital setting.
Providing hospital patients with a safe, healthy and clean environment is vital to their overall well-being as well. There are many patients who unfortunately get an infection or even a life-threatening illness while in the hospital, and this is a testament to the importance of a housekeeper’s position. Housekeepers or janitorial staff keep medical settings sanitized for the health of patients as well as staff members. These professionals, however, typically earn less than $23,000 per year for a full-time position.
Any time a new patient must be checked into a hospital or clinic setting, he or she meets with an admitting clerk. This is the person who obtains preliminary medical information about the patient as well as their contact information and insurance data. An alternative to being an admitting clerk in a hospital setting is to be a receptionist in a medical office. These administrative professionals may earn between $20,000 and $30,000 per year, and there are often part-time as well as full-time positions available around the clock in this area of healthcare.
Home Health Aide
While some patients will spend time recovering or resting in a hospital setting, others prefer to recuperate at home. In some cases, elderly or disabled patients may also need care at home. The role of a home health aide is to provide assistant with basic living functions so that the patient can enjoy a comfortable quality of life. These professionals may travel to multiple houses each day, or they may work in a single home to care for the same patient on a daily basis. The average income for this position is approximately $25,000 per year.
In long-term care facilities, it is necessary for patients to be entertained regularly and to remain active. An activity aide is responsible for setting up and running programs related to socialization, nutrition education, exercise or fitness and more. This position typically generates annual income of less than $23,000 per year.
While a pharmacist may be well-compensated in many work environments, a pharmacy aide usually is not. This position is responsible for assisting the pharmacist with the process of dispensing medication to the appropriate individuals, and the individual may work in a retail store, a hospital or another setting. This professional typically earns approximately $25,000 per year.
The salary of a psychiatric nurse and other similar nursing professions for an LVN or RN is rather high, but a nursing assistant is one of the lower paid positions in the industry. This professional may be responsible for assisting nurses with some of their more menial or non-medical tasks, and they earn less than $26,000 per year in most work environments.
Physical Therapy Aide
Physical therapy is an important aspect of recovery after a serious illness or an injury. While a physical therapist may facilitate the therapy program and may work actively with the patient, the aid performs important functions in an assistant role. This professional may earn less than $26,000 per year in most cases.
A dental assistant is also known as a hygienist. This is a trained professional who works hands-on with dental patients with hygiene tasks, cleaning and more. The dental assistant may also work directly with the dentist while he or she is performing more invasive procedures. This professional earns approximately $30,000 per year.
A phlebotomist is a professional who typically has a high school diploma and a special certificate rather than a college degree. The role of this position is to draw blood that is being used for samples. In some cases, this professional may also ensure that other types of lab samples, such as urine, are dispatched to the lab for testing. This professional works hands-on with patients in a very short-term capacity, and he or she may earn less than $25,000 per year.
While a few of these positions require an associate’s degree, many of them only require a special certificate or on-the-job training. They provide individuals with an exceptional way to work in the medical field without having to attend a lengthy program. However, in many cases, those who are trying to become a doctor, a nurse or another more advanced profession in this field will work in one of these positions while working their way through a higher education program. Keep in mind that salary or income varies based on the location of the job, the training of the individual and many other factors.
About the Author
Jennifer Clarke is a financial advisor and a blogger with a great interest for the healthcare industry. She is now a contributing editor to Healthcaresalariesguide.com where she shares her insights.