For many people, a career in health care is just as much an avocation as a vocation . . . many have felt since they were very young that a career in the medical field is something they’ve been called to do.
Helping people, providing care in a one-one-one manner, and interacting with the technology that makes modern health care capable of successfully diagnosing and treating injuries, illnesses and a number of medical conditions, makes the field both challenging and rewarding.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are going to be 2.8 million health care jobs created in the next few years, an increase of 26%. When you compare that to the average for all industries, which is a 16% increase, it is clear that the medical field will be growing much faster than almost any other industry. Health care currently boasts 9 out of the 20 occupations projected to grow most quickly within the next decade.
Much of the sustained growth in health care jobs is due to aging baby boomers and because people are living longer in general. And they will require more care. Coupled with this population growth is an increase in the use of innovative medical technology for intensive diagnosis and treatment, which will also require trained personnel to operate the equipment. Not all of this growth is limited to hospitals or large clinical sites. You could work in rehabilitation, health and fitness, wellness, imaging technology, home care, nutrition, new diagnostic services, or prevention, to name a few. Health care is being provided in many different ways and in different environments than ever before.
Eastern Iowa Community Colleges have students covered with programs in many areas including Nursing, Practical Nursing, Certified Nursing Assistant, Radiology Technology (Xray), Diagnostic Sonography (ultrasound), Electroneurodiagnostic Technology (END), Surgical Technology, Dental Assisting, Emergency Medical Services, Respiratory Care, Health Information Technology, Cancer Information Management and a wide range of shorter term training in areas like Home Care Aide, Pharmacy Technician, Phlebotomy Technician and Medical Billing and Coding. Students can also begin their studies at EICC in areas like pre-Med and pre-Chiropractic before transferring to a four year school.
Given this balance of degree-based programs and short-term certificate training, EICC can meet the needs of many students looking to prepare for a health care degree.
Careers in Health Care
The dental assistant performs a wide range of tasks requiring both interpersonal and technical skills. Dental assistants help the dentist at chairside and also perform functions such as polishing teeth, taking and developing dental radiographs, mixing materials and sterilizing instruments.
Diagnostic Medical/Cardiac Sonographer
Diagnostic Medical Sonography is a program that prepares individuals who under the supervision of physicians utilize medical ultrasound techniques to gather sonographic data used to diagnose a variety of conditions and diseases.
Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographers create pictures of the human heart using high frequency sound waves.
Emergency Medical Technician/Paramedic
Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics care for the sick or injured in emergency medical settings. People’s lives often depend on their quick reaction and competent care. EMTs and paramedics respond to emergency calls, performing medical services and transporting patients to medical facilities.
Registered nurses (RNs) provide and coordinate patient care, educate patients and the public about various health conditions, and provide advice and emotional support to patients and their family members.
The Practical nurse cares for the sick, injured, convalescent, and disabled, under the supervision of physicians and registered nurses.
Surgical technologists work under the supervision of a surgeon to facilitate the safe and effective conduct of invasive surgical procedures, ensuring that the operating room is safe, that equipment functions properly, and that the operative procedure is conducted under conditions that maximize patient safety.
X-ray technologists use radiation to make images of internal organs of the body, which aid radiologists in diagnosing a patient’s illness or injury. Under the supervision of the radiologist, the technologist positions patients and exposes the affected area of the body to prescribed doses of radiation.
Electroneurodiagnostic Technology is the scientific field devoted to the recording and study of electrical activity of the brain and nervous system. Used for medical evaluation and research, it includes procedures that assess the function of the nervous system. Technologists record electrical activity arising from the brain, spinal cord, peripheral nerves, or somatosensory systems using a variety of techniques and equipment.
Working closely with physicians and other health care professionals, respiratory therapists care for patients with respiratory and cardiovascular conditions.
Health Information Technology/Informatics
Health Information technicians are the individuals who compile the data for medical-related agencies. More importantly, they determine specifically how that data is compiled and reported to insurance companies, government agencies and others for reimbursement, research, and quality monitoring.
Cancer Information Management
Cancer Information Management prepares you for a career working in hospital-based cancer registries or population-based, central registries. Cancer registration is the basic method by which information about the incidence, type, extent of disease at time of diagnosis, treatment methods used and survival of patients with cancer is systematically collected.
SHORT TERM HEALTH CARE TRAINING PROGRAMS
Home Care Aide/Medication Aide
Home health aides help people who are disabled, chronically ill, or cognitively impaired. They often help older adults who need assistance.
Certified Nursing Assistant
Nursing assistants help provide basic care for patients in hospitals and residents of long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes.
Renal Dialysis Technician
Under the supervision of physicians and registered nurses, Dialysis technicians operate kidney dialysis machines, prepare dialyzer reprocessing and delivery systems as well as maintain and repair equipment.
Fitness trainers and instructors lead, instruct, and motivate individuals or groups in exercise activities, including cardiovascular exercise (exercises for the heart and blood system), strength training, and stretching.
Phlebotomists draw blood for tests, transfusions, research, or blood donations. Some explain their work to patients and provide assistance when patients have adverse reactions after their blood is drawn.
Pharmacy technicians help licensed pharmacists dispense prescription medication to customers or health professionals.
Medical transcriptionists listen to voice recordings that physicians and other health care professionals make and convert them into written reports. They may also review and edit medical documents created using speech recognition technology. Transcriptionists interpret medical terminology and abbreviations in preparing patients’ medical histories, discharge summaries, and other documents.
Scott Community College Launches New Sonography Program
Scott Community College (SCC), one of the Eastern Iowa Community Colleges, recently introduced Sonography (sometimes better known as “ultrasound”) as its newest program. The program includes two degree options: Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Diagnostic Cardiac Sonography.
“We are very excited to introduce the Sonography program to our area,” says SCC President Teresa Paper. “We are confident that demand will be high and, in fact, there are already a number of students who started the program with our spring semester.”
“Sonography uses high frequency sound waves (ultrasound) to produce dynamic images of many parts of the body,” explains Jodi McGivern, RDMT, RVT, program director.
Both Medical and Cardiac Sonography are two-year Associate in Applied Science Degree programs. Generally, students spend most of their time in hands-on work at hospitals and clinics throughout the area, explains Jodi.
According to the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, diagnostic medical sonographers make from $40,000 to more than $70,000 per year. Employment in these healthcare settings is projected to increase because of a shift toward outpatient care whenever possible.
The Sonography programs have been officially approved by the Eastern Iowa Community Colleges Board of Trustees and the state of Iowa.
For more information call 1-888-336-3907 or visit online at www.eicc.edu/sonography