You don’t need to spend years in medical school to have a rewarding career in healthcare. With the right training, you can be prepared to enter the field in less than two years. And you could have a variety of career paths to choose from—some that involve direct patient care and others that keep things running behind the scenes. Here are a few healthcare certificate programs that provide you with options and opportunities:
As a Medical Assistant, you might work at the front of a health facility, directly with patients, or a combination of both. When you aren’t in the front office handling administrative duties, you will probably be in the exam room, preparing patients for exams and helping the physician during routine checkups or procedures. A Certificate in Medical Assistant program will prepare you for both sides of a medical practice. In addition to learning how to receive patients and process billing, you will learn how to take vitals, collect specimens, and make patients feel at ease. You’ll learn CPR, what to do in emergencies, and how to help during minor surgical procedures. Most programs will even provide you with real-world experience in an externship. And your certificate can set you up for some next steps including an associate or bachelor’s degree.
Step out of the physician’s practice and into a dentist’s office and consider the role of a dental assistant. As with medical assisting, as a dental assistant, you can perform both clinical and administrative duties. Your Certificate in Dental Assisting program will teach you about oral care and chairside assistance. You’ll become familiar with all the dental tools, practices, procedures, and rules. Infection control and patient safety will be especially important for you to learn. You’ll also learn about dental science, orthodontics, and how to handle dental emergencies. And you’ll be taught about preventative dentistry, so you can communicate to patients how they should properly take care of their teeth. Be sure to ask if your program includes an externship so you can get some hands-on experience.
Health Unit Coordinator
You might not be familiar with health unit coordinators, but they play a key role in the delivery of medical care. As a health unit coordinator, you work behind the scenes to make sure that hospital units and healthcare facilities run efficiently. You communicate with physicians, staff, patients, and their families. You help patients feel safe and appointments run smoothly. A Certificate in Health Unit Coordinator program will introduce you to hospital unit management, health and safety procedures, and basic patient care. You’ll learn how to manage health records and discover the importance of ethics and confidentiality in health care. Your program will help you hone your communication skills and patient empathy. And you may be able to learn it all online!
Did you know that you can help with patient care even outside of the hospital? That’s by helping them access their medication. As a pharmacy technician, you assist a pharmacist by measuring out doses, filling prescriptions, and ordering supplies when needed. Although you might work in a healthcare facility, most pharmacy technicians actually work in retail spaces. A Certificate in Pharmacy Technician program will teach you the skills of the trade and let you know what to expect from the job. It should even give you the opportunity to experience real-world scenarios on an externship. In class, labs, and on site, you’ll learn about pharmacy calculations, drug distribution systems, preparation of sterile dosage forms, and general pharmacy operations. You’ll also find out how important good customer service is and the critical need for accuracy as a pharmacy technician.
If you want a career that puts your skills in demand, consider phlebotomy. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for phlebotomists is expected to grow rapidly over the next decade. As a phlebotomist, you collect blood and other specimens from patients. You might work in a hospital, lab, or blood bank. Because you’ll be focused so specifically on blood draws and specimen collection, you can usually earn a Diploma in Phlebotomy even more quickly than many other healthcare credentials. In as few as 10 weeks, you could learn how to properly collect samples through capillary sticks and a process called venipuncture. You’ll also learn how to label specimens, handle them safely, and how to set up and clean up between patients.
Are you ready to enroll in a healthcare program? Contact Charter College today. You’ll learn from industry professionals who have years of experience, and who want to help you succeed. Classes are enrolling now. Call 888-200-9942 or fill out the form to learn more.