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What are the highest-paying jobs in the medical field?

What are the highest paying jobs in the medical field?

The healthcare industry is known for offering jobs that pay high salaries, especially positions that involve working with patients. However, several jobs in the medical field offer competitive pay while having fewer education and licensing requirements than roles requiring medical school. Whether you've always dreamed of becoming a doctor in a particular specialization or you're newly entertaining the idea of working in the medical industry, here's a list of 15 of the highest-paying jobs in the medical field, along with information about their key duties.

15 of the highest-paying jobs in the medical field

Here are 15 jobs in the healthcare field offering higher-than-average salaries:

1. Prosthetist salary

A prosthetist is a healthcare professional who creates supportive and mobility devices for patients with disabilities or missing limbs. Their responsibilities include designing artificial limbs, fitting devices on patients, and developing and repairing the devices they design. The average annual salary for a prosthetist is $83,500 per year.

2. Diagnostic medical sonographer salary

Diagnostic medical sonographers have an important role in the medical field. They take ultrasound and sonogram images of patients' organs. These images help physicians and specialists diagnose medical issues, identify abnormalities, and create treatment plans. In terms of pay, diagnostic medical sonographers make an average of $84,500 per year.

3. Dental hygienist salary

Dental hygienists assist dentists during exams and dental procedures. They also have many responsibilities of their own, such as cleaning patients' teeth, probing patients' gums, and informing patients about their options for dental care. The average salary of a dental hygienist is $85,000 per year.

4. Nuclear medicine technologist salary

Nuclear medicine technologists treat patients who require radioactive medications and treatments. After prepping their patients with protective equipment to ensure that they aren't exposed to radiation, these technologists operate specialized equipment to administer the treatment. With an average salary of $85,300 per year, this is another high-paying job in the medical field that's also a unique specialization.

5. Registered nurse salary

If you've ever been to the doctor's office, you've likely interacted with a registered nurse. These professionals perform various duties in medical facilities, including taking patient vital signs, retrieving medical history data, and administering medications and treatments. Currently, registered nurses make an average of $89,000 per year, though many earn more than this by specializing in a particular area of medicine. For example, some registered nurses who enjoy working in different locations develop the skills to work as travel nurses, earning higher salaries once they're trained.

6. Audiologist salary

Audiologists are specialized doctors who work with patients with hearing issues. They also help patients with balance problems resulting from vertigo. Audiologists are responsible for diagnosing conditions in the ear and inner ear, developing and administering treatment plans, and recommending and fitting medical devices, such as hearing aids. The average salary for an audiologist in the United States is $89,500 per year.

7. Speech-language pathologist salary

If you enjoy working with people and communicating with patients, you might enjoy working as a speech-language pathologist. These professionals help patients with difficulty speaking or swallowing. They diagnose speech disorders and guide patients through therapy and treatment plans to improve their speaking ability. The average pay for this role is $89,500 per year.

8. Occupational therapist salary

Occupational therapists work with patients with mobility issues, most often stemming from significant injuries, disabilities, or extreme illnesses. By assisting with physical therapy exercises and recommending new ways of performing daily tasks, occupational therapists improve patients' quality of life and strength. On average, an occupational therapist earns $93,000 per year in the U.S.

"Whether you want to go into patient care or you're hoping to start your career on a quicker timeline, there are roles available offering exceptionally high salaries that will keep you comfortable."

9. Radiation therapist salary

Radiation therapists treat patients with cancer and other chronic medical conditions and work with oncologists and medical professionals to develop treatment plans. Since radiation therapists must have in-depth technical knowledge, such as how to use radiation equipment to treat tumors safely, they typically earn competitive pay. With an average salary of $98,500 per year, training to become a radiation therapist is a great way to ensure a strong earning potential.

10. Physician assistant salary

If you want to work closely with patients but begin working in the field faster than doctors, consider becoming a physician assistant. These professionals perform many similar duties to doctors, such as conducting physical exams, diagnosing conditions, and prescribing medications. They sometimes work under the supervision of licensed physicians. The national average salary of a physician assistant is around $125,500 per year.

11. Anesthesia technician salary

Anesthesia technicians ensure that the supplies and equipment for anesthetizing patients during surgery are stocked, sterilized, and ready to use. Their responsibilities include checking the levels in anesthesia tanks, sanitizing machines, and disassembling equipment for storage. Anesthesia technicians earn $125,500 per year on average.

12. Veterinarian salary

Veterinarians are important specialists in the medical industry who provide medical care to animals. They can have many duties, including administering medications to animals, physically examining their patients, and diagnosing medical conditions in zoo animals, pets, and rescues. If you love animals and want to earn a competitive salary, this job could be for you, as veterinarians earn an average of $129,000 per year.

13. Pharmacist salary

Pharmacists are healthcare professionals who dispense prescriptions for patients. They measure and prepare medications to fill prescriptions, discuss claims with insurance companies, and assist customers by providing information about their medications. As one of the most lucrative jobs in the medical field that doesn't involve patient care, pharmacists earn an average of $129,500 per year.

14. Optometrist salary

An optometrist is a medical doctor who specializes in treating conditions that affect patients' eyes. Their responsibilities include examining patients' eyes for abnormalities, testing patients' vision, and prescribing visual aids, such as glasses and contact lenses. With an average salary of $133,000 per year, optometry is a potentially lucrative medical specialty.

15. Podiatrist salary

Podiatrists specialize in treating medical issues with the ankles, feet, and calves. These professionals examine the parts and joints of the lower legs to diagnose injuries and conditions and create treatment plans that involve medication and orthotics. The average salary for a podiatrist is $158,000 per year.

These are only some of the highest-paying jobs in the medical field. There are many career paths to choose from. Whether you want to go into patient care or you're hoping to start your career on a quicker timeline, there are roles available offering exceptionally high salaries that will keep you comfortable. If you're looking for jobs in the medical field offering competitive salaries, create a profile on CareerBuilder so employers can find you. You can also stay connected with companies hiring for roles that match your skills and expertise.

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