COVID-19 Advice for the JCU Community - Last updated: 8 June 2022, 12pm (AEST)

Planning for your future Careers in health

Careers in health and medicine

When you think of careers in medicine you probably think doctors and nurses working in a hospital, but the healthcare industry has so many career opportunities.

Did you know that speech pathologists help professional singers perform at their best? Or that physiotherapists are on-hand for all the top sports teams and athletes around the world?

With a career in healthcare you could cure diseases, ease someone's pain, or even research new discoveries. Have a look at the different options below to see where you could use your skills and interests to help people.

Midwives not only deliver babies - they manage care for women and their babies before, during and after childbirth.

Midwives help mothers and babies stay safe and healthy by monitoring, ordering tests and handling emergency situations.

Midwives study midwifery to work in hospitals, birthing centres and in the community.

Exercise physiologists help patients get fitter and treat people with medical conditions through exercise.

Exercise physiologists work with people who have heart disease, cancer or issues such as arthritis.

They provide patients with coaching, health education, and physical rehabilitation so they can live their lives moving freely and happily.

Doctors diagnose and treat people who are suffering from diseases and injuries.

Doctors can specialise in areas such as emergency medicine, surgery, cancer, psychiatry or general practice (being a GP).

Doctors can work in hospitals, clinics, and out in the community. Some doctors travel great distances in small planes or helicopters to help people remote areas.

Medical researchers train in biomedical science to work in labs to study how to diagnose, treat and prevent disease.

Medical researchers can specialise in specific areas such as viruses, blood, the immune system, or genes.

Medical researchers are currently working on amazing projects such as the cures for cancer, diabetes, HIV and other diseases.

Dentists diagnose and treat problems with people’s teeth and gums – but you probably knew that.

Did you know dentists can detect mouth cancer? Or that they also work with the muscles of the head, neck and jaw, the tongue, salivary glands, and the nervous system of the head and neck?

Pharmacists are one of the most trusted professions in Australia and help people everyday with their health and wellbeing.

Pharmacists are experts in medicines, ointments and tablets. They can advise on the safest and most effective way to treat common illnesses.

Pharmacists aren’t limited to the local chemist – they can work in rural and remote places, where they spend more time with patients and educating the community.

Nurses provide hands-on, personal care to patients in hospitals, GP’s offices, schools, and in the community.

Nurses can specialise to work in areas such as emergency medicine, burns, diabetes education, mental health, aged care, intensive care – and much more.

Occupational therapists help a huge variety of people with illness, injury or disability to develop the skills they need for daily living and working.

Occupational therapists help children develop hand-eye coordination for sport and school, they coach people to get moving after surgeries such as hip replacements, they provide equipment for disabled people so they can work and they help develop coping strategies for people overcoming mental health issues.

Physiotherapists diagnose and treat people with physical injury through exercises, massage and other physical treatments.

After their studies, physiotherapists can specialise in areas such as sports medicine, children’s health or disorders of the body.

Physiotherapists can work in hospitals, clinics or travel with professional sports teams or athletes.

Medical scientists examine samples of body tissues in a lab with the latest technologies.

They can diagnose diseases in humans and animals, investigate crime (forensic science), work with medicines or discover poisons.

Medical Scientists train in medical laboratory science and work closely with other scientists to discover medical treatments that can save lives.

Psychologists are experts in mental health.

After training, clinical psychologists can assess and treat issues such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders, ADHD and stress.

Psychologists have patients who are children, adults and families. They work in hospitals, in the community and in their own practices.

Speech pathologists study, diagnose and treat people with communication disorders.

This includes problems with speaking, listening, understanding language, reading, writing and stuttering, as well as problems with swallowing food and drink safely.

Speech pathologists can be based in hospitals, rehab centres, community health centres and schools.

Discover more

Thomas, Marcus and Mathew are dental students who travelled to a faraway country for practical experience that helped the local people.

Brittany has combined her love of arts, particularly musical theatre, with her study and career as a speech pathologist.

Hear why Rebecca’s degree can take her anywhere