A degree in public health opens the door to numerous job opportunities. Public health major jobs range from making, implementing, and administrating public health policies to maternal and child health, prevention and treatment of infectious diseases, and epidemiology. Within these categories, the exact tasks may focus on education, research, policy writing, or management.
Some types of public health major jobs involve working with smaller groups, such as implementing public health measures within a small community or teaching public health courses at a college. Others may involve working with larger populations like researching preventative measures for infectious diseases or advancing global health and wellness.
What’s the best public health major job for you? That depends on your personal skills and preferences, and whether you prefer working with smaller groups or larger populations.
These top public health major jobs are in great demand today.
1. Health education specialist
Health education specialists, or health educators, are committed to providing small or large communities with the information they need to improve their health and well-being. Educators in public health may focus on different public health aspects such as chronic disease, nutrition, exercise, drug use, and better overall health. They may work in healthcare facilities, non-profits, schools, clinics, or the government.
Health educators work directly with community members to conduct research into prevailing health issues and implement educational programs. Part of their role also includes recommending better alternatives to current preventive measures and reviewing communication efforts. They promote programs through schools in the community, public outreach, or advertising.
A role as a public health specialist may be a good option for you if you have strong analytical and communication skills and enjoy carrying out research.
2. Community health worker
Community health workers work directly with specific communities to resolve differentheal health-related issues. They also educate members on how to improve their overall well-being. They also liaise between the community and local health organizations to make it easier for the members to access essential health services.
Part of a community health worker’s task involves conducting outreach and addressing health barriers within the community. They also provide community members with the resources they need to manage infectious diseases such as tuberculosis and help members navigate the health system more easily. When necessary, they may also be required to deliver certain services such as blood pressure screenings or testing for certain endemic diseases.
A role as a community health worker may be a good fit for you if you have strong listening, coordination, and analytical skills and you enjoy working with groups of people on health-related matters.
3. Public Health Advocate
Public health advocates perform a challenging but immensely satisfying role. They work tirelessly to address and overcome pressing issues related to justice and equality. Especially in underserved communities and vulnerable populations.
A public health advocate advocates for better health measures for various demographics including children, the chronically ill, the elderly, or any other overlooked or vulnerable group. Their workdays are divided between talking to community members to identify potential threats and spending time looking for practical solutions.
You would make a great public health advocate if you feel passionately about justice for all. To be successful in this role, you must have the tenacity and persistence to challenge not only ruling authorities but also long-standing traditions within communities.
4. Emergency Response Planner
By their very nature, emergencies can happen anytime and anywhere, most often when you least expect them. Unfortunately, their suddenness also leaves the community unprepared and unsure about what to do next. This is where emergency response planners play a vital role. By planning response activities focused on mitigating the damage and losses suffered by the community.
Emergency response planners work coordinate with local communities and various organizations to plan and create practical measures for various types of natural and man-made disasters. In the event that a disaster does occur, they play a big role in implementing and coordinating response activities to help the affected communities.
As an emergency response planner, you may work at the local, state, federal, or another agency level.
5. Public health researcher
A public health researcher spends a major portion of their time researching answers to larger questions related to public health. Different populations have different health issues, many of which are often recurring.
Public health researchers analyze lab results and data collected over the years to determine the root cause of these repeated occurrences. These findings are then presented to the relevant local, state, or federal agency so relevant policies and programs can be developed and implemented.
This job is a good fit for you if you enjoy working with data, doing research, and looking for answers to larger questions related to public health. Public health researchers may work for government agencies at all levels, NGOs, and other institutions.
6. Health care administrator
Healthcare administrators are employed by all types of medical facilities, small and large, to oversee the business side of healthcare. Running a medical facility is complex. While medical staff attend to their patients, a healthcare administrator coordinates everything behind the scenes. They ensure that all operations function efficiently at every step.
As a healthcare administrator, you may interact with patients very rarely. Most of your time will be spent discussing, planning, and getting feedback from upper management and resolving staff-related issues. Helping things run smoothly with regard to human resources and administrative tasks ensures that patients receive excellent and efficient care without any disruptions.
7. Public Health Epidemiologist
Epidemiology focuses on learning more about predominant diseases, illnesses, and injuries. The primary goal is to get better insight into the statistics related to public health in order to create more effective prevention and treatment services.
Public health epidemiologists have expert knowledge of the biological development and transmission of various illnesses. They use this insight to create effective treatment measures as well as measures for preventing the mass spread of the disease.
These professionals spend most of their time collecting and analyzing data from a designated area. Using that information they determine the cause and risk factors in a specific population. They may work in medical facilities, private research laboratories, or government agencies.
What You Should Know About Public Health Major Jobs
The basic requirement for all of the public health major jobs listed above is a bachelor’s degree. While a master’s degree is not mandatory for any of these roles, it could help you land a better job at a more established organization. There are some public health major jobs that require a master’s degree as a minimum qualification.
Before enrolling in a public health program, make sure to understand the job description and minimum qualifications for the different specialties within public health. This will help you make a more informed decision about which specialty may be the best fit for you.
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