While the healthcare industry has for decades been viewed as a sector with a high degree of job security, that security may be changing, especially for certain healthcare roles. Though some of these changes started before COVID-19, the effect of the pandemic on highly trained physicians was shocking to many.
As non-urgent medical care grinded to a halt during the pandemic, doctors found themselves furloughed and having their pay significantly cut. This scenario is one that many physicians did not imagine when they were in training for careers that are normally associated with high pay and good job security.
Even before COVID-19, job security for physicians was on the decline. Several changing factors within the healthcare system have contributed to this problem, one of which has been the change in medical schools that is creating more doctors. As medical schools have offered more students admissions as a strategy for combatting anticipated increases in physician shortages, residency programs have not kept pace. The apparent result will be more MDs who cannot complete training beyond medical school who are therefore unable to practice medicine.
While physicians may be facing some decline in their job security, other workers – like nurses – continue to enjoy high levels of job security. Nurses are in high demand, and that demand does not seem likely to change soon. In addition, there are new roles in healthcare that have arisen due to COVID-19. For example, now that several organizations want to safely conduct their operations, many of them are requiring temperature checks at their entrances, which has led to arguably unforeseeable role of temperature checker.
If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us anything about careers in healthcare, it is that things can change rapidly and unpredictably. The most successful healthcare professionals and organizations are likely to be those that can readily adapt to healthcare needs as they develop.