Other Health Fields
Naturopathic medicine is a primary care profession emphasizing prevention and treatment while maximizing our natural ability to self-heal. Naturopathic physicians combine approaches of allopathic medicine with nutrition, natural remedies, manipulative techniques and Asian medicine to treat patients holistically. A bachelor's degree is required followed by a four-year naturopathic program. While gaining in popularity, practitioners are not fully licensed to practice in all states.
Chiropractors link health problems to the muscular, nervous and skeletal systems. By manipulating the body, they can restore function. Although some chiropractic schools will accept students with only two to three years of undergraduate training, most prefer that students have a bachelor's degree. The chiropractic training itself is a four-year program.
Podiatric programs train doctors to prevent, diagnose and treat problems of the foot and lower leg using medical, surgical and mechanical techniques. A bachelor's degree is required before admission into a four-year podiatric medicine program. A one- to three-year residency is required before licensure.
Orthotists create external supports and braces for people with weakened or deformed body parts. Prosthetists produce and fit artificial limbs. Most programs are post-baccalaureate (after your bachelor's degree) certificate programs and at least one program offers a master's degree. Huge shortages in these fields are expected!
Degrees give students the background necessary to run a hospital or HMO. These programs generally include a mix of marketing, finances, human resources and public relations. Though some programs offer a bachelor's degree, a master's degree is recommended.
Pathologist assistants provide anatomical and pathology services under the supervision of a physician pathologist. They perform a variety of tasks including examination of surgical specimens and autopsies. Their duties include preparation of specimens, obtaining clinical histories, preparing tissues for processing and postmortem exams.
Working under the direction of a physician, anesthesiologist assistants design and implement anesthesia care plans. They operate anesthesia equipment; monitor patients before, during and after anesthesia; and assist in lifesaving measures such as CPR and life support.
Postbaccalaureate programs are basically bridge programs between undergraduate study and professional health care programs. They may be a good option for students who need to improve their academic credentials or for students who have changed their mind about careers and need to quickly take all of their prerequisite coursework.