Researching the best jobs to have in the medical field can be difficult, especially if you don’t know where to start looking or which factors are most important. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve scoured the web to bring you this comprehensive list of the ten best-paying jobs in the medical field, based on years of experience and salary range. From physicians and surgeons to nurses and lab technicians, these are some of the highest-paying jobs in the medical field today!
It’s a popular misconception that doctors make bank. In reality, most MDs and DOs are working for pennies. But anesthesiologists—who administer anesthesia during surgery—are part of an elite group: They earn around $250,000 a year on average. If you want to be wealthy, go into medicine—but specialize in anesthesia instead of primary care.
If you have a passion for skincare and healthy living, becoming a dermatologist is an excellent career choice. The median annual salary for a dermatologist was $208,000 as of 2010, according to Medscape. This job requires at least eight years of a college education—four years to earn your bachelor’s degree and another four to complete medical school. You must also complete an internship and three or more years of residency training before being able to practice medicine on your own.
An ophthalmologist diagnoses and treats eye disease, disorders, and injuries. In 2013, ophthalmologists reported an average salary of $220,200 per year. That figure is projected to increase by 13% through 2022. That’s a lot of dough! Ophthalmologists typically need at least eight years of education beyond high school—and it’s worth it: they make significantly more than their colleagues who don’t go all out to become specialists.
4. Oral Surgeon
As an oral surgeon, you’ll need to complete four years of college and then four years of dental school. When you’re finally done, you can start practicing and earning big money. The average oral surgeon’s salary is $193,570 a year. If you work for private practice, your payment will be even higher—as much as $300,000 or more. Plus, since your patients are usually paying out of pocket for their care (unlike in other medical fields), they may want to pay extra for faster service or better results. This means that you have more opportunities to earn additional income by offering these services as part of your regular practice—or by starting up a second practice focused on them exclusively.
Most orthodontists earn about $204,700 per year, which is about $13,000 more than the average dentist. This can be a lucrative career path because many orthodontists are paid based on how many procedures they perform. Because of their demand for braces and Invisalign, many children and teenagers receive orthodontic care from an early age. And once they get to college, dental students will inevitably receive orthodontic treatment of their own as part of their school tuition.
Pay may vary greatly depending on location and experience, but pathologists are paid an average of $189,950 per year. These professionals diagnose diseases using lab tests to analyze biopsies and other medical samples. The best jobs for pathologists are found in large cities with a high population density. This is because more patients mean more chances to be exposed to illnesses, which will increase revenue potential for employers of these professionals. Pathologists who work within managed care organizations often get financial incentives from insurance companies based on their work results.
If you want to help kids and be part of a growing sector of health care, pediatrics is a natural fit. The field is expected to grow 20 percent by 2020, according to BLS data. A lot of it has to do with population growth, Freedman says. A larger percentage of our population is getting older and more people are having children, he explains. There’s going to be greater demand for pediatricians as we move forward over time. The median salary for pediatricians was $208,000 in 2012 (the most recent year for which data is available). But if you work in an urban area or specialize—like pediatric cardiology or dermatology—you can make even more than that.
Psychiatry is a medical specialty that deals with mental disorders and behavioral dysfunctions. It involves treating patients suffering from conditions such as depression, schizophrenia, drug abuse, anxiety disorder, and personality disorder. Psychiatrists are best paid among all medical professionals. Median annual salary: $174,920. Job outlook: Psychiatry jobs are expected to grow 15 percent by 2024. Demand for psychiatric services has increased during recent years due to the growth of mental health awareness programs across many communities.
The BLS notes that radiology is one of two medical fields where the median annual pay tops $250,000. According to Indeed, physicians who use imaging technology to diagnose and treat diseases can expect a mean salary of $280,000 (2016). There are currently over 67,000 physician jobs listed on Indeed. These numbers suggest that competition for radiology positions will be fierce in the coming years. However, with a steady growth of jobs expected by 2024, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to land one.
A veterinarian is a medical professional who examines, diagnoses, and treats animal diseases and injuries. Typically, veterinarians work with all types of animals, ranging from pets to farm animals to wildlife. Veterinarians must complete at least four years of undergraduate school followed by four years of veterinary school; they also must pass state licensing exams. According to May 2011 Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data, veterinarians had an average annual salary of $87,380.
Here I have discussed the top ten best paying jobs in the medical field. I talk about how doctors and surgeons are some of the highest-paid professions, but they are also very competitive to get into. However, many other medical fields pay well, even though they aren’t as competitive to get into. The average salary for a doctor is around $150,000 per year. The average salary for a surgeon is around $250,000 per year. These numbers can be higher depending on where you live and what type of specialty you practice.