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Allied Health vs Medicine/Nursing

| | 2 minute read

If you have a passion for wellness, you probably already know how far the healthcare world reaches. It’s so much more than what you find in a doctor’s office! You know you want to get involved, but where do you start? With so many different career paths in medicine, it may be challenging to find the right road to take. You can break things down into Allied Health and Medicine. In a “one hand washes the other” way, these two sides of healthcare compliment one another in a way that ensures complete and efficient methods of keeping people healthy. But which is right for you?

What is Medicine and Nursing?

Medicine is primarily focused on treating illnesses and injuries. Often when finding a job in Medicine, you’ll be working in one of three areas: general health, dental medicine or pharmacy.

To work in medicine, you’ll be required to obtain a medical degree. It’s very likely that you’ll find a job as a doctor, a dentist, pharmacist, or nurse.

What is Allied Health?

Allied Health is distinct from traditional medicine. Often times, allied health professionals work in tandem with doctors to diagnose and treat illnesses or injuries. However, you can also find a job that works independently from a doctor’s office.

The range of allied health careers encompasses a vast array of both autonomous and collaborative healthcare roles. These jobs actually make up about 60% of the medical field.

Jobs that work with doctors will include MRI and surgical techs. Dentists have dental assistants and hygienists, and pharmacist have technicians of their own. If you want to work in a more independent setting, you could go into speech therapy, physical therapy, medical laboratory science and a myriad of others.

How are these different?

The medical industry focuses heavily on diagnosing and curing illnesses and injuries. Because of that, there is a great deal of cross training and evolving knowledge of the way illnesses and injuries can be diagnosed and cured.

For allied health jobs, the focus is more on prevention and recovery methods. This requires a lot of knowledge in a specific area. With that knowledge, allied health professionals play a more specific role in keeping people healthy.

Whether you’re looking for a job in medicine or allied health, you can do so completely online with The University of Southern Mississippi. Our Nursing BSN degree will help you get into the medicine field, and our Public Health degree emphasizing Allied Health will put you on the path to becoming a public health professional. We also offer a Medical Laboratory Science degree for technicians looking to move ahead in their career. Check out our other programs to explore more ways to make a difference in healthcare!

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