Associate's Degrees in Nursing or Health Care

Associate's Degrees in Nursing or Health Care

Find out popular health care degree options.

With baby boomers heading into retirement and needing more medical care, there is a growing need for people to work in the health care industry.

Health care is one of the fastest growing fields, with the most job openings across the country, making it the hottest industry today.

If a four-year college is not for you, or you are looking for a fast entry into a career in the health care profession, earning an associate’s degree in health care might be the best option for you.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that by 2018 there will be an addition of 3.2 million jobs in the health care field. The majority of these jobs will be in home health care service and offices of health care practitioners.

Associate’s Degree in Nursing

Nurses spend their entire careers caring for other individuals. A great amount of compassion - as well as a high tolerance for bodily fluids such as blood – is a must for this occupation.

You can earn an associate’s degree in nursing at a community college, nursing school, and some four-year colleges. This degree qualifies you to take the NCLEX-RN and apply for licensure as a registered nurse.

Registered nurses may work in a variety of health care facilities including physician’s offices, hospitals, nursing homes and patient’s homes. Their main duties include teaching patients how to maintain their health and assisting physicians in checking vital signs, such as blood pressure and heart rate.

Associate’s Degree in Medical Coding/Billing

If you aren’t a “people person” or have low tolerance for the more hands-on aspects of the health care profession, medical billing and coding could be a great option for you. You’ll be working behind-the-scenes in the medical services by being the liaison between insurance providers and doctor’s offices and hospitals.

In this program, you learn how to submit insurance claims to insurance companies and ensure that the doctor or hospital is reimbursed for any expenses covered by insurance.

Associate’s Degree in Dental Assisting

People will always be in need of dental health care. Dental assistants learn to be a jack-of-all-trades in a dentist’s office. The associate’s degree in dental assisting program trains students to work in a variety of positions in the office, patient care, and laboratory.

Just as a medical assistant works closely with a doctor or surgeon during medical procedures, so does a dental assistant, handing instruments or materials to the dentist when needed.

Some states require dental assistants to gain certification. Check with your state to find out if this is a requirement for you. The Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) credential, which is conferred by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB), is suggested or mandatory in over 37 states.

Associate’s Degree in Emergency Medical Services

Emergency medical care takes a special kind of person. You have to be quick on your feet and remain calm under pressure.

An associate’s degree in emergency medical services prepares students to work in a private or public hospital emergency department. The program teaches students practical career-related skills, such as how to properly use the medical instruments and equipment and how to treat various trauma victims.

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