26 Best Paid Jobs in Healthcare Without a Bachelor’s Degree (2021)

Best Paid Jobs in Health Care

The healthcare field is one of the largest the world, with some of the highest-paying jobs

However, many people are refrained from pursuing a career in the healthcare field because it requires multiple years to reach a bachelor’s degree or even more. 

Lucky for you, there are plenty of healthcare jobs that don’t require a degree, all the while sustaining decent pay! 

In this article, we’ll walk you through the best-paid jobs in the healthcare field with little schooling. 

26 Best Paid Jobs in Health Care That Doesn’t Need a Bachelor’s Degree

1. Radiation Therapist

Role: They’re responsible for reviewing the radiation therapy plan created by oncologists and administering the anti-cancer radiation doses to patients.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $86,850

2. Nuclear Medicine Technologist

Role: They are the healthcare professionals responsible for using nuclear technology to either diagnose or treat a variety of conditions and diseases.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $79,590

3. Dental Hygienist

Role: They help in examining the patients’ mouths for signs of dental decay and other diseases. They can also teach patients about oral health.

Requirements: Associate’s degree 

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $77,090

4. Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

Role: A Sonographer is a trained specialist capable of using imaging and ultrasound equipment to form images of various parts of the body and analyze them.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $75,920

5. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Technologist

Role: They operate MRI imaging and scanning machines to create diagnostic images requested by a physician. They’re also responsible for maintaining the devices and keeping both them and the patients safe during the process.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020:  $74,690

6. Occupational Therapy Assistant

Role: They work under the direction of an occupational therapist to help treat patients and monitor their activities to make sure that they’re performing their self-care therapy the right way.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $62,940

7. Respiratory Therapist

Role: They work under the direction of doctors to help patients with respiratory problems. Their work also includes managing ventilators and oxygen masks, as well as administering lung drugs.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $62,810

8. Physical Therapist Assistant

Role: They help patients under the supervision of physical therapists by monitoring the patients before, after, and during therapy. Not to be confused with physical therapy aides that only require a High school diploma or equivalent and are paid significantly less. ($28,450)

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $59,770

9. Cardiovascular Technologists

Role: Also known as cardiovascular technicians. They’re responsible for helping cardiologists diagnose patients suspected of having vascular or cardiac disease, whether using invasive or non-invasive procedures in the process.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $59,100

10. Occupational Health and Safety Technician

Role: They have multiple functions, including collecting samples of potentially toxic materials, inspecting, and evaluating them from workplace environments to ensure that they follow the proper safety standards.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $53,340

11. Medical Laboratory Technician

Role: A medical laboratory technician is responsible for conducting research and providing clinical information regarding disease diagnosis, treatment, and prevention by performing laboratory tests and processing the results.

Requirements:  Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $53,120

12. Hearing Aid Specialists

Role: They’re responsible for evaluating the patients’ hearing capabilities and choosing the ideal hearing aid to help them hear properly.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $52,630

13. Surgical Technologist

Role: They help surgeons provide safer and more effective conduct of surgical procedures. They also ensure the functionality of all equipment involved in the operation.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree.

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $49,710

14. Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses

Role: They’re responsible for monitoring the patients’ health status and checking multiple vitals, and provide primary care, such as inserting catheters and changing bandages

Requirements:  Postsecondary certificate

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $48,820

15. Medical Records Specialist

Role: They’re responsible for managing and organizing all the patients’ health paperwork and data. They ensure that everything is filled out accurately. They’re also responsible for securing all these files.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree.

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $44,090

16. Massage Therapist

Role: They treat clients by manipulating their muscles and soft tissues in sessions to relieve pain and stress.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $43,620

17. Dental Assistant

Role: They’re responsible for helping the dentist in the clinic and provide them supplies during treatments and procedures.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate.

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $41,180

18. Medical Equipment Preparer

Role: Although the name might suggest that they’re only responsible for preparing the medical equipment, they’re also responsible for the complete handling of the machines. This also includes sterilization, maintenance, and reporting malfunctions.

Requirements: High school diploma or equivalent

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $38,800

19. Dispensing Optician

Role: They’re responsible for preparing optical prescriptions that ophthalmologists and optometrists write. They also supply and fit glasses as well as visual aids to patients.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $38,530

20. Ophthalmic Medical Technician

Role: Not to be confused with dispensing opticians. These healthcare professionals are also called allied ophthalmic personnel. They mainly help opticians in performing eye-related tasks in clinics.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $37,940

21. Emergency Medical Technician and Paramedic

Role: They’re the first line of response to emergencies by responding to 911 calls and assessing the patient’s conditions. Paramedics are also responsible for applying emergency medical assistance, such as CPR and bandaging wounds.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $36,650

22. Phlebotomists

Role: They’re responsible for drawing blood from patients, sending the blood vials for testing, performing blood transfusions as well as assisting with blood donations.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $36,320

23. Medical Transcriptionists

Role: They’re responsible for listening to healthcare professional vocal reports and voice records and convert them into written forms.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $35,270

24. Pharmacy Technician

Role: They work under the directions of pharmacists, whether in retail pharmacies, hospital pharmacies, or drug research labs. Their main line of work includes preparing, packaging, and distributing medicines to patients as per the pharmacist’s orders.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $35,110

25. Psychiatric Technician

Role: Also known as “mental health technicians”. They’re mental patients care providers responsible for observing their behaviors and recording their current condition.

Requirements: Postsecondary certificate, or associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $35,030

26. Dietetic Technician

Role: A dietetic technician is responsible for design and planning food menus while keeping the dietary requirements of patients in mind. They’re also qualified to offer advice on good eating habits and proper meal planning.

Requirements: Associate’s degree

Median Annual Salary in 2020: $30,110

How Can I Get into Healthcare Without a Degree?

As you can see from the list above and according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are plenty of healthcare-related career opportunities that can even pay well and offer full-time benefits. 

Keep in mind that even without a medical degree, you might still need to go have an associate degree or post-secondary certification and a training period before practicing some of these jobs.

Medical Careers in Demand for the Future

The medical field is one of the few fields where the demand for workers in all ranges is always high. 

However, some medical-related jobs are projected to grow in demand over the next few years. These medical careers include:

Doctors are always in huge demand due to shortage in almost all fields

Home medical aids are becoming a huge necessity with the increase in the senior population

Phlebotomists

Medical assistant

Medical and physicians assistants in all fields

What is the Easiest Job in the Medical Field?

There’s a variety of medical field jobs that are relatively easy to get. For a career in the medical field to be easy, it needs to have specific characteristics. 

Of course, it needs to include some relatively simple tasks. However, it should also be easy to get and requires no multiple years degree. Moreover, the job should be in demand and have relatively decent pay.

As far as medical careers go, phlebotomy is considered one of the most accessible jobs to seek in the medical field. 

The job doesn’t require certifications in many states, and training usually takes less than a year to finish. However, being a certified phlebotomist is recommended for better pay and working in some hospitals and clinics.

A phlebotomist’s job is to draw blood from patients, then label the blood vials to be sent for testing. They’re also responsible for performing blood transfusions and conducting field research and assisting with blood donations.

With more and more diseases and conditions being diagnosed through blood imaging and sampling, there’s always a demand for phlebotomy technicians.

Although the job is frequently considered an entry-level one, it still offers relatively decent pay for how easy it can be. Many people become a phlebotomist to earn money while pursuing a higher degree. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for phlebotomists is $36,320, and it requires certification that can be completed in 4 to 8 months.

Highest Paying Jobs in Medical Research

Medical research is considered to be one of the most significant of medical careers. Additionally, it’s also one of the most essential fields in terms of growth and demand. 

Luckily, you can find many job opportunities in medical research without having a bachelor’s degree. Let’s have a quick look at some of them.

Medical Laboratory Technicians

One of the most promising jobs in the medical research sector is the Medical Laboratory Technician, a member of the healthcare department responsible for providing clinical information to fight diseases.

Since new diseases are emerging every day, there’ll always be a need to help conduct research and process specimens. Many medical lab technicians work in teaching hospitals in addition to laboratories.

Luckily, according to the Bureau of Labor, medical lab technicians need a two-year associate degree so that they can start a career in the field. 

The median annual salary of a medical laboratory technician is about $53,120, making it one of the highest paying jobs in the medical research field.

Phlebotomist

As previously mentioned, one of the core tasks of a phlebotomist is conducting some research on blood samples drawn. 

With a median annual salary of $36,320 and a postsecondary certification, it’s easily one of the highest paying medical research jobs that don’t require a bachelor’s degree.

Pharmacy Technician

Although many people think that pharmacy technicians only work in retail and hospital pharmacies, many of them work in drug research (pharmacology) laboratories as well!

In that case, they can also be called “pharmaceutical lab technicians”. 

Although a few pharmacy lab technicians hold a bachelor’s degree or even master’s degree, you’ll often see the majority of them with resumes including associate degrees only, and they earn a median annual salary of more than $35,000.

Wrap Up

There you have it! A complete guide with the 26 best-paid jobs in healthcare without a bachelor’s degree.

As you can see, there’s a wide variety of jobs with excellent career opportunities that awaits you in the medical field, all the while not requiring a college degree that takes several years.

In the end, we hope that this article has helped you make up your mind about the kind of medical career you’re looking for!