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What is Health, Nursing and Medicine?
The health care field refers to the hundreds of professions that support humans’ physical and emotional well-being. Depending upon what kind of degree a student pursues, training in this field can qualify the graduate to perform a wide variety of tasks in a number of different settings. For example, a doctor or nurse provides hands-on service in a hospital or clinic, while medical researchers conduct experiments in laboratory settings, and medical administrative support personnel ensure the secure storage of patient information and facilitate the transmission of important medical information.
Who Should Study Health, Nursing, and Medicine?
If you’re considering a degree in health, nursing and medicine, you should ideally answer “yes” to the following questions:
- Do I have a strong background in the sciences, including biology, chemistry and anatomy?
- Am I reasonably comfortable with math and new technologies, including computers?
- Am I empathic and a good listener?
- Am I a good multi-tasker?
- Can I remain calm under pressure?
- Do I want to dedicate my career to helping people heal?
Ideally, you should also answer “no” to the following questions:
- Am I squeamish?
- Am I germ-phobic?
- Do I get stressed out under pressure?
- Do I prefer language, music and the arts to science and math?
Sample Health, Nursing and Medicine Classes
Classes in health, nursing and medicine programs vary depending upon the degree. Here is a listing of some of the classes a student could expect to encounter while pursuing some of the more commonly-known health, nursing and medicine programs:
Nursing. Nursing refers to the care of individuals, groups and communities via the prevention of illness, optimization of health, diagnosis and advocacy. Nursing graduate classes might include:
- Human development
- Human anatomy
- Nursing science
Medicine. The study of medicine refers to the study of pathology (that which causes disease), diagnosis (identifying the disease), prognosis (determining the outcome of disease) and treatment (modifying or curing the disease). Medicine graduate classes might include:
Mental health. The study of mental health refers to understanding the psychological well-being or pathology of individuals, families and groups. Graduate-level mental health classes might include:
- Clinical psychology
- Abnormal psychology
- Individual and family therapy
Dentistry. Dentistry refers to the medical treatment of human teeth. Graduate dentistry classes might include:
- Human physiology
- Dental pharmacology
In addition, many health, nursing and medicine graduate programs require an internship or practicum. This provides students with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience putting classroom theory into real-world practice.
Types of Health, Nursing and Medicine Careers
Those interested in a career in health, nursing and/or medicine have plenty of paths from which to choose. Individuals who would like to work in direct patient care could consider the following jobs, among others:
- Nurse. Nurses care for ill people, promote health and prevent illness.
- Physician’s assistant. Physician’s assistants provide certain medical services under the supervision of a licensed medical doctor.
- Medical doctor. Medical doctors, or physicians, promote and/or restore health through the diagnosis and treatment of illness.
- Naturopathic doctor. Naturopathic doctors focus on holistic treatment of illness, using natural remedies to treat imbalance within the body.
- Dentist. Dentists care for the teeth, gums and mouth.
- Psychologist. Psychologists study mental processes and help to restore and/or maintain mental health.
- Herbalist. Herbalists use herbs to treat illness and promote health.
- Chiropractor. Chiropractors restore spinal health by using treatments such as spinal manipulation and manipulation of the soft tissues.
- Veterinarian. Veterinarians care for sick and injured animals.
- Acupuncturist. Acupuncturists treat pain or disease by inserting needles at certain points in the skin.