Other Health Careers

Below is information on other health career fields that you may be interested in pursuing.  There are also many other health careers that are rewarding and challenging beyond the ones listed below.  For more information, see:  Explorehealthcareers.org   and talk with your prehealth advisor.

Pharmacy

Pharmacists specialize in the use of drugs and medications.  They can advise patients, dispense medications in pharmacies and hospitals, work in research, government offices, and pharmaceutical industries.  Pharmacists earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree.

show

Physical Therapy

Physical Therapists are healthcare providers who diagnose and treat patients who have pain, mobility issues, or need physical rehabilitation. Physical Therapists earn a Doctorate of Physical Therapy (DTP) and practice in hospitals, clinics, schools, sports and fitness facilities and nursing homes.  They often form close working relationships with patients over a period of weeks or months.

show

Physician Assistant

Physician Assistants are health care providers who work under a licensed physician, but often will diagnose and treat patients with great autonomy and responsibility.  They can work in primary care, medical specialties, and in hospitals, clinics and rural areas.  Physician Assistants complete a Masters Degree.

  • Coursework and Experience are similar to requirements for medical schools, although you may need to add courses in anatomy, physiology and microbiology.  PA Programs will also expect you to have high number of hours of direct patient care (on average around 1500 hours) and some schools will not allow scribing to count toward those hours. 
  • Application Service: CASPA
  • Resources: PAFocus
  • Health Profession Advisor at Duke: contact the HPA Office
show

Nursing

Nurses work in health care today in many ways, from basic attention to patients to management, oversight of treatment, and doctoral-level research.  Educational pathways include an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN), a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), and a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). 

  • Coursework and Experience will be determined by the type of degree you plan to pursue and the school(s) you apply to.  A great majority of nursing schools will look for nutrition, microbiology, anatomy and physiology, and human growth and development. Shadowing both nurses and physicians will be helpful in understanding how nurses can function in health care.
  • Application Service: None
  • Resources: American Association of Colleges of Nursing & Discover Nursing

Health Profession Advisor at Duke: Dr. Ernie Rushing, ernie.rushing@duke.edu

show