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  1. Why choose a career in the health sector?
School of Health Sciences

Why choose a career in the health sector?

Why choose a career in the health sector?

The health sector is one of the largest employment sectors in the UK. Health care staff benefit from progression opportunities throughout their careers and can begin the journey to promotion soon after qualifying. Working in the sector can also be one of the most rewarding and challenging places to work; but it is also the one place where you will make a real difference to people’s lives every day.

Nursing

Many people who choose to become a nurse have known that this is the career for them from an early age; others have been drawn to the profession after experiencing care either personally or for friends and family; but all those who enjoy successful careers as nurses are passionate, patient, caring, considerate and determined.

As a nurse you will work in a profession where each day you are making a real difference to people’s lives; no one day will be the same and it is unlikely any nurse will tell you that the job is easy, but they will tell you that it is one of the most rewarding career paths you can choose.

Nursing is also a profession which provides a lifelong career; whether you qualify as an adult, child or mental health nurse you will have opportunities to progress and diversify your role throughout your career; working in settings including hospitals, surgeries, the community or even overseas.

All City’s nursing degree courses are accredited by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), which means on successful completion of the course you can apply for your ‘pin’ and begin practicing as a registered nurse. The NMC registration is recognised in many other countries as well as the UK, so if you dream of working and living abroad, you may already be qualified to do so.

The expected starting salary for qualified nurses working within the NHS in central London is between £26,067 and £28,314.


Midwifery

When people think of midwives, they usually think about their role in bringing new life into the world; but midwives are responsible for much more and manage the health and safety of both mother and baby throughout the pregnancy and post-natal period.

As a midwife you will firstly be supporting the mother; carrying out clinical examinations and providing health and parent education as well as general support and guidance throughout the pregnancy. After the baby has been delivered midwives continue their support, helping parents adapt to their new roles and work with other healthcare services to check the new baby and mothers’ health and wellbeing.

Midwifery is a challenging career; midwives work with a diverse range of people from teenage mothers to mothers who are socially excluded, disabled mothers and those from varying social and ethnic backgrounds. As a midwife you must be compassionate and understanding and ready for any situation you are presented with. A midwife's job can be incredibly stressful; midwives need to be able to cope in emergency situations and are responsible for the safety of both mother and child. But, alongside the stress it is also one of the most rewarding and exciting jobs within the healthcare sector. Every day you will be preparing expectant parents for the birth of their children or being the person who brings a child into the world.  

Midwifery is a lifelong career with many opportunities for progression, to diversify your work setting and build on your skills and knowledge throughout your career. City’s BSc Midwifery degree is accredited by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), which means on successful completion of the course you can apply for registration and begin practicing as a qualified midwife. The NMC registration is recognised in many other countries as well as the UK, so if you dream of working and living abroad, you may already be qualified to do so.

The expected starting salary for a qualified midwife working within the NHS in central London is between £26,067 and £28,314


Speech and Language Therapist

Speech and language therapists (SLTs) provide life-changing treatment and support for adults and children who have difficulties with communicating or eating, drinking and swallowing. SLTs are responsible for supporting clients through treatment and working with colleagues within the healthcare sector to design an appropriate therapy programme for each individual. SLTs also work with their clients support networks, such as parents, partners and careers to show them how to support therapy in places such as the home or in schools.

As a speech and language therapist you will require a wide skill-set; communication and listening skills are vital when working with people who struggle themselves to communicate or are frustrated by their situation. SLTs must also be able to create positive working relationships with their clients to engage them in treatment and encourage them to continue when they are struggling. When working with children, SLTs must be creative, turning therapy into games and igniting the child’s imagination. It is vital that as a SLT you have patience and compassion, your clients will be struggling to communicate and be understood and it is your job to help them get there… however long it takes. Speech and language therapy is an incredibly rewarding profession; the therapy SLTs deliver makes a daily difference to people’s lives and enables clients to communicate again or first the first time and helps them regain or find their independence.

Speech and language therapy provides a lifelong and varied career path, with opportunities for career progression within the public and private healthcare sectors or as a self-employed SLT. SLTs can develop their skills by continuing with postgraduate education or entering into research roles. City’s BSc in Speech and Language Therapy is accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council, meaning successful graduates from the course can apply for registration as an SLT and begin practicing once they graduate.

The expected starting salary for qualified speech and language therapists working within the NHS in central London is between £26,067 and £28,314


Radiography

Radiographers provide a vital service within the healthcare sector, using the latest medical technology to diagnose and treat injury or disease.  Radiographers work closely with their patients and are responsible for helping them understand their diagnosis, the treatment they will receive and why this treatment has be recommended. There are two main types of radiographers, diagnostic radiographers who use x-ray and ultrasound technology to identify illness and injury and therapeutic radiographers, who treat patients suffering with cancer.

Both diagnostic and therapeutic radiographers work with patients who are anxious and confused about what their diagnosis means and how this will affect their future. It is important that radiographers are sympathetic, compassionate and listen to their patients’ needs. Radiographers can also find themselves dealing with emergency situations and must be able to stay calm and communicate in stressful situations. Radiographers work with colleagues who deliver services across the healthcare sector, so it is important that as a radiographer you enjoying working with others and as part of a team.

Radiographers are often at the forefront of delivering pioneering new treatments. As a radiographer you must be adaptable and ready to learn new skills and develop your practice as new treatments and technologies are trialled and introduced.

As with many careers within the healthcare sector, a career in radiography is challenging, busy and at times stressful, but incredibly rewarding. Radiographers deliver treatment and care which saves people’s lives every single day.

City’s radiography courses are accredited by the College of Radiographers. Eligible graduates can apply for registration when they complete their course and practice within the UK. Radiography is a lifelong career and offers many specialist routes and room for career progression within both public and private practice.

The starting salary for qualified radiographers working within the NHS in central London is between £26,067 and £28,314


Optometry

Optometry is an exciting and growing discipline within the healthcare sector. Optometrists work with the general public, from young children to the elderly, to diagnose and treat visual impairment.  

As an optometrist you will see a number of patients a day, with no day being the same as the last. You may be treating a child who needs glasses for the first time, or an adult who wants to try wearing lenses, then an elderly patient with declining vision or someone who requires further treatment at an eye hospital. Every patient will be different and optometrists require excellent communication and listening skills to manage each case.

Optometry is a growing sector and one which is continuously evolving with new technologies and methods of treatments. Optometrists need to be engaged and keen to learn and develop their skills throughout their career. There are many opportunities for progression and to move within the sector from private clinics to hospitals, industry and education.

City’s BSc Optometry degree is accredited by the General Optical Council, with graduates eligible to register with the General Optical Council and practice as qualified optician once they have completed their pre-registration year. Salaries usually start between £22,000 - £35,000 and can rise to around £80,000 for senior optometry managers and consultants.

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.