What is a health professional?
A healthcare professional is a person who works in the field of healthcare. Roles vary widely and can include:
- Social workers
- Occupational therapists
- Physical therapists
- Speech pathologists
Healthcare workers all have a singular goal — to help their patients maintain excellent health. Healthcare workers can practice in a variety of environments, including private offices, hospitals, outpatient care centers, schools, and other locations. Many healthcare professionals require state licenses to practice besides extensive education and training.
Healthcare professional main roles, responsibilities and duties
The specific duties for healthcare professionals depend on a number of factors including role, license and workplace. Consider the main job responsibilities for common healthcare professional positions.
Doctors are typically in charge of patient well-being in a care facility. Job duties include:
- Taking medical histories, diagnosing, treating and counseling patients
- Ordering tests, reviewing results and making healthcare decisions based on the tests
- Acting in a professional manner, including impartiality towards patients
- Performing procedures and minor surgeries
- Communicating with others on the patient’s care team
- Continuing education through professional development
- Overseeing medical students and new doctors
Nurses assist doctors and other healthcare professionals with patient care and communication. Additionally, their role includes:
- Administering medications
- Carrying out physician-recommended treatment
- Communicating with other healthcare professionals
- Updating and maintaining patient medical charts
- Discussing patient care with the patient and their family
- Offering counseling as needed to patients and families
Therapists can assist patients with physical or mental ailments. Common job duties include:
- Creating and maintaining patient medical records
- Researching potential exercises for patient recovery
- Providing treatment through talk or physical therapy
- Advocating for the patient’s needs
- Providing at-home wellness plans for patients
Counselors help patients overcome hardship or mental health challenges. Most do not have prescribing abilities and instead rely on other means for patient recovery. Job duties include:
- Interviewing patients to learn more about them
- Diagnosing emotional and mental disorders
- Creating treatment plans
- Educating patients on effective coping mechanisms
- Keeping records of patient sessions and symptom improvement
Pharmacists dispense medications, as prescribed by doctors. Job responsibilities include:
- Preparing medications
- Educating patients on potential side effects or drug interactions
- Dispensing medications to patients
- Managing technicians and other support staff
- Ensuring patient privacy
Benefits of hiring an experienced healthcare professional
Consider these advantages of bringing on an experienced healthcare professional to your company:
- They are prepared: Healthcare professionals with experience are prepared to handle just about any situation they come across on the job calmly and professionally.
- They are competent: With years of experience and continuing education, healthcare professionals who have spent substantial time in the industry know-how to perform their jobs.
- They are knowledgeable: Experienced healthcare professionals have extensive knowledge from working in the field.
How to hire a healthcare professional
If you’re hiring a healthcare professional for your business, follow these steps to ensure you recruit the best possible candidates for your company.
1. Consider using a healthcare staffing agency
If you want to find excellent candidates to fill your healthcare positions, consider using the services of a healthcare staffing agency. Many ensure the potential employees in their databases have active medical licenses, the appropriate continuing education credits and other important qualifications. Using a healthcare staffing agency saves you time and resources during the hiring process.
2. Create a thorough job description
If you prefer to do your own job posting, ensure you write an informative and thorough job description that includes the following information:
- The job title
- The key details of the job
- Logistics like number of hours and work environment
- Required education, licenses and skills
- Desired education, licenses and skills
- Company description
- What to include in the application
- How to submit the application
- Contact information
3. Improve your brand recognition
The healthcare industry often has more open positions than it does suitable applicants. You may have some competition when working to hire experienced and reputable healthcare professionals. Making sure your company has excellent brand recognition can help you get noticed by potential employees and improve your chances of making a great hire.
4. Offer benefits
Provide outstanding benefits as part of your overall compensation package. Thoughtful and effective benefits options for healthcare professionals might include:
- Health benefits
- Paid time off
- Professional development
- Student debt assistance
An enticing benefits package could help you attract superior candidates.
5. Ask thoughtful interview questions
During the job interview, ask questions that help you and your potential employee get to know each other. The job interview is the best time to see if the candidate is a good fit for both the position and the company. Consider questions like these:
- “Why are you interested in working for our company?”
- “What kinds of professional development do you like to attend?”
- “How do you stay aware of changes in the industry?”
- “What are your long-term career goals?”
- “What excites you the most about this role?”
- “How do you handle conflict with patients or clients?”
- “Do you prefer to work on your own or with a team?”
- “What do you feel qualifies you for this position?”
Healthcare professionals perform important jobs in myriad work environments. Consider what specific role you need to fill and the best way to hire healthcare professionals to ensure the best fit for the candidates and your company.