BlogCareer DevelopmentCertificationHealth CareersService CareersA Simple Breakdown to Understand 5 Allied Health Careers & Certifications

A Simple Breakdown to Understand 5 Allied Health Careers & Certifications

The job market continues to expand with various roles and opportunities in fields across the spectrum. Each position requires a combination of soft skills and a knowledge base from an accredited school and curriculum to ensure future employees are equipped to perform a job to the best of their ability.

The healthcare field is no exception, and the career opportunities under this main umbrella are vast. One of those branches includes the allied health field. If you are interested in pursuing a diploma course that gives you an entryway into medical care, this blog will breakdown the careers in the allied health sector and help you decide if one of these career paths is the right fit for you!

What is Allied Health?

Whether you are looking to pursue a future degree as a registered nurse or doctor or simply want to work alongside other healthcare professionals, the allied health field provides individuals with experience and the ability to support other medical staff.

It is specifically defined as those careers that are “distinct from medicine and nursing.”

Most allied health jobs provide the necessary support doctors, nurses, and hospital staff need as they prevent, diagnose, and treat the spectrum of medical illnesses. The allied health jobs often encompass the administrative, diagnostic, and/or rehabilitation side of healthcare.

Because the jobs available to allied health professionals cover a wide range of support, the places where these individuals work will also vary and can include a hospital, doctor’s office/private practice, or home setting.

Careers in Allied Health

Here is a breakdown of five common allied health professions and what their job descriptions entail.

  1. Medical Billing and CodingMedical billers focus on the actual monetary portion by submitting information to insurance companies for proper compensation and deductibles. On the other hand, medical coders focus on adding the correct diagnostic codes after a patient is seen by a doctor. With this information, proper lab testing, medications, and referrals can be ordered by the physician.
  2. Pharmacy TechnicianA pharmacy technician assists the pharmacist with filling prescriptions, processing medications, and using a working knowledge base of measurements, medicine names, and dosages to ensure each patient gets the care they need. It is important to realize an externship is a requirement for this career. Someone can only learn so much about proper dosages, administering vaccinations, and recalling drug interactions until they start utilizing that knowledge in real-world situations.
  3. Medical Office AssistantIndividuals in this field ensure a streamlined process is followed in the medical office. They will answer phone calls, file paperwork, make sure electronic files are accurate, evaluate and make sure lab tests, patient information, and records of hospital stays are accurate, and so much more.
  4. Medical TranscriptionA transcriptionist will make sure medical information is recorded properly for each doctor that a patient sees. This work can be accomplished by assessing terminology, diagnoses, and procedures.
  5. Dental AssistantThis career focuses on the administrative side of running the dental office to ensure a smooth process for other employees and the patients. They must understand HIPPA and OSHA guidelines, dental codes, how to schedule patients, enter data, and post payments.


The Importance of Certification

Each of these allied health careers provide a certification opportunity for those who have completed a diploma course. It is important to look at each career course specifically to see what requirements are needed to sit for the certification exam.

Nevertheless, certifications provide an extra level of validity to one’s career and can help one stand out among employers, increase credibility, provide professional growth and advancement, increase networking opportunities, and allow an expansion of the knowledge learned by applying it to real-life circumstances.

The National Board Associations for each of the allied health careers are listed below:

  1. Medical Billing and Coding – American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) – Certified Professional Coder (CPC)
  2. Pharmacy Technician – Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) – Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT)
  3. Medical Office Assistant – National Healthcareer Association (NHA) – Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA)
  4. Medical Transcription – Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI)– Certified Healthcare Documentation Specialist (CHDS)
  5. Dental Assistant – Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) – Certified Dental Assistant (CDA)


Career Stepping Stones

Choosing among the various allied health careers such as a medical office assistant, medical billing and coding, or dental office assistant diploma courses could be the steppingstone you need to find the best career fit that caters to your interests, goals, and needs.


Any of these courses will give you a background in medical terminology and intrapersonal skills.


The information and career certificate that comes alongside the course will not only provide you with the necessary resources to enter the workforce prepared to serve the patients you come in contact with but allow you to even pursue a future career in another position such as management, nursing, or as a doctor.


Get Started

Blackstone Career Institute offers the five different allied health programs listed above at an affordable rate, with a flexible schedule that is tailored to meet your lifestyle needs.

Each course is guided by an adjunct faculty member who has experience in the field and current textbook resources to provide you with the necessary tools for a successful career.

Review the course descriptions here or meet the faculty members here.

To learn more about what allied health course is right for you, talk with an admissions representative today!


Adjunct Blogger

Written by Laura Conaway