Medical and Dental School Leaver Jobs - Careers Guide

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If you like the idea of helping people and making a difference in their lives when it matters most, then a career in the medical profession is just the thing.Medical and dental

Not everyone who works in this field is a doctor - in fact, doctors couldn't do what they do so well without a whole network of staff who help a patient from the moment they phone 999 or enter a hospital to the moment they've finished being treated. Similarly, a dentist's office also employs people other than dentists, like administrators, dental nurses and dental hygienists.

What’s it all about? TOP ^

Over 2.1 million people work in the health sector in the UK, with most working as nurses and medical practitioners. You may find that when you start working in the field, you want to add to your skills to move into a certain area of medicine, or a role with more responsibility. You'll find natural skills and interests that you didn’t know you had.

For this reason, and to help you move into a medical career more quickly - it's helpful if you can build up experience by volunteering for organisations like St John Ambulance and the British Red Cross.

This can be a high-pressure career, particularly when split-second decisions can mean the difference between life and death. However, it's incredibly rewarding to be able to help people in such a huge way. If you work in a hospital, you'll probably work rotating shifts that could be at any time during the day or night. If you work in a private practice, your hours are likely match the time that the office is open. Continued training is essential to understand new techniques and medications.

What will I earn? TOP ^

During training, doctors can make over £20,000. Their salary after training depends on their speciality. Nurses can start off around £15,000, and make over £30,000 as they become experienced - this is similar for midwives. Carers can earn from £12,000-£20,000. Hospital administrators earn £13,000-£18,000.

Where can I work? TOP ^

Medical and dental professionals are always in demand across the UK. You could work in several strands of the industry, from private practices to NHS roles. You could specialise in a particular field of medicine, such as surgery or research. You could aim to become a consultant or specialist, or simply work in your local community as a GP.

The options for a career in medicine and dentistry are wide-ranging and different.

What skills will I need to work in medical and dental industries? TOP ^

It might be obvious, but you need to like being around people, with a personality that invites trust and ease. Taking pride in your work is essential, as that will make you better at what you do. Good organisation, self-motivation and a passion for your job will help you progress through further training and higher roles.

As medicine is a vocational degree, the skills you learn on your degree will be all about teaching you how to diagnose, treat and care for patients with various illnesses and ailments. However, you will also need to develop personal and professional skills that will be necessary for a career in medicine.

Excellent communication skills are vital in medical roles, as you will be dealing with nervous and potentially upset patients.
Some skills that would be useful for a graduate medicine or dentistry role include:

What entry level medical and dental jobs can I do?TOP ^

It’s almost impossible to get into the medical and dental professions without a qualification, unless you want to work in administration or as a porter. Consequently, most school leavers will need to take A Levels and a lengthy university degree before being able to get into the industry.

Here are some entry level medical and dental jobs you can get after your degree:

  • Certified nursing assistant
  • Laboratory technician
  • Dental assistant
  • Pharmacy technician
  • Medical assistant
Browse all Medical and Dental jobs for this guide