As we move into the 21st century, rapid technological and scientific advances in the medical field, along with a large aging population have created high demand for allied health professionals. Currently in Southern Illinois, there are many allied health professionals who deliver high-quality patient care services for the sick, injured or disabled; however, the supply of allied health professionals is not keeping up with demand. Local hospitals report that they are experiencing difficulty recruiting allied health professionals. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the growth rate of new jobs in the health care professions will be twice the rate of job growth in non-healthcare professions. The Bureau also predicts a need for 5.3 million health care workers to fill job openings created by departures and new positions in the next five years.
Allied health is a vast field of health careers comprised of more than 100 health care professions including those offered by Rend Lake College such as Nursing, Occupational Therapy Assisting, Medical Laboratory Technology, Surgical Technology, Therapeutic Massage, and Health Information Technology. Allied health providers are crucial to the health care system as they support, facilitate, and complement the roles of doctors, nurses, and other health care specialists.
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