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With increasing awareness about public health across the world, new opportunities are opening up for public healthcare professionals. There is a growing need for healthcare experts in developing countries in order to prevent or control diseases and contribute to building a healthy community. Due to poor knowledge of health, poverty these countries suffer from a high incidence of diseases.
It is important to enhance professional competencies to achieve optimum outcome in healthcare in developing countries. This is where well-structured public health degree becomes important.
ECZ Grade 12 graduates looking for a stable career can opt for a public health degree.
Read further to learn why a public health degree is essential and how you can pursue a career in the field.
Why is a public health degree essential in developing countries?
Public health careers focus on community well-being by promoting healthy lifestyle. It is one of the leading health care fields that have seen tremendous growth in recent years.
A relevant degree equips you with a strong foundation and required skills. These skills help you understand and work on a wide range of health issues. The transferable skills allow you to work in various areas, including:
- COVID-19 emergencies
- Firearm safety
- Child and maternity care
- Disease prevention
Professionals equipped with public health degrees use their knowledgeable and training to keep communities healthy and aware, address and prevent pandemics, aid in disaster relief, and help in improving access to healthcare.
Why is public health important?
A Public health degree helps in tackling health crisis
Public health officials are the front-line workers who are ready to handle every emergency. Limiting the spread of COVID-19 and handling medical waste disposal during the Ebola outbreak are some of the examples.
It helps detect any health issues early
Public health expertise, which focuses more on preventing disease than its cure, help in detecting health issues early and effecting quick response that will help in controlling the spread of disease.
It focuses on prolonging the life span
Prevention is better than cure. Public health professionals focus more on preventive solutions so that a community is empowered through good health, and also prevents loss of money. It is far more affordable to prevent a disease than to control and fix it.
A degree in public health helps you grow as a person
A public health expert will constantly gain new skills and experiences and participate in health campaigns and projects, encouraging equity in health, and ensuring that there is no discrimination based on one’s socio-economic background.
It helps you make a global presence
A degree in public health will enable you to gain global presence. You will be formulating public policy and programs to improve health and well-being. Knowledge of data science will help public health professionals conduct region-specific research and achieve best practices in public health, thereby reducing health-related problems in specific locations.
There are two courses that you can take up.
Bachelor of Public Health
What is a Bachelor of Public Health (BPH)?
Bachelor of Public Health degree (BPH) aims at promoting the health and well-being of the general mass. The program helps students acquire the required skills, knowledge, and abilities.
The course is four years long, and it is perfect for those who wish to enter the field of public health. The course includes global subjects and topics in research and project management.
The course encompasses theoretical modules and practical public health experience as well. It also helps prepare students for the MPH program.
Bachelor’s in Public Health: Scope
In the BPH Course, students learn healthcare subjects that focus on,
- Recent developments
- Environmental health
They also learn career-relevant subjects like,
- Human anatomy
- Women and child health
- Health economics
- Disaster management and so much more
Bachelor’s in Public Health : Jobs
From working in public organizations to hospitals, a BPH graduate has many career opportunities. Some of them include:
- Health Education Specialist
- Disease Prevention Specialist
- Emergency Response Planner
- Environmental Health Scientists
- Medical Scientist
- International Health Professional
- Maternal and Child Health Professional
Master of Public Health
What is an MPH degree?
The two-year Master of Public Health Course teaches students how to tackle emergencies. They also learn to collaborate with people across sectors and generate awareness.
Also, a master’s degree enables students with the knowledge and skill to influence health policies. Besides policies, students will also develop solutions to tackle complex health problems. It includes chronic and infectious diseases too.
The following are some of the topics covered in the MPH program.
- Public health practices
- Environmental Health
- Health Policy
- Social and Behavioral Health
An MPH program is an advanced course and is best suited for those with experience in the domain. This specialization course also allows you to take up research.
Master’s in Public Health: Scope
A Master of Public Health is an intensive health science program that opens up high-paying opportunities. Often clinics and hospitals look for candidates having a master’s degree. The degree has long-term salary potential and can create future leaders in the domain.
Master’s in Public Health : Jobs
The career opportunities after MPH becomes more channelized and focussed. A student can go for a wide variety of jobs after finishing their Master’s in Public Health. Some of them are:
- Health Care Administrators
- Policy Advisers
- Community Health Nurse
- Disease Ecologist
- Genetic Counselor
- Wellness Coordinator
If you always look forward to supporting community health, pursuing a career in the sector is the best choice. A degree in public health can assist you in grabbing opportunities in top-level organizations, including the WHO, UN, and World Bank.
In this competitive world, you need to upgrade your skills constantly to welcome fresh opportunities. And getting a degree in this domain will surely help you bring positive changes in healthcare.