Appreciation of those who lend a helping hand when their fellow humans are at their most vulnerable has never been so high.
If there’s anything the challenging circumstances of recent years have taught us, it’s that health professionals are true heroes, helping to support the health and wellbeing of communities.
Applauded around the world for helping humanity at the most testing of times, the value of healthcare workers has never been more relevant.
“They might not wear capes, but they are fighting to improve lives,” says Dr Amanda Cottle-Quinn from UQ’s School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work.
“When people say they want a rewarding and varied career, I don’t think you can look past the type of roles available in healthcare and rehabilitation services.
“Two important qualities of healthcare professionals are compassion and resilience. Compassion is considered a fantastic quality and along with adaptability and flexibility these are very much nurtured and encouraged.
Dr Cottle-Quinn is a lecturer in nursing and she says that people’s perceptions of what is involved in nursing is only part of a much bigger picture.
“I say to students when they first start the program that their pre-conceived notion of what nurses do is likely only 10 per cent of what it fully encompasses,” Dr Cottle-Quinn says.
“There is so much more you can and will achieve and you’ll learn so much about your capabilities and become a more confident, resilient, strategic and assured person as a result. The scope for personal growth is amazing.”
Healthcare can take you in multiple directions, providing exciting prospects for specialisation or cross collaboration, as well as opportunities for progression. Along with nursing, programs such as pharmacy and occupational therapy also prepare students for a vital and rewarding career improving the health and wellbeing of others.
“The role of pharmacists is constantly evolving, and their place within the healthcare team is critical to ensure quality use of medicines in a range of settings,” says Dr Jacqueline Bond from the School of Pharmacy.
“Pharmacists of the future are learning to be scientists with a heart. Students will have to handle a complex system of medications, what we call polypharmacy.”
Associate Professor in Occupational Therapy, Jodie Copley, says occupational therapy is concerned with the whole person, their physical skills and their mental wellbeing.
“Students will learn to not just understand a person’s challenges, but what gives them purpose in their day-to-day lives. The end goal is empowering people and helping them find what makes their lives meaningful.”
Want to become a health hero? See the range of study paths available in health at UQ.