Many people often get into a medical career path because they love the idea of helping people and the money, they make from it. However, they don’t realize the amount of stress, problems it causes your body, and the long hours you must work. People that seek a new job after working as a physician assistant want to leave this path because of burnout mainly. The other problem people face is a lack of opportunities when they move. Another main reason is the pay. Some careers pay more, and you deal with less stress and fewer hours. Other jobs provide a better work/life balance. Luckily, we have found non clinical PA jobs you may want to check out!

1. Wellness Coach

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $28,585. Median annual salary $46,133. Top 10% earn $74,454 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 17% by 2030 (much faster than average)

Wellness coaches empower people to make changes for their health. As a coach, you will need to create a health plan with the help of your clients. You’ll take their medical history, their problems, goals, and plans to adhere to their goals. Clients may need guidance and education on proper eating or exercise. Clients often seek wellness coaches for motivation and to keep them on track.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong knowledge of health, diet, nutrition, and exercise
  • Organizational skills
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Up to date knowledge of nutrition and exercise
  • Knowledge of basic psychology concepts helpful
  • Patience and adaptability for clients

2. Technical Writer

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $53,500. Median annual salary $69,365. Top 10% earn $101,500 as of May 2021

Job Growth: 12% by 2030 (faster than average)

Technical writers typically work on a contract or freelance. They can use the degree they obtained to write about subjects. For example, a physician’s assistant may write about their experiences, their duties, or guides. You may have to write for a blog, journal articles, articles for websites, or manuals. Technical writers may have to communicate the information they write to various audiences. You may have to use your writing skills to “dumb” down a subject for the average reader to understand.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong IT skills
  • Copywriting and editing skills
  • Expert knowledge of the topic they’re writing about
  • Organizational skills
  • Highly meticulous
  • Exceptional written communication

3. Medical Researcher

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $50,500. Median annual salary $83,231. Top 10% earn $121,000 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 17% by 2030 (much faster than average)

Depending on your role in medical research, you may conduct experiments, analyze and collect data, conduct surveys, or present findings to other department heads. Medical researchers typically study diseases, medical issues, or medications. Many medical researchers often have a master’s or Ph.D. However, as a physician’s assistant, you can work under the supervision of a doctor and participate in the research. Many PAs often switch to this career because of the hours.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong organizational skills
  • Excellent math and science skills
  • Strong communication (written and verbal) skills
  • Analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Highly meticulous

4. First Assistants

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $43,000. Median annual salary $63,000. Top 10% earn $202,000 + as of September 2021

Job Growth: 9% by 2030 (as fast as average)

First assistants work alongside medical professions in surgeries. They help the surgeons with smaller tasks like obtaining equipment, opening or closing wounds, clean equipment and wounds, and dress wounds. Some may even choose to specialize in certain types of operations. Many of these jobs require a bachelor’s degree but more specialized medicine will require an advanced degree. You will work long hours and be on your feet for long periods.

Transferable Skills:

  • Organizational skills
  • High stamina
  • Ability to maintain composure and a strong stomach
  • Highly meticulous
  • Strong communication skills

5. Clinical Training Preceptors

Salary Range: Bottom 25% earn $24,000. Median annual salary $73,619. Top 10% earn $194,500 as of July 2021

Job Growth: 8% by 2030 (much faster than average)

These preceptors help train and teach other PA students. They will monitor the student’s progress and the student’s activity. Preceptors must arrange clinical rotations and supervise them while they complete them. During these rotations, they must be aware of what the student practices, so they don’t practice beyond their level. When a preceptor arranges a rotation, they must include a typical hospital schedule where students work varying shifts and days to assimilate them to the environment. They provide orientations to new students and help assist with any questions a student may have. As a preceptor, you will also evaluate and offer feedback to students in your program.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Excellent documentation and organizational skills
  • Ability to have patience for new students as they learn
  • Ability to work flexible shifts
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Knowledge of the newest medical practices and laws

6. Medical Science Liaison

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $38,500. Median annual salary $140,763. Top 10% earn $187,000 as of July 2021

Job Growth: 4% by 2030 (as fast as average)

Medical science liaisons (MSL) typically have many years of experience or a higher education level. An MLS works for various companies in the medical field. PAs who want into this field should contact pharmaceutical companies. You will ensure products are used correctly, advise on treatment advancements, and provide clinical data. This job requires heavy networking and traveling. You will attend conferences, consult with medical professionals, and host/participate in advisory boards. Many entry-level provide sales and marketing training.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong IT skills
  • Flexibility for travel
  • Networking skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Knowledge of the industry, new concepts, pharmaceuticals, and scientific literature

7. Anesthesia Technician

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $37,957. Median annual salary $65,210. Top 10% earn $84,500 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 9% by 2030 (fast as average)

You will need to check your state’s requirements but typically, you will need a two-year degree, certification, or specialize in anesthesia in your PA program. These technicians will check the anesthesia carts for the necessary medication, replace any empty tanks, disinfect machines, and prepare transducers. The type of duties you have will vary based on your experience or the state you live in.

Transferable Skills:

  • Some IT skills
  • Strong communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Highly meticulous
  • Strong decision-making skills
  • Ability to maintain composure in stressful situations
  • Knowledge of biomedical equipment

8. Clinical Care Coordinator

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $27,000. Median annual salary $52,000. Top 10% earn $79,000 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 32% by 2030 (much faster than average)

A clinical care coordinator is responsible for the case management of patients. They ensure patients receive timely care, efficient care, and support services. You will listen to patients and their families when they offer feedback or complaints. The main duty is to act as a liaison between the patient and personnel. You will provide consultation to the patients and families. If necessary, you may have to follow up on referrals, complete home visits, or visits their current residence to ensure they are receiving the necessary care.

Transferable Skills:

  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Listening skills
  • Organizational skills
  • IT skills required
  • Empathy and patience

9. Clinical Manager

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $55,000. Median annual salary $69,541. Top 10% earn $95,000 as of July 2021

Job Growth: 32% by 2030 (much faster than average)

Clinical managers ensure the department they manage meets standards and oversees daily department activities. Duties for a clinical manager vary depending on the facility. Generally, they set schedules, goals, budgets, and recruit new staff. Many implement policies and work to increase the efficiency of patient care. Clinical managers work closely with their staff members and medical professionals.

Transferable Skills:

  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Extensive knowledge of policies and procedures of the facility, state, and federal laws
  • Strong Organizational skills
  • Problem-solving and decision-making skills

10. Adjunct Professor for Community Colleges

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $24,672. Median annual salary $89,005. Top 10% earn $242,0000 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 12% by 2030 (faster than average)

An adjunct professor is a part-time professor for a college or university. Now, you won’t get to work for an institution that distributes four-year degrees without a master’s, but you can work for community colleges with a bachelor’s degree. You can teach introductory classes, sciences, healthcare, or any extra niches you have in the field. You will be required to teach more than one class per year and don’t carry the same responsibilities that full-time professors do.

Transferable Skills:

  • Exceptional communication, social, and presentation skills
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Strong IT skills
  • Patience
  • Good documentation skills

11. EKG Technician

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $24,000. Median annual salary $41,388. Top 10% earn $68,000 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 14% by 2030 (much faster than average)

EKG technicians are responsible for administering tests on a patient’s cardiovascular system. They may test for purposes like diagnostic, therapeutic, or research. As an EKG technician, you will take and record the patient’s medical history. They will prepare the patient for a procedure and answer any questions they may have. You will have to be familiar with and know how to operate the equipment to conduct tests. The images that display will be checked by you to determine if the images are clear enough and interpret findings for the doctor.

Transferable Skills:

  • Excellent written and communication skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Proficient interpersonal skills
  • Physical stamina
  • Knowledge of biomedical equipment

12. Clinical Advisor

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $55,000. Median annual salary $66,470. Top 10% earn $90,000 as of September 2021

Job Growth:32% by 2030 (much faster than average)

Clinical advisors make recommendations to non-clinical staff on medical issues. They will guide on how to care for high-risk patients. They don’t always work in hospitals and work for pharmaceutical companies, health care facilities, or other organizations. A new machine may come into the facility, and you may have to teach staff and retailers how to use it and who it’s used for. Some government agencies employ clinical advisors to create curriculum and information on health issues for community members. Many former registered nurses often take to this field, but the only requirement is a four-year degree in a medical-related field.

Transferable Skills:

  • Highly meticulous
  • Good communication and interpersonal skills
  • Patience
  • Project management skills
  • Leadership skills
  • Biomedical knowledge

13. Medical/Health Informatics Specialist

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $45,000. Median annual salary $107,263. Top 10% earn $215,000 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 9% (as fast as average)

Medical/health informatics specialists analyze the data provided to them from other healthcare providers and services. They optimize the delivery too. They take that patient data and develop information systems and procedures. They provide their findings to access the information. These specialists will work closely with IT professionals to improve the way they gather and generate data. The goal of a medical/health informatics specialist is to improve the business aspect of healthcare and the services.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong IT skills
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Problem-solving and analytic skills
  • Math, statistics, and data analysis skills
  • Strong communication (verbal and written) and interpersonal skills

14. Pharmaceutical Sales Representative

Salary Range: Bottom 10% $73,000. Median annual salary $91,977. Top 10% earn $127,000 as of September 2021

Job Growth: 5% by 2030 (slower than average)

A pharmaceutical sales representative works with doctors, hospitals, or private organizations. Their main goal is to sell medicine or medical device to whomever they’re set to visit. You will schedule a meeting with a medical professional and tell them about the drug (side effects, use, effectiveness, research). You will even leave samples behind for patients to try. While you can have a degree in any field, a PA degree will help you better explain the pharmaceutical to medical professionals. You may already have a network built up to sell to.

Transferable Skills:

  • Some IT skills
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
  • Strong written communication
  • Good documentation skills
  • Sales experience
  • Extensive knowledge of the products you’re selling and healthcare

15. Patient Observer

Salary Range: Bottom 10% earn $29,000. Median annual salary $42,466. Top 10% earn $81,000 as September 2021

Job Growth: The BLS doesn’t specifically collect information on this job.

Patient observers are healthcare workers that sit with a patient when they need monitoring or special care. Your main duty as a patient observer is to ensure the patient doesn’t hurt themselves and attend to any needs they have. In hospitals, you typically will sit with psychiatric patients, disorientated, or combative patients. You will make sure they don’t harm themselves, leave their room, or pull any devices out. Sometimes, you’ll assistance patients that need to get up, move, or need assistance with a task. Typically, nurses will take this job because facilities prefer prior medical experience. However, as a PA you will have the necessary skills and face-to-face clinical experience.

Transferable Skills:

  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Excellent problem-solving skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Listening skills
  • Strong critical thinking skills
  • Prior medical experience in a client-facing setting

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the second careers for retired physician assistants?

Many retired physician assistants tend to be worth as healthcare consultants, sales, teaching, or as a medical science liaisons. These jobs allow for greater flexibility than a physician assistant job.

What are the side gig ideas for physician assistants?

Teaching and technical writing are great side jobs for physician assistants. They give flexibility and decent money. You can also choose to work in jobs like EMT or for insurance companies as an advisor.

What are work from home jobs for physician assistants?

You can do your physician assistant job from your home. However, you can conduct technical writing, online customer service roles, or medical/health informatics from the comfort of your home.

Final Thoughts

Many people complete their degrees and start their new job. They sometimes quickly realize this isn’t the type of job they’re suited for. They may not like the hours, patients, or pay. You didn’t waste all your time and money getting your degree. You can transition into a new career with your physician assistant degree because many of your skills, experience, and education transfer into other career paths. Don’t be afraid to make the switch today!

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