The Highest-Paying Healthcare Jobs (Excluding Getting an MD)

If you want to make doctor-level money without getting a medical degree, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that it’s totally possible. The medical field is full of some of the highest-paying healthcare jobs that require special people to fill those roles – special people with special training.

Unfortunately, that’s bad news. The specialized training means you’re still going see some significant hours inside of a classroom as well as plenty of time with your nose in a book. 

Have no fear, it all pays off in the end. So, for anyone looking for the highest-paying healthcare jobs, keep reading.  

Genetic Counselor

This is one of the newest jobs in the American healthcare industry and requires very special training. Counselors interpret genetic tests to inform patients about chronic and genetic diseases and conditions that may plague them later in life.

Genetic counselors are needed in a variety of healthcare institutions, such as hospitals, diagnostic labs, and state and local agencies.

Physical Therapist

Pain management has become the central focus point of many medical practices over the past two decades and will only see an increase in the need for physical therapists. PTs come with a median salary of around $88,000 per year but will work directly with patients to increase their quality of life.

Therapists help patients manage pain and increase their ability to move as well as the range of motion patients can access in their everyday lives.

Biomedical Engineer

This job is just what it sounds like. If a career in the healthcare industry is for you, but you’re not so sure you can handle every single aspect of it, you can still help people on a daily basis through the equipment used to ensure their care and safety.

Biomedical engineers are responsible for healthcare solutions using equipment and software. Advances in technology will require at least a bachelor’s degree for this role, but will also require the engineer to stay up to speed on the latest in medical technology.

Medical and Health Services Manager

These are the executives that make hospitals and doctors’ offices tick. They go by a few names, be they healthcare executives, administrators, or healthcare managers, they run the business side of the healthcare industry.

Becoming a healthcare services manager (or whatever title the facility they run bestow upon them) requires at least a bachelor’s degree. More often than not, the best-paying roles require a master’s degree.

Physician Assistant

The term “assistant” doesn’t do this role justice. Physician Assistants are highly educated and must pass rigorous testing that leads to getting Masters-level degrees. 

This is one of the fastest-growing and highest-paying healthcare jobs in America today with an estimated growth rate of as high as 37 percent over the next five years and can earn as much as $108,000 per year. 

Advanced Practice Registered Nurses

APRNs include any kind of specialized nursing care, and would normally also include nurse anesthetists. The pay rate for a nurse anesthetist is so far above other APRNs that it seemed appropriate to separate the two disciplines.

Other APRNs provide primary and specialty care directly to patients and include both nurse practitioners and midwives. After becoming a registered nurse, those interested in specializing can attend graduate school and earn as much as $113,000 after passing certification exams.


Everyone must go see the pharmacist at some time or another. The pharmacist doles out the pills and other drugs as prescribed by a physician while advising the same physicians on dosages and potential drug interactions.  

For just a few years spent getting a doctoral degree, pharmacists can make more than $125,000 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That amount makes becoming a pharmacist one of the high-paying healthcare jobs in the US. 

Highest-Paying Healthcare Jobs

Nurse Anesthetist

For upwards of $169,000 per year, a nurse anesthetist will administer anesthesia before surgeries and other procedures while monitoring the patient while under anesthesia. The nurse anesthetist will also ensure the patient recovers from the sedation in the post-operative wards.

Nurse anesthetists can work for any doctor or surgeon who has a need to sedate their patients. To be a nurse anesthetist, a registered nurse will need a graduate school education.

Blake Stilwell

Blake Stilwell is a former Air Force Combat Photojournalist with degrees in Graphic Design, Television & Film, Journalism, Public Relations, International Relations, and Middle Eastern Affairs. He is now a writer and media producer with experience in politics, entertainment, development, nonprofit, military, and government. Blake's work can be seen on, We Are The Mighty, Military Times, Business Insider, Fox News, ABC News, NBC, HBO Sports, the White House, Skillset Magazine, Booze League, and with considerable effort, his mother's fridge. Blake is based in Los Angeles but is often found elsewhere.

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