• Prasanthi Naidoo

The hottest healthcare jobs to get into for 2019

As this draws to a close, the team here at Health Job Hub decided to look ahead to see what career paths would be booming in 2019 and beyond. The healthcare sector encompasses more than just doctors and nurses – although there is a shortage of both of those, meaning they both made our top 10 list - there is also high demand for people to fill a wide range of other positions.

We used data from Statistics Canada, the Labour Force Survey, and Employment and Social Development Canada to compile a short list of jobs that have a low unemployment rate, a high median salary, and robust job growth. All of the jobs ranked here are currently experiencing labour shortages - conditions that are expected to persist at least through 2026.

The top 10 healthcare jobs of the (near) future Dentist

There is a high demand for dentists in Canada right now. These professionals ensure their patients' overall oral health. They examine and treat any issues with their patients' mouth, gums and teeth.

Dentistry is a regulated profession in Canada. In order to practice dentistry, you must obtain a license or permit from the province or territory they wish to practice in. The main requirement to obtain licensure in all Canadian provinces and territories is passing the National Dental Examination Board (NDEB) exams.

The median wage for dentists in Canada is $118,394/ year, and Statistics Canada says that there is a shortage of qualified professionals in this country.

Physician Assistant

Physician assistants can diagnose illnesses, develop and carry out treatments, assist in surgeries, as well as perform many medical procedures and provide guidance for patients. Physician assistants require completion of a university degree in a physician assistant program.

There is an ongoing shortage of these healthcare professionals right now. They earn a median wage of $93,600 in Canada.

Nurse Practitioner

Nurse practitioners are registered nurses with additional certification. Nurse practitioners usually require a master's degree in nursing; or completion of a nursing program with additional advanced or extended primary health care nursing education; and several years of practice as a registered nurse. This extra education allows these professionals to take patient histories, perform physical exams, order labs, analyze lab results, prescribe medicine, authorize treatments and more.

Registration with a regulatory body is required for nurse practitioners in all provinces and territories.

There is a shortage of Nurse Practitioners in Canada that is predicted to continue through 2026. They earn a median wage of $93,600 CAD.


Orthodontists are dental specialists who remedy problems with crooked teeth and improper bites. They examine patients' mouths and jaws to design an orthodontic program for the purposes of helping patients achieve and maintain proper function jaws and also improving the aesthetics of their smiles.

One to four years of pre-dentistry university studies or, in Quebec, completion of a college program in sciences and A university degree from a recognized dental program are required - along with licensing by a provincial or territorial regulatory body.

There median wage in Canada is $118,394. There is currently a shortage of Orthodontists in this country, which Stats Can predicts will last for the next decade.


Pediatricians are doctors concerned with the physical, emotional and social well-being of children. Like all doctors, pediatricians require graduation from an approved medical school and specific specialty training. Completion of the certifying examinations of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and Licensing by the provincial or territorial licensing authority are also required.

They earn a median wage of $277,583 in Canada.

Obstetrician and Gynecologist

Obstetrics/gynecology is a specialty that encompasses medical, surgical, and obstetrical and gynecologic knowledge and skills for the prevention, diagnosis and management of a broad range of conditions affecting women's general and reproductive health.

Graduation from an approved medical school and specific specialty training are required. Statistics Canada does not have enough data to provide a median salary, however, several other sources report an average wage of roughly $240,000 per year for these professionals.

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons (OMFS) perform surgeries on the face, mouth and jaw. These professionals are dentists with at least four years of additional surgery training, so they can do everything from treating facial traumas to fixing cleft lips.

Some OMFS programs are dual degree, meaning that the surgeon earns a dental degree (DDS) as well as a medical degree (MD), plus their graduate degree in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

As the baby boom population ages, there will likely be an increasing demand for the sort of complicated oral and facial treatments and surgeries that these health care professionals offer. They earn a median wage of $295,432.


Physicians look after many aspects of patient health. They examine patients and take their histories, order laboratory tests, X-rays and other diagnostic procedures. They consult with other medical practitioners to evaluate patients' physical and mental health.

They can prescribe medicines and perform and assist in routine surgeries. They inoculate and vaccinate patients to prevent and treat diseases, deliver babies and provide pre-natal and post-natal care, among many other things. They're obstetricians and gynecologists, ER doctors, dermatologists, primary care providers, neurologists and cardiologists, and more.

Graduation from an approved medical school and two to three years of family medicine residency training are required, along with the completion of the qualifying examinations of the Medical Council of Canada and licensing by the provincial or territorial licensing authority.

There is a shortage of physicians in Canada. The average wage for a doctor is roughly $339,000. The amount varies based on doctors' specialties: family physicians make about $271,000 while medical specialists make about $338,000 and surgical specialists are the highest paid at $446,000.

Occupational Therapist

Occupational therapists work with patients to build or restore their abilities to perform the daily tasks of life. They develop and implement treatment programs after observation, interviews and formal assessments with clients.

A university degree in occupational therapy including supervised fieldwork is required or graduation from an occupational therapy program approved by the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT) is accepted in some provinces. (Membership in the national association, Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists, is required in some provinces.)

Stats Can reports that they earn a median wage of $80,545 in this country.

Physical Therapist

Physical therapists work with all sorts of patients – from the disabled, to the elderly, to those recovering from injury or suffering from general pain. They assess patients' physical abilities, administer evaluative tests and procedures, and plan physiotherapy plans.

A university degree in physiotherapy and a period of supervised practical training are required to become a physical therapist in Canada. A licence or registration with a regulatory body is required to practise physiotherapy in all provinces.

Like all of the occupations on this list, there is a shortage of physical therapists in Canada. They earn a median salary of $75,920.

These are the healthcare jobs that offer great demand, positive outlook for the near future, and high wages making them hot career paths to get into right now. However, new trends, demographics, and technologies are creating a host of new, emerging occupations in healthcare. We'll take an in-depth look at those next!

For more details on the outlook, wages, and requirements for career paths in Canada, you can access labour market information from the government of Canada here.

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