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The non-profit sector has been one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 crisis. Many of society’s most essential enterprises have been impacted by the pandemic, with healthcare industries in particular affected by increased demand: hospitals, aged care, disability services, out-of-home care – the list goes on.

Prior to the current health crisis, this sector was already in a period of rapid growth, especially in the local area. Things like developments in the NDIS and an increasingly ageing population meant more and more job opportunities were becoming available. But now more than ever, the healthcare industry needs workers to fight the coronavirus pandemic and keep vulnerable populations safe and cared for.

Professional, care worker and support roles are all highly sought-after as we move further into 2020, so let’s take a closer look at seven different types of in-demand healthcare jobs.

1. Emergency response casual roles

About the role

In addition to medical staff, hospitals employ a variety of support staff, often on a casual basis. The pandemic has led to an increase in demand for these types of roles, including staff in areas such as:

  • Cleaning
  • Laundry
  • Food preparation and service
  • Porters (patient lifting and transport)

You’ll usually need to have completed at least a Certificate II or III in order to undertake these hospital support roles.

Available training includes:

  • Certificate II in Health Support Services
  • Certificate III in Health Support Services
  • Certificate III in Health Services Assistance

Local employers

  • Public hospitals (John Hunter, Calvary Mater, Maitland, Cessnock, Kurri Kurri)

2. Aged care worker

About the role

As an aged care worker, you’ll be assisting elderly people with their daily activities. Working in a residential aged care facility or at a private home, you’ll provide support with personal care such as bathing, dressing and eating, and may also be involved in delivering activity and lifestyle programs.

Prerequisites and training

To work in aged care, you’ll need a TAFE qualification at minimum, and will undertake on-the-job training that may begin while you’re still completing your studies.

Available training includes:

  • Certificate II in Community Services
  • Certificate III in Community Services
  • Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing)
  • Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing, Home and Community)
  • Certificate IV in Ageing Support
  • Certificate IV in Leisure and Health
  • Diploma of Leisure and Health
  • Diploma of Community Services (Case Management)
  • Bachelor of Community Services
  • Bachelor of Dementia Care

Local employers

3. Disability support worker

About the role

As a disability support worker, you’ll be providing care for people with physical and/or intellectual disabilities. Usually working within clients’ homes, you’ll undertake domestic and personal care tasks, assist with outings and activities, provide companionship, and generally help clients stay safe, healthy, happy and socially engaged.

Prerequisites and training

While it is possible to seek employment in this sector without formal qualifications or training, the majority of employers will require at least a Certificate III qualification.

Available training includes:

  • Certificate III in Individual Support (Disability)
  • Certificate III in Aquatics and Community Recreation
  • Certificate IV in Disability
  • Bachelor of Social Work

Local employers

4. Home and community care worker

About the role

As a home and community care worker you’ll provide support to a variety of people within the community (including the elderly and people with disabilities) by attending them at home. In-home support may range from transporting clients to appointments, to preparing meals, tidying, cleaning and bathing, to simply providing companionship.

Prerequisites and training

You’ll generally be required to complete, at minimum, a Certificate III, but can always further your studies and career opportunities with a Bachelor degree.

Available training includes:

  • Certificate III in Individual Support (Home and Community)
  • Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing, Home and Community)
  • Bachelor of Social Work

Local employers

5. Mental health support worker

About the role

Physical health is the primary focus during a pandemic – but with society turned upside down and lockdown measures in place, many people will be struggling with their mental health as well, meaning workers in this industry are in high demand. As a mental health support worker, you’ll be helping clients with mental health problems ranging from anxiety and depression to PTSD.

Prerequisites and training

In many organisations, the minimum requirement for mental health support workers is a Bachelor degree. However, there are short courses and Certificate/Diploma-level qualifications in mental health available for those who wish to specialise within their current role.

Available training includes:

  • Mental Health First Aid (short course)
  • Certificate IV in Mental Health
  • Diploma of Mental Health
  • Bachelor of Nursing
  • Bachelor of Social Work

Local employers

6. Nurse

About the role

Nurses are by far the most in-demand workers in the healthcare industry. They’re an essential part of medical teams in a variety of environments, from hospitals to clinics to aged care facilities. As a Registered Nurse, Endorsed Enrolled Nurse or Assistant in Nursing, you’ll be monitoring, testing and delivering medication to patients; providing patients with assistance in personal care, mobility and communication; preparing patients for procedures and assisting in post-operative care and more.

Prerequisites and training

To become a Registered Nurse in Australia, the minimum qualification is a Bachelor of Nursing. However, there is the option to begin with a Certificate or Diploma qualification. With all qualifications, you will begin nursing work while studying, gaining on-the-job experience and increasing future employment opportunities.

Training available includes:

  • Certificate III in Health Services Assistance
  • Diploma of Nursing
  • Bachelor of Nursing
  • Bachelor of Nursing and Midwifery
  • Bachelor of Science (Nursing)
  • Master of Nursing

Local employers

  • Public hospitals (John Hunter, Calvary Mater, Maitland, Cessnock, Kurri Kurri)
  • Private hospitals (Newcastle, Lingard, Hunter Valley, Charlestown, Lake Macquarie, Warners Bay, Toronto)
  • Smaller private clinics
  • Aged care facilities

7. Pharmacy assistant

About the role

Pharmacies are a highly in-demand service at the best of times, but during a pandemic, they’re busier than ever. As a pharmacy assistant, you’ll be helping customers select and purchase products relating to health and wellbeing, providing advice on non-prescription medication, and assisting with processing of prescriptions.

Prerequisites and training

Formal qualifications aren’t usually required for pharmacy assistant roles, but they may help you secure and succeed in a position. While working as an assistant, you may also wish to pursue higher-level qualifications to become a fully qualified pharmacist.

Available training includes:

  • Certificate II in Community Pharmacy
  • Certificate III in Community Pharmacy
  • Certificate IV in Community Pharmacy Dispensary
  • Certificate IV in Hospital/Health Services Pharmacy Support
  • Bachelor of Pharmacy

Local employers

Throughout Newcastle, Maitland and the Hunter you’ll find a wide range of ‘chain’ pharmacies (such as Doc’s MegaSave, Chemist Warehouse, Priceline etc.) as well as smaller franchises, independently owned pharmacies, and in-hospital pharmacies.

If you’re in search of a healthcare role, or wondering how best to get started in this in-demand industry, get in touch today to find out how GWG can help.

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