Healthcare professions are not only lucrative, but they also pay well. It is one of the few professions in Nigeria you are assured a job and a salary that is well above the minimum wage as soon as you graduate. A career in the medical field will not make you rich, but it will be enough to settle your bills and necessities.
This field is not only comprised of doctors and nurses, there are many more members of the medical field a lot of people may not know about. They too are paid well above the national minimum wage, and even if their starting salaries may be low, their salaries tend to go up with experience. The sector of employment of healthcare professionals will determine their salaries. Those working at federal government hospitals or healthcare facilities tend to earn more than their counterparts working at state government, local government or private hospitals.
Top 10 medical and healthcare jobs in Nigeria
Many healthcare professions are well-paid. Among them, below are the top 10:
Doctors are the big guns in the healthcare industry. They are among the most respected and honoured professions in the whole world, and in hospitals, they are the most valued. Every member of the medical workforce is important but the doctor is the heart, soul and mind of the hospital.
Without them, no patient will be cured of their illness. Doctors are involved in the whole process of diagnosing and treating patients. The duties of a doctor mainly involve diagnosing and treating the illnesses of their patients by ordering diagnostic tests and prescribing medications. Some doctors perform surgeries and other interventions to ensure that their patients are cured of their illnesses.
Doctors are the highest paid in the healthcare field with an average salary of N225,000 per month according to mySalaryscale. This is just the average as the salaries of doctors can be way higher than this. Consultants represent the minority of doctors who have specialized in a particular field. As such, they are paid quite well with an estimated salary of at least N500,000 per month.
The salary of doctors depends on several factors including experience, position, and sector of employment. Federal government hospitals typically pay better than state government and local government hospitals. Some prominent private hospitals like Lagoon Hospital and Eko Hospital in Lagos pay just as much or even better than some government hospitals. However, private hospitals typically pay less than government hospitals.
In regards to experience, Medicine is a field where you get better as you see more patients and learn from more senior doctors, which is why the salaries of doctors tend to go up with experience. You can not learn everything you need to know about medicine in medical school. Most of what doctors know about patient care is learnt as they study under their superiors in hospitals.
Dentists are medical professionals that diagnose and treat diseases relating to the teeth or gums. On average, dentists earn N179,000 per month according to mySalaryscale. Their salaries depend on several factors including experience and the sector they are working in.
Just like doctors, dentists can specialize in a particular field, thereby increasing their earning potential. The more work experience a dentist has, the higher their salary.
Physiotherapists are healthcare professionals that treat patients with illnesses, injuries and deformities that impact movement. They do this through physical means like exercise, massages, heat treatment and electrotherapy.
They also educate and advise patients on how to manage their disabilities and assist them with pain management and injury prevention.
Physiotherapists are paid an average of N151,000 per month according to mySalaryscale. Their salaries also tend to go up with experience and may be higher or lower depending on the sector they are working in.
If doctors are the heart, soul and mind of the hospital, then nurses are the backbone, and without them, everything would fall apart. If doctors are left alone to do everything involved in managing the illness of a patient, they would die of exhaustion even before their patients die of their diseases. There are so many things to be done in the care of a patient, and nurses are there to assist doctors in doing this.
Nurses are healthcare professionals that are trained and certified to promote and maintain health but are unable to diagnose illnesses, prescribe drugs or direct treatment of illnesses. They provide care to patients under the supervision of physicians, surgeons, and dentists. The duties of a nurse are limited but numerous and essential in the care of patients.
On average, nurses receive a salary of N107,000 per month according to mySalaryscale and this depends on their experience, the certification they have and their sector of employment.
Pharmacists, also known as chemists, are healthcare professionals that dispense medication prescribed by physicians and provide information to patients on their uses and side effects. They have a perfect understanding of how drugs work, their uses and their side effects so they can advise physicians and other healthcare workers on the dosage, interaction and side effects of medications. Pharmacists are not confined to a hospital setting, they can work in a wide range of settings including long-term care facilities, pharmaceutical industries, and various government parastatals.
Pharmacists are also among the highest-paid in the healthcare field. They receive an average of N136,000 per month according to mySalaryscale which may be higher or lower depending on several factors including experience and sector of employment. The more experience a pharmacist has, the higher their salary.
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Midwives are healthcare professionals who provide care and support to women during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period. Midwives ensure that expecting mothers are healthy, and their babies are growing well.
During the labour period, they ensure that every complication that arises is managed effectively and the baby is delivered safely. After delivery, they ensure that both the babies and the new mothers are healthy.
According to mySalaryscale, the average salary for midwives is N141,000 per month. This may be higher or lower depending on several factors including their experience and sector of employment.
7. Clinical psychologists
Clinical psychologists are responsible for the diagnosis and treatment of patients with mental, emotional and behavioural abnormalities. They also develop and implement treatment plans and monitor patient progress. Psychologists are distinct from psychiatrists who are medical doctors specialized in psychiatry.
The major difference between them is that psychiatrists mainly prescribe drugs to treat mental illnesses, while psychologists typically don’t prescribe drugs but use other means like psychotherapy to manage mental illnesses.
According to mySalaryscale, psychologists earn an average of N197,000 per month which may be higher or lower depending on their experience and sector of employment.
Radiographers are healthcare professionals who assist in the diagnosis of various diseases by performing and interpreting medical imaging. They use high-tech medical equipment to image the human anatomy and pinpoint abnormalities. They are responsible for taking X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, ultrasounds, and other diagnostic imaging.
The salary of a radiographer differs depending on their experience and sector of employment. According to mySalaryscale, they earn an average of N158,000 per month.
Optometrists should not be confused with ophthalmologists and opticians. Ophthalmologists are medical doctors that have specialized in the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases, performing surgeries on the eye, and prescribing medications and eye-wears.
Opticians use prescriptions from ophthalmologists and optometrists to design and fit lenses and frames for eyeglasses, contact lenses and other devices used to correct eyesight, but are not licensed to diagnose and treat illnesses. Optometrists perform various functions relating to the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases including performing eye exams and vision tests, prescribing corrective lenses and medications for some eye diseases, and detecting some eye abnormalities.
According to mySalaryscale, the average salary for optometrists is N107,000 per month. Of course, this may vary depending on the experience of the optometrist and their sector of work.
10. Medical laboratory scientists
These healthcare professionals are extremely crucial in the medical setting as they help doctors with their diagnoses. They receive specimens and samples of patients and run tests on them. They are trained in the correct methods to perform tests on samples, analyze the results and present their findings to physicians.
These findings will help the physician to diagnose diseases, direct treatment, as well as prevent and monitor disease progression.
Medical laboratory scientists are also among the best-paid in the healthcare setting. They receive an average of N137,000 per month according to mySalaryscale.
The healthcare field is comprised of various healthcare professionals that work in tandem to diagnose and treat ailments that afflict their patients. Though doctors are the most important in any healthcare facility, other professionals are also crucial in aiding the recovery of patients.
The healthcare industry is among the best paid in the world and for good reason. Their work is demanding and if they fail, lives will be lost.
A job in the healthcare field will not make you rich, but to an extent, it will enable you to live comfortably in Nigeria.