Learn about the demand for health care workers

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FISHERSVILLE, Va. -- The health care industry in the Shenandoah Valley offers many employment opportunities, some in areas you may not think of.

(courtesy MGN Online)

WHSV visited the Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences, the Fishersville branch campus of Mary Baldwin College. Mary Baldwin College is a leader in creating partnerships and career pathways throughout the Valley.

The new facility is adjacent to Augusta Health, close to the Wilson Workforce and Rehabilitation Center and numerous nursing home and clinical facilities. Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences’ graduate programs include occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant and an online Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

Through the InDemand careers we have highlighted over the past year, starting on a path with a health care certificate or associate’s degree can support you in achieving your future goals as a health care professional.

"Obviously, when you think of a hospital, you always think about doctors and nurses. Those are critical, and those are always areas. We are recruiting constantly for physicians, bringing new physicians to the community, always recruiting for nurses, but what people don't think about are the other really critical careers in a hospital," said Kathleen Heatwole, vice president for planning and development for Augusta Health.

Augusta Health has seen a lot of growth in the financial area as well.

"We have coding positions that are just key to making our hospital run. We have patient access positions to registration positions," Heatwole said. "As I mentioned, IT has become such a key area for us. We really do see the business end of things as well as the clinical end of things."

At the Sunnyside Communities, a retirement living community, President and CEO Jack Broaddus said baby boomers reaching retirement age will ensure the expansion of the senior care industry.

"All our locations depend very heavily on the local education system to be able to produce the different care components and skill sets we need in order to provide the services to our residents. The community colleges systems, the vo-tech, the universities all deliver some form of care and educational experience to the staff members that we currently employ," said Broaddus.

He added that his industry has plenty of variety, with positions covering many areas.

"Technology has become a great big part of our offerings," Broaddus said. "We have residents that move in today that are very tech-savvy."