The knowledge of a doctor, paramedic, or nurse directly affects the quality of healthcare that they’re providing. This is something that healthcare institutions are aware of, something that patients understand, and something that even these healthcare workers know. This means that both your career and your ethical standpoint heavily depend on your education.
Now, the healthcare industry is peculiar, seeing as how it rapidly advances, which means that some of the medical facts that you know may no longer be valid. The only way to stay up-to-date with all the new developments in the field of medical science is to actually continuously improve.
Healthcare Is Constantly Evolving
Healthcare is one of the fields that’s evolving the quickest. The pharmaceutical industry has new medications on a yearly basis, new treatments and procedures are developed as we speak, and all of this needs to be incorporated into medical science.
Just imagine someone who finished medical school in the 1980s (even Summa cum laude) but who never touched a medical book or manual since. How well-versed would they be to treat patients in 2022? While this is a bit of an extreme example, it perfectly illustrates the point.
In order to keep your skills sharp and what you know relevant, it’s essential that your keep improving your knowledge. This is also important in order to provide your patients with up-to-date healthcare and do the best you can for them.
It’s Your Legal Obligation
Another thing you need to bear in mind is that keeping up with your education in the healthcare field is your legal obligation. You see, there’s a certain number of educational points that you have to gather every year in order to renew your license. You get a set number of points for every course you hear, every scientific work you submit, etc.
Now, while this is mandatory, which means that you don’t really have much to think about, it’s easy to see how it can help with your own resolve to continue with your education. Namely, it’s essential that you understand that the hardest thing about education is its discontinuation. It’s really hard to prepare for an exam when the last time you did so was years ago. By pursuing some form of continuous education, it’s easy to do so outside of the mandatory norm, as well.
It’s Easier Than Ever Before
Other than just looking at legal ramifications, it’s also important to mention that, due to the availability of online courses and online medical certificate programs, education is more accessible than ever before. While this may not sound like a reason, it’s important to keep in mind that it destroys at least one of the biggest excuses against this type of career development.
Via online education, you no longer even have to go across the state in order to get access to the best education available. You can do it from the comfort of your own room. These certificates are recognized and valid in all institutions that you want to apply for and you can earn them in a matter of hours and days.
It Gives You More Options
Let’s say you want to pivot or specialize. Well, you’ll quickly find that it’s nearly impossible to get anywhere without acquiring new skills and earning new certificates. All the top establishments are looking for specialists, people with specific experience, and licenses for industry-specific healthcare services.
In the past, you were somewhat restricted to the local sources of education, now, you have the ability to pursue any course and listen to any expert you want. Today, you have the privilege of taking a course by a renowned physician without going through too much logistical effort (long-distance travel and accommodation). Now, you’re no longer restricted to local sources of knowledge.
Improving Your Marketability
Other than the fact that it’s your responsibility as a practitioner to keep up with your education, the truth is that your marketability as an expert also depends on your education. You see, when applying for a new position, you’ll have to put some of these things on your CV. Also, when advertising your own practice, it’s always helpful to list all your educational accomplishments there.
Aside from just showing that you’re an expert, it’s also showing that you’re someone willing to self-improve. This also provides your future employer with the idea that you, as an employee, provide a great value for your salary. Namely, they get you with your currently impressive resume but they can also count on the fact that you’ll grow as a professional in the future, as well. It’s a win-win scenario for them.
Calming Your Own Conscience
For a lot of healthcare professionals, there’s one question towering above all else “Could I have done more?”. Now, while it’s impossible to resolve this for good, it’s also important to stress that the more you know, the more options you’ll be aware of. Also, the quality of the healthcare that you provide will be substantially harder. What better way to answer this question than to actually make yourself able to do more?
Other than this, your patients greatly benefit from your increased knowledge. This means that it is no longer just a question of pragmatism but one of your own professional ethics. You owe it to your patients to provide them with the best care available. It’s really as simple as that.
In the end, continuous education in healthcare is essential for a number of reasons. These reasons are material, ethical, as well as those related to professional pride and personal gratifications. So, to sum it up, the reasons are abundant while the excuses are almost non-existent.
Sure, in order to progress your career, you would have to self-improve regardless of the field. In healthcare, the biggest difference lies in the fact that the stakes are a lot higher. In other words, medicine is a science that you can never “learn”. Those who decide to get involved in it need to understand that they’ve made a lifetime commitment.