So, you’re sold that Health and Social Care is the path for you. That’s great and all, but where on earth do you start...
- Help improve public health by promoting healthy habits and educating people about health issues
- You'll need to build knowledge about health issues and be a good people person
- Opportunities to progress into management or become freelance consultant
As a health promotion specialist, you will work with people who need to adopt a healthier way of life, giving them advice and information.//=nl2br( $texts['main'] )?> //=$texts['hidden'];?>
- Promoting healthy eating and regular exercise
- Advising of the dangers of smoking or excessive drinking
- Giving information about the risk of coronary heart disease and cancers
- Raising awareness of mental health, sexual health, and drug misuse
You may also:
- Be involved in research
- Produce publicity materials
- Organise exhibition and events
- Run training courses and workshops
- Provide information and advice to managers in health authorities and local councils
You'll be office based, but you may also work in the community and travel to health centres, hospitals, offices and sports centres. You might work with other health professionals, like doctors, nurses and health trainers, with people on a one-to-one basis, or with specific groups like older people or people with disabilities at schools, workplaces or prisons.
This role would be ideal for someone with administration skills, excellent verbal communication, knowledge of English language, teaching and the ability to design courses, customer service skills, sensitivity and understanding, initiative, and the ability to work well with others.
You could do a degree in a subject like health promotion, public health policy, behavioural science, or health studies. Other subjects like psychology, social sciences and education may also be accepted by employers.
You may also be able to do a public health practitioner degree apprenticeship.
You can apply directly to employers if you have relevant skills and knowledge needed for this role. You'll usually need a qualification in an area like medicine, nursing, teaching or social work. Experience of working with communities can also be beneficial.
You might find it useful to get some paid or voluntary experience in the health or care sector before you apply for a course. Contacting the health promotion unit or voluntary services co-ordinator at your local NHS trust can give you further advice.
With experience, you could move into a more senior role and have more responsibility for planning projects and strategies. If you have a postgraduate qualification, you could move into a role where you'll have responsibility for managing projects and other health promotion specialists. You could also work as a freelance consultant.