Highest Paying Healthcare Jobs by Degree Level

The healthcare industry is one of the hottest growing markets in the country right now because of an aging baby-boomer population. Many experts expect that the industry will remain stable, and grow in the next few years.  Because of this, healthcare can indeed offer a lot of job security that many other fields cannot. But healthcare can be an intimidating industry to try and break into because of the education requirements. The good news is there are lots of entry-level positions that don’t require any education or prior experience other than a high school diploma.  Here is a list of thirty of the top jobs by degree level that are expected to be in high demand in the next few years.

Top Paying Healthcare Careers by Education Level

Highest Paying Jobs in Healthcare with a H.S. Diploma or Less

highest paying healthcare jobs with high school diploma

Home Care Aide

  • Annual Salary: $20, 170
  • Hourly wage: $9.70
  • Suggested Education: High school diploma or less
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 1,878,700

A home care aide is an individual that helps people who are elderly, chronically ill, disabled, or impaired in some way in the home environment.  There are no formal education requirements (with some in the field having less than a high school diploma) for home care aides, though some schools offer programs and certificates for those seeking to work as a home care aide for a certified home health agency or hospice.  The need for home care aides is expected to grow by 69 percent in the next seven years.   Typically a home care aide works in a client’s home, helping out with bathing, dressing, and housekeeping.  Depending on the state, a home care aide may be required to check medication, vital signs and more—though these activities are usually performed under the supervision of a nurse.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Home-health-and-personal-care-aides.htm

Medical Assistant

  • Annual Salary: $28,860
  • Hourly wage: $13.87
  • Suggested Education: High school diploma
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 527,600

Medical Assistants are the unsung heroes of the healthcare industry—a position that helps hold practices across the country together and enables physicians and nurses to spend more time with patients.  Most practices will require a high school diploma or its equivalent, and some will require training and certification from formal programs at various community colleges.   The need for medical assistants is expected to grow in the next few years by 31 percent.  Medical assistants are involved in a wide variety of different activities. Often they are assigned administrative tasks in the offices of different practices like bookkeeping, updating patient records, scheduling, and receptionist services. Some are even trained in medical care duties such as taking blood pressure, basic lab work and more.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Medical-assistants.htm

Medical Biller

  • Annual Salary: $34,350
  • Hourly wage: $16.52
  • Suggested Education: High school diploma or less
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 159,000

At some point of the treatment cycle someone has to pay the bill. Medical billers specialize in running the administrative end of the medical practice. While some may work in practices to prepare patient records for billing as well as working with insurance companies, others may work for insurers to process claims from patients and practices. Medical billing requires specialized knowledge in Medicaid, Medicare and other commercial insurance companies.  In some practices, medical assistants handle the responsibilities of the medical biller as part of their responsibilities because medical assistants are typically called upon to fill a wide variety of roles.

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes433021.htm

Nursing Assistant

  • Annual Salary: $24,010
  • Hourly wage: $11.54
  • Suggested Education: High school diploma
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 1,505,300

Nursing assistants are also called orderlies and attendants and are important support to nurses. These essential staff members provide basic care to patients in hospitals and residents of long-term facilities, by cleaning and bathing patients or residents, assisting in toilet use, positioning and transferring patients from beds and wheelchairs, recording patient vitals, and serving meals and helping patients eat. Depending on the level of training they receive, nursing assistants may even help dispense medication.  Generally speaking, nursing assistants don’t require more than a high school diploma, though a basic understanding of nursing is required. This kind of education can be learned at different community college and vocational programs.  Nursing assistant positions in the industry are expected to see 20 percent growth in the next ten years.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nursing-assistants.htm#tab-1

Psychiatric Technicians and Aides

  • Annual Salary: $26,880
  • Hourly wage: $12.92
  • Suggested Education: High school diploma or postsecondary certificate
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 1,878,700

Psychiatric Technicians and aides are directly involved in the mental health aspect of the healthcare industry.  While a formal post-secondary degree is not required, many workers do have a certificate from programs in psychiatric or mental health technology.  As a specialized aide, psychiatric technicians tend to help psychiatrists in observing patient behavior, recording conditions, leading patients in recreational and therapeutic activities, assisting patients in daily living activities, serving meals, and monitoring vital signs.  Technicians and aides vary in their responsibilities. Many technicians and aides can be found working in rehabilitation clinics for drug and alcohol addiction, and thus the work they perform depends on the type of patients they work with. This career is expected to see modest growth in the next 10 years, expanding by approximately 22,000 new jobs.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/psychiatric-technicians-and-aides.htm#tab-1

Highest Paying Jobs in Healthcare for Associate Degrees

highest paying healthcare jobs with high school diploma
Getting an associate’s degree is a great way to start a career in the health care industry. An associate’s degree opens the door on a wide variety of career options, and can be easily obtained from a community college or a vocational school. On top of that, because of the short amount of time required for an associate degree, you will be able to get a quick return on your education investment. With many of these jobs earning average salaries well above $50,000 per year, an associate’s degree is a great investment in your future. The following list of jobs shows some of the best jobs available for those with associate’s degrees.

Dental Hygienist

  • Annual Salary: $68,250
  • Hourly wage: $32.81
  • Suggested Education: Associate’s Degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 181,800

Dental hygienists are responsible for cleaning teeth, examining patients for oral diseases, and educating patients on good oral care.  Typically working in a dentist’s office, they work closely with dentists and dental assistants in their responsibilities.  Becoming a dental hygienist requires an associate’s degree which can be obtained through specialized dental hygienist programs at many community colleges and vocational schools.  On top of the degree, every state in the United States requires hygienists to be licensed.  As a rapidly growing field, the need for this profession is only expected to increase during the next ten years with growth of about 38 percent.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/dental-hygienists.htm#tab-1

Diagnostic Medical Sonographers

  • Annual Salary: $65,380
  • Hourly wage: $30.95
  • Suggested Education: Associate’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 53,700

Diagnostic medical sonographers are specialized technicians that use imaging equipment that utilizes ultrasound, sonogram, or echocardiogram technology to diagnose different medical conditions.  As part of their typical responsibilities, they prepare, maintain, and operate the imaging equipment, as well as provide preliminary findings for physicians.  Diagnostic Medical Sonographers can be found in a number of body part specific capacities including abdominal, breast, musculoskeletal, neural, and obstetric and gynecologic.  Many colleges and universities throughout the country offer specific associate (and bachelor) degrees in sonography, and many employers prefer to hire sonographers who have professional certification.  40 percent growth is projected in the next seven years.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Diagnostic-medical-sonographers.htm#tab-1

Respiratory Therapist

  • Annual Salary: $54,280
  • Hourly wage: $26.10
  • Suggested Education: Associate’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 112,700

A respiratory therapist is a specialized position that helps patients with respiratory illnesses or breathing problems. These workers assess, treat, and care for patients by operating ventilators and monitoring treatment conditions. Respiratory therapists consult with patients to create treatment plans, and teach patients how to use these treatments. Part of their responsibilities involves testing the lung capacity of patients by measuring the volume of oxygen as they breathe. For patients with severe breathing problems and cannot breathe on their own, respiratory therapists connect patients to ventilators and monitor the equipment to ensure that the correct oxygen ratio. Some respiratory therapists work in homes with families to teach them how to use equipment properly.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/respiratory-therapists.htm

Radiologic Technologists and Technicians

  • Annual Salary: $54,340
  • Hourly wage: $26.13
  • Suggested Education: Associate’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 219,900

Radiologic technologists and technicians are involved with diagnostic imaging examinations like x-ray imaging.  As is such, radiologic technologists maintain imaging equipment, and take images of ordered parts of the patient body after positioning the patient accordingly. Radiologic technologists are also expected to operate the computerized imaging equipment and work with radiologists in determining what kind of images need to be taken. Often these technologists and technicians work with magnetic resonance equipment (MRI), x-ray, or computed tomography (CT) equipment to take images of patients. Typically to become a radiologic technologist a specialized associate’s degree is required. Most programs from community colleges, universities, and vocational schools offer both classroom training and clinical training. Depending on the state, certification and licensing may be required.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Radiologic-technologists.htm#tab-1

Occupational Therapy Assistant

  • Annual Salary: $47,490
  • Hourly wage: $22.83
  • Suggested Education: Associate’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 219,900

An occupational therapy assistant helps occupational therapists in patient care. Patients recovering from various illnesses or injuries that have limited their motor control needed for daily living and work typically go to an occupational therapist for help. Occupational therapy assistants help patients in their therapeutic activities like stretching and other strength conditioning, teaching them how to use fitness equipment and other specialized equipment that promote coordination. Ultimately the focus of occupational therapy is to regain lost motor control or learning disabilities, and so occupational therapy assistants help plan their recovery programs. An associate degree and license is required to be an occupational therapy assistant.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/occupational-therapy-assistants-and-aides.htm

Highest Paying Jobs in Healthcare for Bachelor Degrees

highest paying healthcare jobs with high school diploma
Generally speaking, those with higher degrees are given more responsibility and a bigger leadership requirement. This increased responsibility is also reflected in increased pay from positions that don’t require a degree and from jobs that require associate degrees.  The following are some of the best paying jobs in the healthcare industry with a bachelor’s degree.

Medical and Health Services Managers

  • Annual Salary: $84,270
  • Hourly wage: $40.52
  • Suggested Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 303,000

Underneath all the layers of healthcare facilities, physicians, practices, and medicine, the healthcare industry is still a business-based industry. To that end, medical and health services managers have an important role to play in managing how the business and administrative aspects of hospitals, nursing homes, and group medical practices are met.  The ultimate aim of medical and health service managers is to create a profitable and efficient operation.  They keep up to date on the latest laws and regulations and ensure compliance. They also manage the finances of the facility and deal with the bottom line of patient fees and billing. There are varying degrees of responsibility assigned to these kinds of managers—typically those with higher degrees can be found running larger facilities. A bachelor’s degree is generally the minimum requirement in this occupation.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Management/Medical-and-health-services-managers.htm

Registered Nurse

  • Annual Salary: $64,690
  • Hourly wage: $31.10
  • Suggested Education: Associate’s Degree or Bachelor’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 2,737,400

Registered nurses are one of the most important parts of the healthcare industry. Registered nurses give important patient care in the way of medication and treatments, plans for patient care, observations of patient condition and consultations with doctors and other healthcare professionals. Registered nurses are responsible for a host of different things. Some are used in supervisory position and oversee licensed practical nurses, nursing aides, and home care aides. While other registered nurses are used in roles that are not directly related to patient care—administration, education, consulting, sales, medical writing, and more—the possibilities for specialization are endless. This is why nursing is one of the highest employed and most needed positions in the country. Different avenues of education as well as licensing allow for different responsibilities as well as pay differences.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Registered-nurses.htm#tab-4

Health Educators

  • Annual Salary: $45,830
  • Hourly wage: $22.03
  • Suggested Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 63,400

Health educators teach people about wellness and develop programs and materials to encourage healthy living. In doing this, educators assess the needs of their target audience and develop programs that relate to those needs.  Health educators can be found in health care facilities where they develop programs on an individual basis for families and patients. In colleges and public health departments they may be responsible for health campaigns and creating policies that increase wellness. Health educators are also increasingly found in private businesses as more employers are concerned about the physical well-being of their employees. In this capacity, they work with employers to develop incentives for employees to make lifestyle changes that will have positive health effects. Typically the bachelor’s degree required for this position is a specialized one in health education.  Positions in public health agencies or federal government may require a master’s degree in health education.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Community-and-Social-Service/Health-educators.htm#tab-1

Clinical Laboratory Technician

  • Annual Salary: $46,680
  • Hourly wage: $22.44
  • Suggested Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 219,900

Laboratory technicians are responsible for doing a lot of the lab work that allow physicians to conduct research and diagnose and analyze patient conditions. Technologists may analyze various tissue samples, body fluids, and blood samples by using a combination of laboratory equipment. They then record this data and discuss findings with physicians. Typically these technologists work in laboratories that are specific to different fields. These fields can include immunohematology, clinical chemistry, cytotechnology, immunology, microbiology, molecular biology, phlebotomy, and more.  A bachelor’s degree is typically required for these positions and must include coursework in clinical laboratory skills.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Medical-and-clinical-laboratory-technologists-and-technicians.htm#tab-1

Dietitians and Nutritionists

  • Annual Salary: $53,250
  • Hourly wage: $25.60
  • Suggested Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 64,400

Dietitians and nutritionists are experts when it comes to food and what people should eat to lead a healthy lifestyle. They are well-versed in nutrition issues and are capable of analyzing a patient/client’s needs and diet and develop cost-effective meal plans specific to client needs.  They are also responsible for encouraging healthy lifestyle and eating habits to various groups and families. Several specializations exist for dietitians and nutritionists including clinical dietitians, management dietitians, and community dietitians. These specializations work in health care facilities, meal planning for cafeterias and hospitals, and in education of the general public through government agencies and health maintenance organizations (HMO).  Dietitians and nutritionists typically have a bachelor’s degree in dietetics, foods and nutrition, food service systems management as well as specialized training and licensing.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Dietitians-and-nutritionists.htm#tab-1

Highest Paying Jobs in Healthcare for Master’s Degrees

The healthcare industry has great need of people to fill leadership roles. A master’s degree is one of the standard signs of being dedicated, diligent, and willing to step up to a higher role. A master’s degree also allows you to specialize in a specific aspect of healthcare and apply that knowledge. Here are the top five jobs for those with master’s degrees.

Health Administrator

  • Annual Salary: $84,270
  • Hourly wage: $40.52
  • Suggested Education: Bachelor’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 303,000

Like the health service manager position for those with bachelor’s degrees, the health administrator role is similarly a leadership role in the administration of a medical practice. Health administrators are responsible for ensuring that a facility operates smoothly by taking care of the scheduling, inventory upkeep, billing, and other administrative aspects of a practice.  The emphasis with these positions is the business side of the practice. Generally speaking, with a master’s in health administration or a similar degree, health administrators are given more responsibility and are often suited for larger practices and health care facilities. They need to keep up to date with the best ways care is provided, what technology is used, regulations that need to be followed, and the morale and fatigue of the staff.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Management/Medical-and-health-services-managers.htm

Mental Health Therapist

  • Annual Salary: $69,005
  • Hourly wage: $33.40
  • Suggested Education: Master’s Degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 156,300

Mental health therapists help patients recover from mental and emotional issues as well as substance abuse. They typically spend time asking questions and talking with their clients in order to better understand, diagnose, and treat their conditions. Mental health therapists help clients develop strategies to cope and deal with difficult situations and issues in their lives, and help them deal with major changes and stressors.  Mental health therapists are found in a wide variety of callings including as counselors for families, couples and groups, as well as marriage and family therapists. Both can be found in private and public practices.  To become a mental health therapist, prospective candidates must have a master’s degree in counseling or marriage and family therapy as well as bachelor’s degree in a related field. Most states will require licensing to practice.

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes211014.htm

Speech-Language Pathologists

  • Annual Salary: $69,870
  •  Hourly wage: $33.59
  • Suggested Education: Master’s Degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 134,100

Speech-language pathologists or speech therapists assist patients with communication difficulties. They evaluate the difficulty in which their patients struggle to communicate, and identify treatment options. Speech disorders can come from a number of different causes including stroke, brain injury, developmental delay, a cleft palate, or emotional trauma. When treating patients, a speech-language pathologist teaches patients how to make certain sounds and improve their communication methods. They help patients develop the necessary muscles used to swallow and speak and counsel families on how to deal with communication disorders. Speech-language pathologist can be found working in schools as well as medical facilities to assist different types of patients. A master’s degree is required for this career. All practitioners must be licensed.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Speech-language-pathologists.htm#tab-1

Occupational Therapist

  • Annual Salary: $69,870
  •  Hourly wage: $33.59
  • Suggested Education: Master’s Degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 113,200

Occupational therapists treat patients who are ill, injured or disabled through the use of everyday activities. During the course of treatment, an occupational therapist may observe a patient’s performance in doing tasks, and develop a treatment plan with different tasks to help them overcome their weaknesses. Within the umbrella of occupational therapy are many specializations. Some occupational therapists may choose to work with the elderly in helping them live independent lives. Others may work with children with developmental delays, while others may help children in schools to fully participate. Occupational therapy requires a master degree in occupational therapy as well as a bachelor’s in a related field. Some therapists may have a doctoral degree, depending on their specialization. On top of the degree, occupational therapists are required to be licensed.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/occupational-therapists.htm#tab-1

Physician Assistant

  • Annual Salary: $90,930
  • Hourly wage: $43.72
  • Suggested Education: Master’s degree
  • Number of jobs in 2010: 86,700

Physician assistants or PAs practice medicine under the supervision of physicians, and are formally educated to examine patients, diagnose, and provide treatment options. In many ways they function in a role that exists between nurses and doctors in terms of responsibility and the amount of care they can give to patients. Physician assistants can be found working in all areas of medicine and can be very specialized depending on the physicians they are working with. In some rural areas, they may be the primary healthcare provider in the absence of a doctor or other physician. Being a physician assistant is a demanding job that requires a master’s degree. The best candidates for this position generally have experience as registered nurses or EMTs or paramedics before they apply to these programs.

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Physician-assistants.htm

Highest Paying Jobs in Healthcare for PhD Degrees

At the top of the healthcare world are professional degrees and their corresponding jobs. These are jobs that require a bachelor’s degree in addition to training and further education in a specialized area of study. Indeed, for many the doctorate of philosophy or Ph.D. is the highest degree that can be attained. It is a mark of specialization and certification of a very specific knowledge and unique skillset that is the product of hard work. The Ph.D. opens the door to many advanced leadership, education, and research roles in the healthcare community. Many prominent Ph.D. holders work for various government health organizations like the National Institute of Health (NIH), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP) and more.  In short, this high degree opens many doors in many different industries that are connected to healthcare like justice, finance, and media.  Here are some of the well-paying options for Ph.D. degree holders.

Professor of Public Health

Average Salary: $50,000 – $100,000
Hourly Wage: $23.95 – $47.89
Suggested Education: Ph.D.
Number of Jobs: 99,400

Perhaps one of the most well-known jobs for Ph.D. holders is the lofty position of professor. This is a largely academic role that straddles education and research. Professors of public health are an integral part of the health care industry because they are responsible for teaching and training future health care workers.  They are responsible for lecturing classes, preparing course documents, and grading student assignments. Because of growth in the healthcare industry, the job outlook for professors in public health may be better than other education positions because they will be counted on to provide necessary training to a new generation of nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals. The salary of professors varies greatly from private institutions to public institutions and depends on whether they are associate, assistant, full, or adjunct professors.

Behavior Scientist

Average Salary: $70,000 – $120,000
Hourly Wage: $33.52 – $57.47
Suggested Education: Master’s Degree or Ph.D.
Number of Jobs: 8,000

Behavior scientists include psychologists, cognitive scientists, social neuroscientists, and other professionals in their ranks. Behavior scientists are involved in the study of behavior—how people interact with one another—and how interactions can be governed and affected. Behavior scientists also offer counseling and aid to those with behavioral issues. Behavioral scientists are commonly self-employed, but many find employment in corporate and education environments.

Nursing

Average Salary: $70,000 – $129,000
Hourly Wage: $33.52 – $61.78
Suggested Education: Bachelor Degree in nursing, Ph.D., DNP
Number of Jobs: <25,000

Yes, nursing is an important position that appeared lower on the list, but there is a strong market for nurses with Ph.D. or DNP degrees for a number of reasons. First, there is almost always a nursing shortage and many nursing programs are very competitive and difficult to get into. More nursing Ph.D. holders would allow more nurses to be trained across the country, thereby alleviating the strain in the current system. Nursing is also an avenue for top of the line research as their experiences add a lot of merit to healthcare research and how suffering of patients is eased.  Beyond this, Ph.D. nurses are in high demand for governmental positions, research directors, and faculty appointments at universities and colleges. A doctorate in nursing is a gateway to many exciting leadership opportunities.

Vaccine Researcher

Average Salary: $150,000
Hourly Wage: $71.84
Suggested Education: Ph.D. and/or Doctor of Medicine

Vaccine research is one of the biggest fields of research in healthcare that combines the efforts of scientists, medical doctors, microbiologists, and lab technicians. This field of study dedicated to creating new vaccines and improving existing vaccines to prevent the spread of harmful diseases.  While vaccine research is typically conducted in secure lab environments, these labs can be found in university, hospital, and pharmaceutical corporation campuses.  Depending on the type of research and responsibility, salaries may vary. Some employers may require researchers to have both Ph.D. and M.D. degrees for advanced leadership roles.

Medical Director

Average Salary: $225,500
Hourly wage: $107.76
Suggested Education: Ph.D., Master of Business Administration

Medical directors are prominent positions within companies and hospitals that are responsible for everything that goes on within the scope of the project. In fact, these directors are often considered the “face” of a project. Whether the project is in neurological research or pharmaceutical product creation, the director is responsible for design, execution and interpretation of clinical studies and research. Medical directors also interact with leadership from various research and corporate stakeholders and provide clear communication with regulatory authorities.  As a high profile job, medical directors are extremely qualified, being able to combine the skills of a doctorate level healthcare professional with the business acumen of a results proven CEO.

Highest Paying Jobs in Healthcare for Medical Degree Specializations

Professional degrees in the health care industry are typically the “Doctor” degree. These degrees can take on a number of different specializations including Doctor of Medicine (MD), Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS), Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD), Doctor of Osteopathy (OD) and more. These degrees are awarded at the end of many years of work; however, being at the top of the healthcare industry does have its perks as these professions are some of the best paid jobs. There is always a need for these specialized medical degrees, and so job prospects are nearly always very good. This is because the time requirement and the amount of schooling required make it difficult to achieve these distinguished positions. That being said, these specialized doctors are well compensated—even more so than standard general practitioners. The following are five of the highest paying specialties in the industry.

Orthopedic Surgeon

Average Annual Salary: $464,500
Average Hourly Wage:  $222.46
Suggested Education: Bachelor Degree, Doctor of Medicine, and additional residency training
Number of jobs in 2010: 27,773

Orthopedic surgeons are a specialized type of surgeon that examines, diagnoses, and surgically treats diseases and injuries of musculoskeletal nature. In other words, these surgeons deal with injuries to bones and correct fractures and breaks using braces, pins, casts, splints and more. Generally speaking, to become an orthopedic surgeon, one must have a medical degree and be licensed to practice. Additionally, they typically need two to four years of surgery experience and then must be certified by taking a state-administered exam.

Cardiologist

Average Salary: $461,364 (invasive) $447,143 (Noninvasive)
Hourly Wage: $214.15 – $220.96
Suggested education: Bachelor Degree, Doctor of Medicine, and additional residency training
Number of Jobs: 27,706

A cardiologist is a specialist in the field of the cardiovascular system and is trained to diagnose and treat diseases of the heart and cardiovascular system. Cardiologist can further specialize in areas such as interventional cardiology, electrophysiology, and echocardiography. Each of these specializations deals with different techniques used to treat heart disease and heart related illnesses. Noninvasive cardiologists diagnose cardiac problems without treating them and more commonly engaged in research and consulting. The job market for this profession is strong. To become a cardiologist, one must earn an undergraduate degree, complete four years of medical school, three years of residency, and two or three years in a cardiology fellowship. During this time, cardiologist candidates are expected to spend time working in a catheterization laboratory, and learn how to use the latest in cardiology technology.

Gastroenterologist

Average Salary: $441,421
Hourly Wage: $211.41
Suggested education: Bachelor Degree, Doctor of Medicine, and additional residency training
Number of Jobs: 14,902

Gastroenterologists are physicians that deal in gastrointestinal issues. To rectify these problems, gastroenterologists are skilled in diagnosis and will perform various tests including colonoscopies, blood work, and endoscopies to find the answer to the problem.  Gastroenterologists often run their own practices or are involved in practices with other doctors. Not only do they see patients regularly, but they are also responsible for conducting surgeries when necessary. Like all MD doctors, they must complete a four year undergrad followed by medical school. Following that an advanced fellowship in gastroenterology is required.

Urologist

Average salary: $424,091
Hourly Wage: $203.11
Suggested education: Bachelor Degree, Doctor of Medicine, and additional residency training
Number of Jobs: 10,665

Urologists are medical doctors that specialize in treating conditions of the urinary tract as well as male reproductive organs. Thus, they are experts in the functions of the kidneys, uterus, urethra, urinary bladder and other organs related to the urinary tract. Urologists can further specialize into dealing with pediatric urology, male/female infertility, and oncology. Urologists consult with patients regarding any illnesses and disorders and may also be called upon to perform surgery. On top of the bachelor degree and medical degree standard for most doctors, approximately five years of postgraduate education is required, with a one to two years in a surgery program as well as three to four years in a urology residency program.

Hematologists

Average salary: $396,000
Hourly Wage: $189.66
Suggested education: Bachelor Degree, Doctor of Medicine, and additional residency training
Number of Jobs: 8,328

Hematologists are sometimes considered a specialization of urology, though hematologists focus mainly on diseases and disorders of the blood, vascular, bone marrow and immune system. They treat disorders like hemophilia, lymphoma, blood clots and other bleeding disorders. To become a hematologist, candidates must pursue the requisite undergrad and medical school requirements, as well as at least three years residency in internal medicine in addition to two to four years of fellowship in hematology/oncology.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2013/07/18/the-best-paying-jobs-for-doctors/