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Growth in the Medical Industry
According to statistics from Capgemini, a research consulting firm, the health technology industry accounts for $250 billion in revenue each year as of the late 2000s. Growth over the next decade is predicted to range around 9 to 15 percent by the time elementary and middle school kids enter their college education. This is one of the primary motivational facts for kids on careers in health technology. The growth means that many new jobs will be available for the adults of the future. Much of this growth is targeted to be in the cardiovascular and orthopedic fields, as new devices utilizing high-tech designs are invented. Capgemini also points to the fact that many areas of the world have market penetration as low as 20 percent. With many countries predicted to grow at a substantial rate over the next decades, health technology will be a major factor in industrial advancements.
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One of the fastest growing fields in health care technology is biotechnology. This growth represents some of the most important facts for kids on careers in health technology, as the job market should expand noticeably in the future. The field is based around devices and techniques devoted to the study of agriculture, biology, food science and general medical practice. With the movement to ensure sustainable food sources, making sure these sources provide adequate nutrition to a growing population is essential. Kids today will use genetic engineering technology and advanced computer systems to find the links between the traditional needs of the population and the future world yet to exist.
Above left: Biotechnician. (Supplied by the Agricultural Research Center; Public Domain; http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/ee/99341.jpg)
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Health informatics is another major field which kids interested in careers in health technology can investigate. This field of study deals with the methods the medical community use to accumulate and archive medical information. By using the computer and mathematical skills they already acquire in school, kids can take a career path towards health informatics. One of the many facts for kids on careers in health technology is that this particular area of study may readily align with the changing world in a much easier way than other fields. Already, the United States is making an effort to build a concrete database of medical records for every patient in the country. This means that by the time elementary school-age children reach the workplace, this system will be in place, requiring maintenance and advancements.
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Medical Device Technology
All of the facts for kids on careers in health technology show that the field of medical device technology is a fast growing industry in need of many employees in the future. From simple things like tongue depressors and thermometers to blood sugar meters and CT scanners, all of these devices require design, manufacture, marketing and maintenance. By the time kids today enter the workforce, it is assumed that the technology will have advanced even further, making strong use of skill sets currently being developed by this generation. A great example of how medical device technology changes over time is the thermometer. Years ago, every thermometer used by the health care industry was a mercury-based design. However, by the late 20th century, digital thermometers replaced the older versions. This took years of man hours and major investment by the industry to implement and can help people learn the facts for kids on careers in health technology.
Above right: Blood glucose testing. (Supplied by David-i98 at Wikimedia Commons; GNU Free Documentation License; http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/2/26/Blood_Glucose_Testing.JPG)
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European Medical Device Technology: http://emdt.co.uk/
"Ahead of the Curve" US News and World Report: http://www.usnews.com/money/careers/articles/2008/12/11/ahead-of-the-curve-health-informatics-specialist-2009.html
Biotechnology Industry Organization: http://www.bio.org/