Working in the medical gives people a chance to make life changing connections with their patients and family members. Employees in the medical field are also highly desired and well compensated. Both of these factors contribute to the reasons why so many people desire to enter the medical field, including felons. In this article, we will examine if felons are able to work in the medical field, what jobs they can have, and how they can get a job.
Why the Medical Field is so Popular.
The medical field is one of the most popular fields for job seekers. The medical field is abundant with high-paying jobs for those that have the proper skills and certifications. The medical field also allows employees to change lives and do truly meaningful work. Helping others is a large part of the work that takes place in the medical field, and that work pays well. The average salary for a Doctor of Medicine (M.D) in 2018 was $223,000.00. Nurses (RN/LPN) raked in an impressive $64,000.00 a year on average.
These professions require a tremendous amount of schooling and study, hence why the pay is above the national average of $52,145.80, but what about jobs in the medical field that do not require much schooling (under two years)? EMTs and Paramedics earned an average of $38,700.00 a year, and Surgical Technologists pulled in an impressive $39,700.00 a year.
The medical field pays very well. In the next section we will look at some of the best jobs for felons to have in the medical field, as well as determine which careers are unavailable to felons.
How Felons Can Enter the Medical Field.
Felons face an uphill battle when they decide they wish to enter the medical field. The competition for some of the most desirable jobs is very stiff and having a felony conviction on your record will not help. Before a felon applies to work in the medical field, he or she should examine their resume, cover letter, and previous experiences. It is important for felons to know that they will be competing against applicants that, in most cases, have four-year degrees and possibly some experience under their belt. In order for a felon to increase their odds of getting the job, they should craft a good application.
Employers are a big fan of seeing previous experience on an application. This experience can include job shadows, internships, or part time work. If possible, felons should try to obtain some experience. Another aspect an employer will look for on an application is volunteer work and community service. Employers like to see this because it is a way for someone to prove their good character. Felons should try and volunteer at least once a week. Where the felon volunteers does not particularity matter, but if any volunteer opportunities are open in the medical field, that would be best. Having strong references can also help boost the application for a felon. Previous employers, parole officers, or anyone that can speak to your hard work and motivation to succeed will make great references.
If the employer likes the felon’s application, then the felon will move to the next stage, the interview process. Felon’s should dress professionally and speak on their strong suits. Consider finding a trusted friend or family member to help you prepare for your interview. Practice makes perfect!
Jobs for Felons in the Medical Field.
Those with a felony on their record may find it to be disappointing to hear that there are some jobs that they cannot hold. A large part of the work that takes place within the medical field requires employees to work with patients when they are at their weakest. Patients depend on the trained medical staff to help them. Legal scholars argue that this is one of the main reasons why felons should not be able to hold careers that require direct patient contact. There are a number of jobs that felons are unable to have based on their prior convictions. Below is a list of some of the most common jobs in the medical field that are not open to felons.
- Doctor (M.D).
- Surgical Technologist.
- Nurse (R.N/LPN).
- EMT or Paramedic.
Felons do not qualify to receive the proper licenses to hold these roles, therefore it is impossible for a felon to work in any of the careers above.
The medical field is a very large field; there are countless jobs at hospitals, retirement homes, urgent care facilities and more. Just because there is a felony on someone’s record does not mean they cannot work in the medical field. One very popular career for felons in the medical field is alternative therapy. Alternative medicines and therapies have seen a rise in demand over the last decade, mostly due to its effectiveness. For example, many felons choose to work as an acupuncture therapist. An acupuncture therapist has an average starting pay of $35,000.00 a year, although some of the top earners can easily gross over $100,000.00 a year. Another great profession for felons is to become a regenerative medicine expert. These experts can expect to earn $85,000.00 a year on average.
There are many great opportunities for felons when it comes to working in the medical field. The rise in alternative medicine has helped felons secure employment working in this field.
How Felons Can Succeed in the Medical Field.
Even though felons are limited in their career choice due to their felony, that does not mean that felons are unable to succeed in the medical field. One of the most popular ways felons can succeed is by applying to have their felony conviction expunged by the courts. If a felon is able to get their felony expunged, then the felon is no longer a felon; they can now apply for any job in the medical field (assuming they have the proper licenses).
The process of expungement can be very long and expensive, expungement means that the courts simply delete your felony from your record. If your record is expunged, the felony no longer exists. If a felon is determined to become a clinical psychologist, then the felon will have to go through the process of trying to get their felony expunged.
It is important to note that not all felons are able to expunge their felonies; felons that have been charged with murder, rape, or other violent crimes are ineligible to have their felony expunged, meaning that they will never get to become a clinical psychologist (or any profession off limits to felons). If the felony committed was of a non-violent nature and it has been at least ten years since the felon’s release, then the felon may move through the process of expunging their felony.
There are companies across the country that specialize in the expungement process, there are also lawyers that focus only on expunging felonies. As a felon, it may be a good idea to hire either an expungement lawyer or an expungement company to help guide you through the process. The process of getting a felony erased from your record takes anywhere from a few months to years depending on the felony and any additional charges.
If you are successful in expunging your felony, you are no longer a felon and have the same freedoms as everyone else when it comes to working in the medical field; that means that ex-felons can now become doctors or nurses since there is no record of any felony conviction on the ex-felons record. Expungement has been a way many ex-felons have entered the medical field and built a successful career as either a doctor or nurse. Any career in the medical field is open to those that have their records expunged, so for felons that are able to go through the expungement process, it may be a good idea from a career standpoint.
Can felons do medical billing and coding?
In most cases, yes. Felons are able to work in roles that do not require direct patient contact. The majority of medical billing and coding is done electronically and does not require much contact. Medical billing and coding employees must have skills in communication, math, and problem solving. Applicants that have a four-year degree have a higher chance of receiving the position, but those with a High School Diploma or GED are able to apply as well.
Can a felon become a veterinarian?
No. Felons are unable to become licensed veterinarians due to the fact that the issuing agency will not permit anyone with a serious criminal record to work as a veterinarian. If a felon has their record expunged, then they will become eligible to be a veterinarian.
Can a felon become a pharmacy technician?
In most cases, no. The only way for a felon to obtain a job as a pharmacy technician is to have their record expunged. Some pharmacies examine felon applicants on a case-by-case basis, but speaking in generalities, it is impossible to work as a pharmacy tech with a felony on your record.
Thank You for reading! Do you want to work in the medical field? Let us know why in the comments below!