I love healthcare public relations. Representing companies in healthcare and life sciences appeals to my personal desire to give back, or make something of a positive impact on the world.
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According to the Council of Public Relations Firms, healthcare is one of PR’s biggest growth areas.
And yet, I don’t hear a lot of college or grad school students with Communications degrees say they specifically want a career in healthcare PR. This is surprising, given that studies show employees of all ages and levels – particularly millennials – want to take part in something bigger than themselves and their company. Maybe healthcare PR is perceived as too niche? No--the consumerization of healthcare has changed that.
Like nothing else, healthcare PR provides the satisfaction of knowing you’re helping patients manage through life’s health challenges with tools and resources to be better informed and empowered, helping new drugs get to market faster, or discovering ways to facilitate meaningful conversations between patients and healthcare professionals that wouldn’t have happened otherwise. And healthcare PR provides opportunity for communicators that are attracted to consumer PR as well as technology PR.
Healthcare PR is an amazing industry for college students to consider when applying for jobs and internships, and provides impactful, challenging and meaningful work that they can feel good about. At the end of the day, if you do your job well, patients may receive better quality care because of your efforts. We’re talking about the people you know – your mother, your father or your friends. How great is that?
Want more on integrated marketing for healthcare brands? Read, 'Implementing an Integrated Marketing and PR Strategy for Healthcare Brands'.
Agencies like PAN with deep healthcare experience are always looking for high-skilled candidates with an interest in healthcare or healthcare IT, who are passionate about trends such as patient empowerment, cloud adoption, and the growth of accountable care organizations (ACOs). It’s an extensive field with applications in hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, non-profit organizations and more. Healthcare is constantly changing, given the regulatory challenges in drug development, combined with the powerful changes that healthcare reform has and will continue to have for patients, healthcare providers and payors.
I’ve come to find throughout my career that healthcare PR is somewhat undefinable, which is what makes it exciting. Interested in social media? There’s a place for that too. Social media is often associated with tech or consumer-based PR practices; however, it has developed a key role in the healthcare industry. Facebook, Twitter, and blogs can be used to generate purposeful conversations with patients and caregivers.
If you share a passion for transforming healthcare and improving the health of communities, a career in healthcare PR may be perfect for you.