Careers in Alternative Health Care

Nurse Anesthesiologist

Every year, more people are seeking out guidance from alternative health care professionals. Complementary and alternative medicine, or CAM, can help patients deal with their pain in addition to mainstream methods and medication. If you are looking into medical career training, here are some careers in alternative health care in which you may be interested.


According to the National Health Interview Survey, over three million people in the U.S. use acupuncture every year. Acupuncture originated in China as a method in treating pain and disease by inserting fine needles into pressure points on the skin. People in this medical career can earn from $24,000 to $100,000 annually and may work in offices, clinics or hospitals. Medical career training for acupuncture can take anywhere from three months to four years to complete, dependant on the program. Those interested in this medical career should already hold an associate's or bachelor's degree.

Massage Therapy
Massage therapists can specialize in different types of massage such as sports therapy or Swedish massage. After completing medical career training for massage therapy, which may require state licensing, massage therapists can earn anywhere from $8 to $33 hourly, which can include tips. Some training programs may require about 500 hours of classroom instruction. Massage therapists can work in hospitals, spas, clinics, gyms, hotels, or become self-employed by offering their services to corporate offices part time.

Counseling and Education
While there are few known educational and training requirements or salary averages for this career, it is one that is beginning to grow in popularity. Counselors and educators in alternative medicine give guidance to patients regarding healthy living and preventative care. Many of these individuals are self-employed and can work from home, making this a great career for stay-at-home parents. You can find out more about this rewarding career while looking into medical career training.