Careers in Public Health: Career Scopes, Top Colleges and Salaries

As the saying goes – Health is Wealth. The field of public health is constantly evolving in response to the needs of communities and populations around the world. Public health initiatives, such as vaccination programs, health & safety laws (including traffic & motor vehicles laws), restrictions on the use of tobacco, family planning, and clean air and water standards are very important for any economy. In this post, we will talk about public health careers.


Public health is “the science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting human health through organized efforts and informed choices of society, organizations, public and private, communities and individuals“.


Public health aims to improve the quality of life through the prevention and treatment of disease, including mental health. Careers in public health go well beyond working in neighborhood clinics and promoting healthy living initiatives. A degree in the field can lead to jobs in law enforcement, education, public policy and so much more.


Public Health Careers

Job Scopes, Education, Top Colleges in India and Abroad, and Salaries

Co-authored by Parinita Gupta


What is Public Health?


Public health is a stream in science which deals with taking appropriate measures in improving the health conditions of the society and communities by educating them about various diseases and helping them understand the preventive measures. Public health promotes the measures that need to be taken amongst communities to live, learn, work and play. Public health team promotes wellness by encouraging healthy behaviours to perform research and assure that they educate the people about the healthy way of living.


Public health professionals educate people regarding vaccinations for children and adults to prevent diseases. They even work on creating awareness about the various risks of tobacco and alcohol. They conduct nutrition programs in schools and guide parents about the various benefits of healthy food and a healthy life.


Careers in Public Health: Career Scopes, Top Colleges and Salaries


Public health team works on tracking disease outbreaks and enforces laws which promote smoke-free indoor air, wearing helmets and seat belts and spreading the word about different ways of staying healthy through scientific solutions to the problems in a community. In general, public health helps in saving time, money and improves the quality of life. It also aims at reducing human suffering; helping people thrive in a healthy environment.


Required Educational Qualifications


There are many professional fields in public health. These are First Responder, Restaurant Inspectors, Health Educators, Scientists and Researchers, Nutritionists, CommunityPplanners, Social Workers, Epidemiologists, Public Health Physicians, Public Health Nurses, Occupational Health and Safety Professionals, Public Policymakers and Sanitarians. All these professionals come under public health working team. They aim at protecting and improving individual health standards and the society at large.


To become professionals in public health stream, one should have a minimum qualification of a Bachelor’s degree in either or more of the following disciplines:

  • Biology
  • Anthropology
  • Public Policy
  • Mathematics
  • Engineering
  • Education
  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Medicine
  • Business

A Masters degree in public health would help in securing higher level jobs in organizations. You could also pursue a Bachelors degree in Public Health.

Where do graduates in Public Health work?


There is an array of job opportunities for public health professionals. They will get a good headstart to work directly with elite organizations of the world. Any graduate who pursues a degree in Public health can directly join:


  • Government Agencies like
  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)¬ – CDC is a primary federal organization for public health. They protect against outbreaks and respond to them instantly. They work on health data analysis and make policies which are essential for public health.
  2. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) – The NIH does biomedical and health-related research under the Department of Health and Human Services. It is a government organization where the federal government funds the NIH for various researches for various diseases.


There are many more government and private organizations like the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) etc.


  • Non-profit organizations – Non-profit organizations have unification of global goals and initiatives within the public health industry. They focus more on a specific disease, population, or health issues in the community or the world. Few examples of non-profit organizations are the American Red Cross, Planned Parenthood, The Allies for Health + Wellbeing, WHO.
  • Health care organizations – Public health professionals can also join hospital, healthcare systems, long-term care facilities where they work on educating the people about diseases and perform researches.
  • Educational Institutions – Post-graduate public health professionals could become professors in colleges and universities. This role often requires a blend of research and education.


Why do we Need Public Health Professionals?


Public health is a field which requires a lot of co-coordinators to work together to bring awareness in the society. However, there is a huge shortage of experienced professionals. 250,ooo is the expected number of professionals to cater to the demand of world population to identify, treat, prevent and develop awareness about emerging public health problems amongst the communities.


Public health…

  • has a real and lasting positive effect on people.
  • helps promote a healthy environment.
  • is a moral and ethical imperative.


Public health programs help people survive. These programs have led to…

  • increased life expectancies.
  • worldwide reductions in infant and child mortality.
  • eradication or reduction of many contagious diseases.


There is a huge demand in the market for these professionals because they serve directly to the public. Irrespective of the communities, they work towards the welfare of the public and on the preventive measures that need to be taken to prevent health issues which are spread across the globe.


They also work on programs like the implementation of policies, educating people regarding these policies, promoting healthcare equity, quality and accessibility amongst everyone. In order to meet the demand of the growing population, there is a huge requirement for public health professionals who could be a part in creating an impact on various conditions of health and its problems.


Top Colleges for Public Health in India


  • Indian Institute of Public Health, Gandhinagar
  • Central University of Kerala, Kasargod
  • Jawaharlal Institute of Post Graduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry
  • GD Goenka University, Gurgaon
  • JSS Medical College and Hospital, Mysore
  • Manipal University, Manipal
  • University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad
  • Tata Institute of Social Sciences, (TISS) Mumbai
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi
  • Savitribai Phule Pune University: School of Public Health and Health Sciences, Pune
  • IIMT College of Paramedical Education, Agra Manipal School of Allied Health Sciences (SOAHS) – Department of Exercise and Sports Sciences, Manipal
  • Parul Institute of Public Health, Vadodara
  • Vananchal Institute of Health Education and Research, Garhwa
  • School of Public Health – All India Institute of Medical Sciences (SPH-AIIMS), Jodhpur
  • Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS Pilani), Pilani.
  • Asian Institute of Public Health (AIPH), Bhubaneshwar


Top Colleges for Masters Public Health (MPH) Abroad


Master’s in Public Health, Masters in Health Science, Masters in Behavioural Sciences, Masters in Advanced Healthcare, Community Health, Masters in Medicine and Global Health, Masters in Public Health and Health Promotion, Healthcare Management, International Healthcare, Masters in Healthcare and Media Communications are the few other related post-graduate courses available abroad.


Top Universities for Public Health in USA


  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Harvard University
  • University of California – Berkeley
  • Cornell University
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Michigan
  • Columbia University
  • University of Minnesota – Twin Cities
  • University of North CarolinaChapelpel Hill
  • Boston University
  • University of Maryland
  • University of San Francisco


Top Universities for Public Health in UK


  • Imperial College London
  • London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Glasgow
  • King’s College London
  • University of Liverpool
  • University of Nottingham
  • University of Warwick


Top Universities for Public Health in Canada


  • University of Toronto
  • McMaster University
  • Queen’s University
  • University of Alberta
  • University of Western Ontario
  • University of British Columbia
  • University of Waterloo


Top Universities for Public Health in Australia


  • University of Sydney
  • Deakin University
  • James Cook University
  • University of Melbourne
  • QUT
  • Macquarie University
  • Monash University


Other Top Universities for Masters in Public Health Abroad


  • University of Tampere
  • University of Eastern Finland
  • Lund University
  • Zuyd University of Applied sciences
  • University of Groningen
  • University of Amsterdam
  • Uppsala University
  • Umea University
  • Karolinska Institute
  • University of Helsinki
  • UiT
  • NTNU
  • University of Oslo
  • NUS


Online Courses on Public Health


Epidemiology: The Basic Science of Public Health – University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

Biostatistics in Public Health Specialization – Johns Hopkins University

Statistical Analysis with R for Public Health Specialization – Imperial College London

Epidemiology for Public Health Specialization – Imperial College London

Epidemiology in Public Health Practice – Johns Hopkins University


Public Health Salaries


Since there is a lot of demand there is an immense growth which is expected to see in the next 10 years. According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, Public Health industry is expected to grow by 21 % and is also expected to open more jobs by 2022 in all sectors of public health.


Here is the data gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics about the expected growth in payscale for healthcare professionals. For a bachelors graduate average expected salary is between $30,000 – $50,000, while for a masters graduate average salary is between $80,000 to $100,000 per annum.


Public Health Careers, Jobs, Top Colleges and Salaries


Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

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