Health Care & Science Industry Trends

Clinical Professions

Health Administration & Management
Hospital hiring + staffing challenges

  • Many hospitals are in COVID-19/crisis hiring and staffing mode, primarily hiring for clinical roles. The need for experienced health care professionals is high, which is not surprising during a global medical emergency. Many hospitals are also temporarily pausing their university recruiting. At least some hospitals (e.g., Lurie Children’s) are pausing acceptance and on-boarding of new volunteers.
  • Current sample entry-level hospital openings in Chicago area:
  • Many medical/health care schools are trying to graduate students early (and many states are calling for retired health professionals to return or to travel to the hardest hit areas, like New York). Some states are expanding reciprocity of licensing (for doctors and nurses) across state lines. 
  • Some states (e.g., NY and NJ) are temporarily easing restrictions on foreign medical graduates
    • NY: Allowed to practice if have 1+ year of US graduate medical education
    • NJ: Granting temporary licenses to doctors licensed in foreign countries
    • Potentially large impact if restrictions are eased permanently/across more states

Graduate programs + testing + licensing challenges

  • Impacts to standardized testing
    • E.g., MCAT exams cancelled through May 21
  • Graduate application cycles still opening for professional health programs—impact to full admissions processes (e.g., interviewing) is still unclear
  • Flexibility and changes to clinical hour requirements—including flexibility in hour requirements, what experiences count toward clinical hours, etc. (often on state-by-state basis by state licensing boards)
  • Licensing exams—changing in exam schedules, procedures, etc. (e.g., for NCLEX)

Research & Development, Biotech and Medical Technology
Opportunity + great need for scientific and medical innovation

  • This is a big moment for R&D for COVID-19 testing, vaccines, health communication and prevention, and it will continue to be for some time (next 1-3 years?).
  • Healthcare tech companies are on the forefront. 
  • MATTER + 1871 + mHUB—leading research/tech collaboration with Chicago startups 


Health Promotion and Wellness

Research & Development, Biotech and Medical Technology
Delivery of health and wellness services

  • Telehealth, telemedicine (primary care),and teletherapy are all becoming much more common. This could help in expanding access to health care in rural areas, expanding preventive medicine, and better informing patients even after COVID-19.  
    • Veeva Health is pushing to provide more digital access to healthcare: stocks, Twitter followers, and job postings all up significantly in 2020. 
    • Teladoc is also increasing digital access to healthcare.
  • Digital delivery of wellness and fitness services is exponentially expanding due to closure of gyms and other fitness locations. This could remain high after COVID-19 to expand fitness programs access to areas without fitness centers (especially “boutique” classes).For example:


Public Health & Health Policy

Environmental Science, Energy and Natural Resources
Additional HCS hiring trends

  • Pharmacies are hiring rapidly:
  • University scientific research: 
    • The future is uncertain with hiring freezes, research budgets in limbo, federal funding uncertain, and virtual research challenges.  
    • Universities are still innovating, especially in response to COVID-19.
  • Government scientific research—impacts on budgeting? Priorities? 
  • Trends to watch: environmental & resource trends (air quality, water quality, emissions, transportation, natural resources, consumer patterns, etc.). Stay tuned!

Industries Growing Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

By: Christina Danno, BEC Career Community Ambassador

The COVID-19 outbreak has left many businesses with no choice but to temporarily close or adjust to working remotely. However, a few industries have been impacted differently and have seen expansion because of it.


animal crossing
Image: Nintendo EPD

Considering the amount of time people are now spending at home, gaming has become much more popular. For example, “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” which was released March 20, had one of its biggest launches to date. According to Digital Trends, it “is the game we need right now – and the one people are buying.” It is fun, yet relaxing, and allows gamers to play in real-time and participate in activities like fishing or planting flowers, which can help take away from the stress of not being able to leave your house all day.    

Video Conferencing

Smart working and video conference

Another industry that has been doing well is remote conferencing services. For example, Zoom has become one of the top choices for connecting with coworkers while working from home. According to The Washington Post, it has become the third most downloaded app in the App Store this month. Its stocks reached an all-time high, doubling its price from last year. Not only are people using Zoom for work conferences, but also for online schooling, workout classes and even virtual movie nights with friends! 

Social Media


Further, social media seems to be the answer for those looking to stay connected with friends and keep up to date with all the latest news. Digital media outlets have seen consumption and user activity grow since the pandemic.

According to A.List, the company analyzed data from over 2000 Tik Tok influencers and noticed engagement increased to 27 percent from February to March. In fact, many Tik Tok creators who have been on the app for a while have made funny videos mocking those who used to make fun of the app, but now are trying to go viral because of all the free time they have. also studied Instagram and noticed ad posts had a 75 percent increase of likes over the past few weeks.

Sanitary Products


In addition to all these industries, the one that has shown the most obvious growth is safeguard health products. According to USA Today, sales of hand sanitizers, masks and gloves increased over 800% in just one month because of the outbreak.

With the fear of getting sick and catching germs, citizens are doing everything they can to protect themselves at all costs. Not only that, but toilet paper and Lysol products have also been sold out at many stores for weeks. Although many stores are restocking, they are putting a limit for certain products to keep from selling out so quickly once again.

For these industries, there is some positivity in the air. However, thousands of employees have been laid off because the companies they worked for had to shut down due to the pandemic.

According to Crain’s Chicago Business, Walgreens and CVS are planning to hire 60,000 employees. This includes delivery drivers, distribution center employees and customer service professionals. They will organize virtual job fairs and interviews, with an extra focus on hospitality workers since their industry has been having a tough time from the outbreak.

CVS is providing employees with bonuses from $150 to $500, and Walgreens, a one-time payment of $300 for full-time employees and $150 for part-time. Along with that, both companies are offering 25 days of child, elderly or adult-dependent care for employees, as well as paid sick leave.

For many, this may feel like a stressful time. But it is good to be reminded that there are companies working to help those that may need it, whether it be through entertainment, health & safety or expanded job opportunities.