As the population ages and baby boomers find themselvs in need of healthcare services, occupations with fewer years of study and moderate salaries—like physical therapist assistant, are in high demand.

Jennifer Gamboa, PT, DPT, OCS, and Janet Crosier, PT, DPT, MEd, director of APTA’s Physical Therapist Assistant Services, offer “real advice” for people interested in becoming physical therapists and physical therapist assistants in US News & World Report’s article on the 50 best health care careers of 2011.The career summaries also include information on job outlook, education, salary, upward mobility, activity level, job stress.

Healthcare continues to offer excellent opportunities for job seekers , and not only positions that require a medical degree.Occupations that call for fewer years of study and offer more moderate salaries—like physical therapist assistant and lab technician—are also in demand. Many of the occupations on this list rank at the top of the Labor Department’s growth projections for 2008 to 2018, largely because millions of aging baby boomers will continue to place heightened demand on healthcare providers. Click here to find out more! [See the full list of The 50 Best Careers of 2011.] Additions to this year’s list include massage therapist and athletic trainer, both rooted in preventative medicine. Veterinarians are also very much in demand.