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What Does it Take to Be an Epidemiologist?

Epidemiologist Example Investigate and describe the determinants and distribution of disease, disability, or health outcomes. May develop the means for prevention and control.

A Day in the Life of an Epidemiologist

  • Educate healthcare workers, patients, and the public about infectious and communicable diseases, including disease transmission and prevention.
  • Supervise professional, technical, and clerical personnel.
  • Plan, administer and evaluate health safety standards and programs to improve public health, conferring with health department, industry personnel, physicians, and others.
  • Identify and analyze public health issues related to foodborne parasitic diseases and their impact on public policies, scientific studies, or surveys.
  • Communicate research findings on various types of diseases to health practitioners, policy makers, and the public.
  • Provide expertise in the design, management and evaluation of study protocols and health status questionnaires, sample selection, and analysis.

Epidemiologist Required Skills

When polled, Epidemiologists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Science: Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

  • Infectious Disease Specialist
  • Epidemiologist
  • Nurse Epidemiologist
  • Histopathologist
  • Public Health Epidemiologist

Job Opportunities for Epidemiologists

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 6,100 jobs in the United States for Epidemiologist. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.2% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 500 new jobs for Epidemiologist by 2026. There will be an estimated 600 positions for Epidemiologist per year.

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The states with the most job growth for Epidemiologist are South Carolina, Florida, and Nebraska. Watch out if you plan on working in Virginia, Oregon, or Oklahoma. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Epidemiologists Salary

The salary for Epidemiologists ranges between about $42,240 and $112,600 a year.

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Epidemiologists who work in New Jersey, District of Columbia, or Massachusetts, make the highest salaries.

How much do Epidemiologists make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Arizona $59,650
Arkansas $62,890
California $92,040
Colorado $60,550
Connecticut $86,250
District of Columbia $106,740
Florida $44,350
Georgia $64,160
Illinois $84,810
Indiana $74,640
Kansas $63,820
Kentucky $53,560
Louisiana $54,620
Maryland $77,330
Massachusetts $107,670
Michigan $72,820
Minnesota $71,870
Missouri $61,110
Montana $66,360
New Jersey $94,450
New Mexico $67,130
New York $91,880
North Carolina $82,820
Ohio $69,680
Oklahoma $68,530
Oregon $71,470
Pennsylvania $79,690
Tennessee $84,560
Texas $71,320
Virginia $67,110
Washington $102,490
West Virginia $51,910
Wisconsin $78,250

What Tools do Epidemiologists Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Epidemiologists:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Word processing software
  • Data visualization software
  • Structured query language SQL
  • Database software
  • SAS
  • Facebook
  • IBM SPSS Statistics
  • R
  • Geographic information system GIS software
  • Tableau
  • StataCorp Stata
  • ESRI ArcView
  • ESRI ArcInfo

How do I Become an Epidemiologist?

What kind of Epidemiologist requirements are there?

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where Epidemiologists Are Employed

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Below are examples of industries where Epidemiologists work:

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Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those thinking about becoming an Epidemiologist might also be interested in the following careers:

Career changers with experience as an Epidemiologist sometimes find work in one of the following fields:

References:

Image Credit: Ernst Haeckel via public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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