Breaking Barriers Series: From Hospitality to Healthcare

Feb 12, 2021

Health care continues to be one of the top recession-proof industries. Learn how Lupe transitioned from working as a banquet server, to becoming a medical billing specialist at Kaiser Permanente.

Deciding to make a change for a secure futureLupe grew up in the Napa Valley, a small tourist town known for its wine industry and five-star resorts. Lupe got her first hospitality role right after high school at a local hotel and she loved being in a job where she got to meet people from all over the world on a daily basis. However, when the economic downturn happened, she witnessed many colleagues lose their jobs permanently and decided she wanted to make a career change.

Passion for providing service
Lupe left hospitality and obtained a role as a receptionist at a medical clinic that was geared at providing free to low cost services for local residents. She loved the mission of this clinic and felt that her skills in customer service and her passion for helping others would make her successful in this role.

Once Lupe worked for the clinic for a few years, she realized that with the skills she already had, plus acquiring some new skills through a short training program, she could make healthcare her life long career. She knew she wanted a career where she could serve others and make a positive impact in her community.

“When I would go to the hospital for routine checkups, I always loved how happy everyone was. From the receptionists, the nurses and doctors, you could tell everyone loved their job and it really showed in how they served their customers. I loved that and could see myself there.”

Making a dream a reality
Lupe took a short excel certification program and applied for her dream organization, Kaiser Permanente. She was hired as a receptionist, and after 3 years, she took a 6 month course to learn medical billing. She is now a medical billing specialist and plans to retire with Kaiser. Healthcare offers a variety of opportunities in various administration roles, nursing, and specializations such as X-ray technicians or phlebotomy.

Making the transition
Employment of medical and health services managers is projected to grow 32 percent in the coming decade, much faster than the average for all occupation.

Frontline workers have skills in customer service and customer experience, which are vital in health care patient facing roles.

Healthcare organizations have a variety of departments and job families which allow for growth and the opportunity for these companies to develop talent from within.

Specialized technician certifications are intended to be short and fast track directly into employment (X-ray technicians, lab technician, pharmacy technician just to name a few).

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