UNC School of Medicine Department of Allied Health Sciences

The UNC School of Medicine founded the Department of Medical Allied Health Professions in 1970. Today, the Department of Allied Health Sciences houses seven primary programs; professions include physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy, among others. Let’s take a look at what allied health means for North Carolina and specific professions allied health professionals pursue.


According to NC State University’s Institute for Emerging Issues, researchers correctly anticipated job growth in the field of health care and a decline in others, such as manufacturing.
Between 1999 and 2009, more than 44 percent of job growth in the health care sector was due to growth of allied health jobs.

Who are allied health professionals? In the UNC School of Medicine, seven programs exist in the Department of Allied Health Sciences.

A Division of Clinical Laboratory Science student at UNC learns about cystic fibrosis during a class in early 2017.
DIVISION OF CLINICAL LABORATORY SCIENCE

WHAT: Clinical laboratory scientists, also called medical technologists, provide laboratory information and services needed for the diagnosis and treatment of disease.


DIVISION OF CLINICAL REHABILITATION AND MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING

WHAT: Rehabilitation counselors provide mental, developmental, and emotional support for people to overcome or manage personal, social, or psychological issues.


The Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy at the UNC School of Medicine offers both a research and a clinical track.
DIVISION OF OCCUPATIONAL SCIENCE AND OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY

WHAT: Occupational therapists help people across the lifespan participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities, also known as occupations.


PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT STUDIES
A second-year physician assistant studies student at the UNC School of Medicine completes a mock patient encounter.

WHAT: A physician assistant or physician associate is a health care professional who practices medicine as a part of a health care team with supervising physicians and other providers.


DIVISION OF PHYSICAL THERAPY
A UNC Health Care physical therapist works with a client at University Physical Therapy at the Orange County Sportsplex.

WHAT: Physical therapists are health care professionals who help patients reduce pain and improve or restore mobility. They often use treatment techniques to promote the ability to move, reduce pain, restore pain, and prevent disability.


DIVISION OF RADIOLOGIC SCIENCE
Division of Radiologic Science students at UNC-Chapel Hill work on a problem set during class in fall 2016.

WHAT: Radiologic scientists are health care professionals who focus on imaging for medical diagnosis, assessment, and treatment of disease.


A UNC Health Care patient get his hearing checked by an audiologist at the UNC Hearing and Communication Center.

WHAT: Speech and hearing sciences encompasses both speech-language pathology and audiology. Often, speech-language pathologists and audiologists treat children and adults who have difficulties with speech, swallowing, language, or hearing.

More information about the Department of Allied Health Sciences.