The 5 best states in the U.S. to work in healthcare

Susanna Kahr

Ever wondered which states are the best for healthcare employment? Well, the Kaiser Family Foundation recently ran a study to find out. They listed the top 15 states for healthcare employment, but here are our top 5 states according to employment and the reviews we’ve received here at kununu. Which state should you move to? Read on to find out… 

1. West Virginia

At 15%, West Virginia has the highest healthcare employment as a percent of total employment among all 50 U.S. states, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. And, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average wage for a healthcare professional is: $68,460. The reasons why healthcare professionals are so in demand right now are actually quite sad. West Virginia has the worst health in the nation according to almost every measure, its population is the country’s most obese and the state has the highest number of opioid-addicted individuals per capita! However, this does mean that West Virginia’s healthcare system has undergone huge reforms in recent years and there are lots of job openings for home health aides and researchers. 

Two of the top hospitals in West Virginia are the Charleston Area Medical Center and the West Virginia University Hospital. The Charleston Area Medical Center has a recommendation rate of 91%, one employee says, “CAMC has provided a stable work environment with opportunities for growth,” and another says there’s “room to grow and it’s family oriented.” The West Virginia University Hospital also has an impressive recommendation rate of 90% and employees say “I love my job it’s such a friendly positive workplace, it makes me proud,” and “overall my experience has been amazing. I am proud of the organization. I love going to work.” So, what are you waiting for, we reckon there’s a great healthcare job in West Virginia with your name on it! 

2. Maine

Maine makes the list because it has a healthcare employment rate as a percent of total employment of 14%! Wages are somewhat higher here too, with the average income for healthcare professionals being $83,920! Maine also ranks number 5 in the U.S. News & World Report’s ranking for healthcare quality and the state boasts great hospitals such as the Maine Medical Center and the Eastern Maine Medical Center. The Maine Medical Center has a recommendation rate of 100% and it’s easy to see why, when employees say things like “I’ve had a great experience working for my company and have moved up the ladder with promotions recently” and “I am surrounded by great helpful people on a regular basis.” The Eastern Maine Medical Center also has great reviews, with employees saying “ I had a wonderful experience at EMMC. The environment and management were very good” and “wonderful company to work for that gets better as time goes on.” Sounds like another great state to work in, right?! Why not check out the job openings and think about moving there?

3. Massachusetts

The fields of education and health services employ the most people in Massachusetts today, with healthcare employment making up 14% of overall employment! Massachusetts also led the way in universal health care coverage, with a plan enacted in 2006 that inspired former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. And, the average wage for healthcare professionals is listed as $97,600 by the Bureau for Labor Statistics! This alone makes it a great state to work in healthcare. 

Two of the best hospitals in Massachusetts are the Massachusetts General Hospital and the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Massachusetts General Hospital has featured on many lists here at kununu including our 9 healthcare companies with a great company culture and our top 10 healthcare employers to work for in the U.S. This hospital, which happens to be the first teaching hospital for Harvard, has a kununu score of 4.26 and a recommendation rate of 93%. Employees have told us “Mass General Hospital is a great place to work and there are many opportunities to grow,” and “I feel valued as an important member of the team.” Brigham and Women’s Hospital has a kununu score of 4.07 and a recommendation rate of 93% and employees say “there are many wonderful learning opportunities working here, I feel encouraged to keep learning and challenging myself” and “I am proud to work for this organization and the work I do feels meaningful every day.” If you don’t live in Massachusetts already, it looks like it would be worth moving there! 

4. Rhode Island

Like it’s neighbor, Massachusetts, Rhode Island also has a healthcare employment rate of 14% out of the overall employment! Today, biomedicine is one of Rhode Island’s major industries and the healthcare provided by this state ranks at number 5 in US News & World Report’s healthcare ranking. Two of the best hospitals in the state are the Miriam Hospital and Butler Hospital. The Miriam Hospital has a kununu score of 4.21 and a recommendation rate of 90% which is easy to see when employees say things like “I personally absolutely love my job as a nurse,” and “I love working for this company. It’s a safe, clean, friendly place where you can talk to co workers without a problem.” The Butler Hospital has equally good reviews and has a recommendation rate of 100% with one employee telling us “this hospital has a real community feel, staff are friendly and helpful, there’s free parking and competitive wages!” Rhode Island should also be on your list if you’re thinking of moving! 

5. Connecticut

We’re telling you, there’s really something about the north-east coast! Connecticut is also on our list as it has a healthcare employment rate of 13% compared to overall employment. Connecticut currently ranks as number 3 in U.S. News & World Report’s Rankings for Best States for Healthcare and ranks first in the nation for healthcare access. 

Two of the best hospitals in Connecticut are the Yale New Haven Hospital and Hartford Healthcare. The Yale New Haven Hospital is the main teaching facility for the Yale School of Medicine and the Yale School of Nursing. It’s also the flagship hospital of the Yale-New Haven Health System, Connecticut’s largest healthcare provider. Employees have given this hospital a kununu score of 3.95 and have told us “I worked with an amazing group of medical professionals that were supportive and encouraging” and that they appreciate the “great diversity and friendly work environment.” Hartford Healthcare in Hartford CT, has a kununu score of 3.88 with employees telling us that “I continue to enjoy my time with HHC” and that it’s a “great place to work that cares about patient care and happy employees.” So, if you’re convinced that the northeast is the place for you, you should absolutely consider Connecticut as an option too! 



Do you work in any of these states? We want to hear from you. What’s it like working for your employer, do you feel appreciated, well-compensated and looked after? Or is there room for improvement? Join us in our mission to make the world of work more transparent by leaving a review about your company on our site. 


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