Physicians assistants hold vital places in the American healthcare system. Many of their responsibilities mirror the doctors they work with. They help to diagnose and treat patients. Are you wondering what a physician assistant (PA) does or what it takes to get accepted into the best PA program? Here’s a look at what it takes to become a PA. Also we’ve found the top three ranked university programs for aspiring physician assistants.
What Is a PA?
A physician assistant is a certified and state-licensed healthcare professional who works as part of a physician’s team. This definition is courtesy of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA). A licensed PA can independently practice medicine and provide treatment for patients nationally.
Steps to Become a PA
- Obtain a Bachelor of Arts degree. Science and health care programs provide prerequisite requirements.
- Gain a minimum of one year experience in a medical field.
- Apply and graduate from an accredited master’s degree-level PA program.
- Pass the physician assistant national certifying exam (PANCE).
Top 3 Universities for PA Programs
1. The University of St. Augustine
The University of St. Augustine College of Health Sciences is one of the premier universities for PA programs. They offer diverse PA program. Students gain necessary academic and clinical experience in their program. This gives them an advantage in the workforce. due to the necessary academic and clinical experience provided. The University of St. Augustine also uses a direct patient centered approach to student instruction. This helps to instill in them the required skills to excel in medicine.
2. Duke University
Duke University takes an evidence-based approach to student learning. This helps to provide students with the skills needed to work as a physician assistant. This university strives to support students’ creativity and mold them into future professionals. This is their strategy to cultivate a better healthcare system as a whole. Duke University also supports the idea that students must also have a voice. This is important for students to strive in an active community.
3. University of Iowa
The University of Iowa is rated as one of the top PA programs nationally. They allow their students to get real-world experience like medical students. Their courses are also designed to help students become expert enduring learners. They also adapt up-to-date technology and theories in their program for practicing physicians. This approach prepare students for their professional careers better. It also helps them to have a positive impact on the lives of their workplaces and patients.
Benefits of Becoming a Physician Assistant
- Job security: Median income of a PA is $93,442
- Career flexibility: You can work under physicians with various specialties
- Less school: Six-year graduate degree
- Same responsibilities as a doctor: This includes conducting examinations, treating illnesses and prescribing medications
- Easier workload: Not as rigid as a that of a physician
The job outlook is vast for students lucky enough to receive a physician’s assistant degree from any of these top schools. The U.S. Bureau of Labor also expects the need for PAs to grow more than 30 percent. This increases the likelihood of finding long-term job security. Most importantly, it is a prestigious and respected career choice that will inspire future PA students to achieve it.
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