Physician Assistant Programs In Pennsylvania

pennsylvaniaHow To Become A Physician Assistant In Pennsylvania

If you have decided to work as a physician assistant in the state of Pennsylvania, you should know that you may need to spend as much as six years learning the basics of medicine in both academic and clinical settings, before you actually get to practice. Although becoming a physician assistant requires considerably less training than becoming a physician, PAs are a very important part of the medical team and they do need to have a deeper insight into some of the most important areas of medicine, such as patient care, treatment, diagnosis, surgery or examination.

With that in mind, it is important to firstly earn your Bachelor’s degree or your Associate’s degree, as this will provide you with basic knowledge, just enough to fill an entry-level position. The ARC-PA accredited physician assistant training programs will combine theoretical training in fields like quantitative methods, statistics, health care ethics or medical terminology with clinical training. Only after you have completed this amount of training you can move on and take your career a mile further by earning a Master’s Degree by completing a two-year physician assistant training program. The master’s degree will offer you an even deeper insight into the medical field, and courses in fields like pharmacology, clinical medicine, anatomy, pathology, physiology as well as medical laws and ethics.

Physician Assistant In Pennsylvania – Job Description

Physician assistants are widely regarded as an essential piece in every health care setting, not only because they work alongside nurses and physicians, but also because they can come in handy especially when one physician has a tremendous amount of workload to take care of. Physician assistants have limited freedom when it comes to practicing their profession, nonetheless they do enjoy more independence than nurses and they are allowed to diagnose and treat patients, to order and to interpret common tests like EKGs or x-rays, to assist the physician in surgeries, to make various rounds in hospitals and to prescribe medications.

Depending on the work setting, it sometimes happens that the physician assistant is also allowed to perform minor surgical interventions on the patient. Regardless of whether these health care providers work in private physician’s offices, state hospitals, emergency rooms, community health centers or within the armed forces, they will always have to work closely with a physician, as these two highly trained health care providers must develop a mutually beneficial and long lasting collaborative relationship in order to be able to practice their profession in a fast, efficient, professional and timely manner.

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Certification For Physician Assistants In Pennsylvania

Every physician assistant in Pennsylvania is required to go through the certification process by passing the PANCE exam which is administered by the NCCPA. As a matter of fact, the NCCPA actually administers two exams: the PANCE and the PANRE. The first one is the PANCE which is designed for those who are pursuing their initial certification, and must be taken within several months from the moment of graduation from the ARC-PA approved physician assistant training program. After receiving the certification, these health care professionals must move on to applying for their state license: the national certification is not enough in order for physician assistants to be able to work legally in the state of Pennsylvania.

The certification is, however, set to expire after six years – during the fifth or the sixth year of the certification maintenance cycle, it is crucial for all certified PAs to sit for the PANRE recertification examination. The PANCE involves an initial certification cost of $475.00, while the PANRE recertifying exam involves a recertification cost of $350.00.

Salary and Career Info

The interactive chart above is a visual representation of the annual salary of Pennsylvania PA’s compared to the national annual salaries, all based on the latest May 2013 Occupational Employment Statistics figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Physician Assistant Programs In Pennsylvania

If you have decided to take the first step towards becoming a certified and licensed physician assistant and to work in the medical industry in the state of Pennsylvania, then you should know that there are numerous choices at your disposal. For instance, you can opt for the Physician Assistant or Clinical Assistant studies offered by the Marywood University of Pennsylvania, or you can opt for the Physician Assistant Studies (24 month long) training program which is currently offered by the Mercyhurst University in Philadelphia. Another notable entry-level physician assistant training program is also offered by the Drexel University located in Loretto, while the Saint Francis University offers students a Master’s of Physician Assistant Sciences.

List of All 19 Accredited PA Programs

As of November 2014, the accrediting agency is ARC-PA and they have 19 fully accredited AL programs.

1. Arcadia University (D)

Initial Accreditation Date: April 1, 1996

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2018

Website: http://www.arcadia.edu/academic/default.aspx?id=425

2. Chatham University

Initial Accreditation Date: April 1, 1997

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2021

Website: http://www.chatham.edu/mpas/

3. Desales University

Initial Accreditation Date: April 1, 1997

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2017

Website: http://www.desales.edu/home/academics/graduate-studies/programs-of-study/mspas—physician-assistant

4. Drexel University

Initial Accreditation Date: September 1, 1972

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2015

Website: http://www.drexel.edu/physAsst/

drexel

5. Duquesne University

Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1993

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2019

Website: http://www.duq.edu/academics/schools/health-sciences/academic-programs/physician-assistant

duquesne

6. Gannon University

Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1978

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2017

Website: http://www.gannon.edu/Academic-Offerings/Health-Professions-and-Sciences/Graduate/Physician-Assistant/

7. King’s College

Initial Accreditation Date: April 1, 1979

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2017

Website: http://www.kings.edu/academics/undergraduate_majors/physicianassistant

kingscollege

8. Lock Haven University (D)

Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1997

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2017

Website: http://paportal.lhup.edu/PA/

9. Marywood University

Initial Accreditation Date: April 1, 1998

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2016

Website: http://www.marywood.edu/pa-program/

10. Misericordia University (Provisional)

Initial Accreditation Date: March 6, 2012

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2015

Website: http://www.misericordia.edu/misericordia_pg.cfm?page_id=990&subcat_id=108

misericordia

11. Penn State University (Provisional)

Initial Accreditation Date: September 6, 2013

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2016

Website: http://www.pennstatehershey.org/web/educationalaffairs/home/programs/physician-assistant-program

12. Pennsylvania College of Technology

Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1996

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2017

Website: http://www.pct.edu/schools/hs/pa/

13. Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

Initial Accreditation Date: April 1, 1998

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2018

Website: http://www.pcom.edu/Academic_Programs/aca_pa/aca_pa.html

14. Philadelphia University

Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1996

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2018

Website: http://www.philau.edu/paprogram/index.html

philau

15. Saint Francis University

Initial Accreditation Date: Septembe 1, 1980

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2016

Website: http://francis.edu/physician-assistant-science/

stfrancis

16. Seton Hill University

Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1997

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2021

Website: http://www.setonhill.edu/academics/graduate_programs/physician_assistant

17. Thomas Jefferson University (Provisional)

Initial Accreditation Date: March 7, 2014

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2016

Website: http://www.jefferson.edu/university/health_professions/departments/physician_assistant.html

18. University of Pittsburgh

Initial Accreditation Date: September 2009

Next ARC-PA Review: March 2018

Website: https://www.shrs.pitt.edu/PA/

pitt

19. University of the Sciences of Philadelphia (Provisional)

Initial Accreditation Date: September 2012

Next ARC-PA Review: September 2016

Website: http://www.physicianassistant.usciences.edu/