What Is A Hospitalist Physician Assistant Or HPA?
Just like the name implies, a hospitalist PA is a skilled and highly trained physician assistant who works in the hospital care field. Just like any other physician assistant, regardless of his or her field of specialization, the hospitalist PA also works under the supervision of a licensed and certified physician, and part of the duties and responsibilities of the hospitalist PA include evaluating and treating patients that have been recently admitted to the hospital, treating illnesses ad injuries, conducting physical examinations, diagnosing and treating various conditions, prescribing medications and such. Moreover, it is also the duty of the hospital physician assistant to assist surgeons during surgery, as well as to closely monitor the health status of patients.
How To Become A HPA In The United States Of America?
After getting your Bachelor’s Degree, your Master’s Degree, your certification and your licensure as a physician assistant (all of which are required prior to pursuing your specialization in the field), you must enroll in a 12-month post graduate Physician Assistant Fellowship program, in the field of Hospital Internal Medicine. The purpose of these year-long post graduate programs is to help graduate PAs gain all the skills, knowledge and medical expertise required for filling a position in a hospital care management. The curriculum of this post-graduate training program is diversified, and it focused not only on didactic instruction but also on direct patient care clinical experience. The program is based upon the core competencies of physician assistants, and the fellowship also includes numerous medical specialty rotations that last between two and four weeks in length.
The goals of the post-graduate HPA training program are fairly simple and straightforward, as it aims to help students pinpoint the systematic and the logistical measures that must be taken within that particular health care setting in order to improve the quality of the medical care each patient receives, to develop a deep and broad knowledge base of the common diseases for which patients are often hospitalized, having an in-depth understanding in the field of pathophysiology, manage patients effectively throughout their entire stay in the hospital, develop keen verbal skills, learn practice management, and so forth.
If you have decided to pursue a career as a physician assistant in hospital medicine after having graduated from an ARC-PA accredited physician assistant training school, then it is of utmost importance to make sure that the fellowship/the specialization training program that will help you gain the knowledge and the set of skills you need to work in the field of hospital internal medicine is also accredited and reviewed by the Accreditation Review Commission on the Education of Physician Assistants, or the ARC-PA institution described above. In addition to this, it is also vital to make sure that the specialization program is reviewed and approved by the APPAP, or the Association of Postgraduate Physician Assistant Programs, which oversees all the fellowships that allow physician assistants to specialize in one of the many different medical subspecialties, ranging from internal medicine and emergency care to radiology and others.
Certification For Physician Assistants In Hospital Medicine
After having graduated from the physician assistant training program and the fellowship/specialization training program, it is important to understand that in order to work in the United States of America, you will need to be both licensed and certified. That being said, in order to become a certified hospitalist PA, you must firstly become a certified physician assistant by passing the PANCE examination which is administered by the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistant, or the NCCPA. Only after becoming a Physician Assistant – Certified you can actually move on to pursuing your CAQ credential, or your Certificate of Added Qualification, which shows that you have received thorough and in-depth medical training in a medical subspecialty (in this situation, in hospital care or hospital medicine medicine).
In order to be eligible for the CAQ in Hospital Medicine, you must gather all the necessary pre-requisites, including at least 150 credits of Hospital Medicine-relevant continuing medical education, along with a minimum of 3,000 hours of work in the hospital setting. In addition to this, it is also important to show proof of patient care requirements that derive from the SHM core competencies, along with the ability to perform at least 10 different hospital medicine-related procedures, under the supervision of the licensed physician.