Physician assistants are trusted members of most medical teams who perform a variety of important procedures including therapies, diagnoses and examinations. Physician assistant may assist a surgeon during surgical procedures and even prescribe medications. The career of Pas is challenging and competitive with many demands on its practitioners, but it can additionally be enormously rewarding to witness the healing of injured or ill patients.
Missouri Physician Assistant responsibilities
As a physician assistant your responsibilities will include the practice of medicine under a doctor’s supervision. PAs do not take on the same responsibilities as a medical assistant who perform program tasks and clerical chores. Instead their roles are similar to those of a doctor, apart from the more complex responsibilities. The typical duties of a PA are taking the medical history of a patient, treating and examining patients, treating injuries of a less serious nature, evaluating and ordering laboratory work, and writing medical prescriptions.
Undergraduate Preliminary School
Most PAs begin their schooling as an undergraduate; however, there’re a few schools offering the program as a bachelor’s degree. There are also some Missouri schools that offer associate degree programs. Before you are admitted onto a bachelor’s degree program, you will be required to have a minimum of two years in college. If you’re planning to apply for a graduate diploma program, you will be required to have a four year diploma and a past working experience within the health care industry. According to the American Academy of Physician Assistants, you must additionally take undergraduate classes in English, Social science, and humanities as well as science classes. It is also a requirement that the science classes you take should contain Biology, Chemistry, math, computers, statistics and nutrition.
How to Become a Missouri Physician Assistant
Before becoming a licensed Missouri physician assistant, you will be required to complete an accredited physician assistant training program that is recognized by the ARC-PA (Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant Inc.). The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics states that over two thirds of these schools offer master’s degrees and the most of them offer bachelor’s degree. It is important that you choose a school that is accredited to offer Physician assistant programs.
Clinical Training and Certification
It usually takes about two years and two months to complete your accredited physician assistant program in Missouri. Microbiology, clinical medicine and ethics, biochemistry, anatomy, and physiology are some of the subjects that you will learn in your 1st year of study. In your 2nd year of study, you will take up a clinical position in a doctor’s office or in a health care institution. The classes taken in your second year will contain subjects such as radiology, surgical treatment, pediatrics, family medicine, and emergency medicine.
Missouri PAs Licensing and Examination
In all the 50 states of America you will require a license to become a physician assistant as well as completing an accredited PA program. You will also be required to pass a national examination from the NCCPA. It’s a multiple choice exam of surgical and medical information. Once you have passed your exam you will be recognized as a certified physician assistant in Missouri.
Salary and Career Info
The interactive chart above is a visual representation of the annual salary of Missouri 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 Schools in Missouri
Missouri State University: Missouri State’s physician assistant school has been accredited since 1990.
Saint Louis University: Saint Louis University is has been accredited since 1973. This school has graduated PAs for almost 40 years now. As one of the first physician assistant schools in Missouri, Saint Louis maintains a tradition of academic excellence and has earned a national reputation as a strong leader in physician assistant education.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, by 2018, the physician assistant jobs will have increased by 39 percent. To cut down on expenses, PAs will take over more physician tasks. Most of the development will be in the inner cities and rural areas of Missouri. The average annual salary for full time employee is $84,830; the hourly salary is $40.78. Those in the top ten percent of earn over $115,080 per year.
It is important that you gain patient care experience within a clinical sector for the successful completion of a PA program. During your college years, it is essential that you consider working as an emergency medical tech or even as a medical assistant.
List of All 3 Accredited PA Programs
The accrediting agency is ARC-PA and they have 3 fully accredited AL programs listed as of November 2014.
1. Missouri State University
Initial Accreditation Date: October 1, 1999
Next ARC-PA Review: March 2019
2. Saint Louis University
Initial Accreditation Date: June 1, 1973
Next ARC-PA Review: September 2020
3. University of Missouri – Kansas City (Provisional)
Initial Accreditation Date: September 6, 2013
Next ARC-PA Review: March 2016