Physician Assistant Career Guide
Physician Assistant Career Ratings
Real-Life Physician Assistant Job Profiles
At present, medical care has become easily accessible. Gone are the days where one must wait long hours to see their healthcare provider. Whether the doctor is in or not, patients may now be provided the medical attention that they need. But this was not the case a few decades ago. The rising demand for medical care has created a shortage of physicians which created the need for healthcare professionals that may perform some of their routine work to ease their load. They are now called physician assistants.
Physician assistants are health care professionals licensed to practice medicine with the supervision of physicians. They examine patients and review their medical information, diagnose illnesses and injuries, provide treatment, prescribe medicine, educate patients and their families, and research the latest treatments to ensure the quality of patient care. They work in all areas of medicine but the extent to which they must be supervised by physicians vary from state to state.
To become a physician assistant, one must already have an undergraduate degree with coursework in science, and at least 2 years of experience in healthcare, before applying to a physician assistant program. This program usually takes at least 2 years to complete. Physician assistants are required to have a license before they can start practice and must obtain hours of continuing education to maintain their certification. They will also need to take a recertification exam every 10 years. Physician assistants may also pursue a specialty by completing postgraduate education programs in their areas of interest.
Being a physician assistant means that you get to practice medicine but with lesser years of schooling than physicians. And because of the rising need for medical professionals, this is one of the more secure jobs to have. As physician assistants can specialize, career options are plenty for them. However, as with other professionals in healthcare, physician assistants must also work long hours, on irregular shift schedules, and sometimes work on call. Another major downside would also be that although they are doing the work that a physician does, their pay will never match that of a physician, and will always function under their supervision.
As with other healthcare professionals, a good physician assistant is one that has compassion, and at the same time emotional stability. They must also have problem-solving skills and good communication skills as they deal with patients and their concerns. If this description fits you, then this career might be for you!
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