Five Common Myths About Physician Assistants, Busted.

PA Myth Busting

Today marks the first day of National Physician Assistant Week, a career path that has risen in demand by 300% in the past three years. PAs are in the 7th spot in Glassdoor’s list of top 25 best jobs in America, and up to 82% of PAs have reported high levels of job satisfaction.

Here are some common myths and misconceptions about PAs that underscore how great this career choice really is.

Myth 1: PA = Physician’s Assistant

Get that apostrophe out of here! PAs have their own special role in the patient-centered medical team, and they aren’t subordinate to physicians. PAs are highly trained, skilled individuals who are licensed to practice medicine, prescribe medication and treatments, make diagnoses, and assist in surgical procedures.

Myth 2: Patients aren’t happy seeing someone who isn’t a “real doctor”.

Actually, according to a recent survey from a Harris Poll, 93 percent of patients who recently saw a PA were very satisfied and agreed that PAs are trusted healthcare providers.

Myth 3: PAs can’t practice when a physician isn’t present.

Physician Assistants work alongside physicians, and both play very important roles in the medical team. The average PA sees about 60 patients a week, and there are no laws that require a physician to be on-site 100% of the time PAs are seeing patients.

Myth 4: PAs can’t see new patients.

Not true – PAs can consult with new patients without a physician required to be present.

Myth 5: PAs aren’t as important as physicians.

There has been plenty of research indicating that physician-PA teams are extremely effective in delivering high quality heath care. PAs also lower healthcare costs, enhance better coordination of care coordination, and increase access and elevate health outcomes for underserved patients and communities.

Read more at this link from AAPA.


Ariel Jacoby
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