What is A Physician Assistant (PA)?
Physician Assistants are healthcare professionals trained to provide patient care under the supervision of a physician. Physician Assistants have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and commonly a master’s degree in health care. They complete an average of 27 months of training in a certified program after completion of undergraduate work. The design of physician assistant programs is very similar to medical schools but condensed in to a shorter time frame. It includes intensive class time followed by clinical rotations through multiple specialties. Upon completion of training PAs must pass a board certification exam administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants. Additionally, they must be licensed by the state and obtain continuing medical education credits in order to maintain licensure.
All Physician Assistants Can:
- Conduct physical exams
- Diagnose and treat medical illnesses
- Order and interpret tests, including labs and imaging
- Develop treatment plans
- Counsel on preventive health care
- Write prescriptions
At Ocotillo Internal Medicine we are fortunate to have highly qualified physician assistants that work alongside with Dr. Hall, Dr. Maurice, and Dr. Hackenyos. One of our physicians is always in the office so if needed the physician assistant can immediately consult with the physician. As noted in their biographical information, each of our physician assistants has special areas of interest and often additional training in those areas.
The physician assistants often have openings available to see patients for same day or next day sick visits but are also available to complete annual exams.