Physician Assistant - Job Description, Duties, Education, Skills, Salary, & Growth

Physician Assistant




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Physician Assistant Job Description

 

Physician assistants (PAs) are licensed medical providers who diagnose and treat illnesses and diseases, including prescribing medication. Most PAs work in hospitals, clinics and physician offices under the supervision of a licensed physician. PAs are able to treat patients with autonomy within the framework of their relationship with the physician.

Physician assistant is an attractive job that offers the flexibility to transition into different areas of medicine without needing additional education and training beyond the initial 27 month average length of a PA program.

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Responsibilities

 

A physician assistant is a licensed medical provider that can diagnose and treat illness and disease. They can also prescribe medication for their patients. Due to their advanced education in general medical practices and procedures, which is modeled after physician’s educational experiences, PAs are given significant autonomy in treating patients.

PAs work as an integral part of a medical team. They have their own patients for which they make medical decisions and provide a wide range of diagnostic, therapeutic and preventative health maintenance services. Some of the specific services a PA can provide include:

  • Taking a patient’s medical history

  • Performing physical exams

  • Ordering laboratory tests and interpreting the results

  • Diagnosing and prescribing treatments for illness

  • Counseling patients

  • Assisting in surgery

  • Setting fractures

When working in a primary care setting, PAs are allowed to provide almost all of the clinical services that a physician can provide. This includes the performance of physical exams, diagnosing and treatment of recognized diseases. They can also prescribe necessary medications to their patients.

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Skills

 

Active Listening

Offering your full attention to an individual person or group in order to fully understand problems and their nature.

Communication

Must convey information and be able to acquire info from others effectively. Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Critical Thinking

Must use logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Judgment and Decision Making

Needs to be able to act autonomously and make difficult decisions that would benefit the patient or make corrections. Must consider all benefits and repercussions of potential actions and choose the appropriate one. 

Perception

Knowing why people act as they do and determine the best treatment options for them.

Complex Problem Solving

Be able to identify and solve complex problems by using knowledge and information you gather.

Coordination

Work with other healthcare professionals, mainly your supervising physician, to coordinate care and react to their actions. 

Monitoring

Be able to assess your patient's progress and your treatment path. Determine if there are actions to take to fix problems or improve methods.

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Working Conditions

 

Physician assistants make it possible for thousands of people to access quality health care. The PAs play a vital role in increasing patient access to care for rural and other underserved segments of the population. PAs may be the only health providers in rural and underserved areas.

PAs may work in specialties outside of the primary care setting. The professional physician assistant is trained to be flexible, adapting to work with physicians in primary care as well as medical and surgical specialties, as well as sub-specialties should the need arise.

A physician assistant's primary focus is patient care but may also undertake educational, administrative and research work. In a primary care setting, a PA can provide almost all of the clinical services a physician does. The physician assistant works under a written agreement of collaboration with a licensed physician. Under this agreement, the PA can make clinical decisions regarding patient diagnostics and treatment.

The physician’s assistant is responsible for providing a wide range of diagnostic, therapeutic, preventive and health maintenance services. The physician and the PA relationship is a staple of the physician assistant profession and is designed to enhance the availability and delivery of high-quality health care, especially to areas that are traditionally underserved.

The physical environment in which physician assistants work is usually a comfortable, well-lighted environment. If the PA is employed in a surgical position, standing for long periods of time and a great deal of walking may be required.

Work schedules will vary according to the setting in which the PA is practicing, such as a surgical suite or outpatient center. Schedules may also vary depending on the work routine of the collaborating physician. A typical work week may include rotations through weekend shifts, nights, and on-call scheduling and early morning hospital rounds to assess patient progress.

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Salary Outlook

Title Company Location Posted
02.05.2018
The Physician Assistant maintains the standards of professional practice and demonstrates competence for patient care through continuous assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementing and evaluating patient care and education. The Physician...
06.20.2018
In an environment of continuous quality improvement, the Physician Assistant, in conjunction with the Physician/s and clinical staff, are responsible for exemplary patient health care and continuity of medical services under the direction of the...
06.20.2018
VCU Health System's Internal Medicine - Heart Failure and Transplant Section is seeking a full time Physician Assistant to provide medical and/or surgical care and treatment to a specific patient population under the supervision of physician(s)....
06.20.2018
- Masters degree is required VCU Health System's Internal Medicine - Hematology/ Oncology is seeking a full time Physician Assistant to provide medical and/or surgical care and treatment to a specific patient population under the supervision...
06.22.2018
The Physician Assistant will be an integral member of the emergency team and be flexible in responding to the varying demands of patient care in a Level One Trauma Center. This is a professional clinical position at University Health working in...
06.20.2018
Under the general supervision of a physician, the Physician Assistant is responsible for providing varied medical services, which may include: obtaining complete medical history and performing a physical examination; ordering and interpreting...
06.22.2018
The Physician Assistant will perform direct patient care under the supervision of attending physicians in a primarily outpatient setting. This position directly reports to the Chief/ Chairman of the Otolaryngology Service Line and University...
06.20.2018
VCU Health System's is seeking a full-time Physician Assistant for the Surgery-Trauma which is the regions primary provider of advanced trauma and critical care services. PA responsibilities will include....evaluate trauma and critical care...
06.20.2018
The Physician Assistant or Nurse Practitioner provides occupational health services and performs selective medical services under the direction of clinic physicians to ensure effective and efficient delivery of care to patients of St. Cloud...
04.30.2018
JOB SUMMARY: Provides Physician Assistant duties during inpatient medical assessments and interventions under the direction and supervision of the physician. Participates in and enhances the medical care provided by the MIMS physician group....
06.14.2018
Urology Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner Excellent opportunity for a nurse practitioner/physician assistant to join six urologists, one office practice physician, and three other allied health professionals as a member of our...
06.14.2018
Urology Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner Excellent opportunity for a nurse practitioner/physician assistant to join six urologists, one office practice physician, and three other allied health professionals as a member of our...
03.28.2018
PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT - DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHIATRY CHILD/ADOLESCENT CLINIC Job Duties: Perform direct patient care including psychiatric diagnostic evaluations and medication management services with physician supervision with children and their...
06.20.2018
Master's Degree Vascular Surgery Physician Assistant Opportunity Lynchburg, VA Centra Medical Group, located in beautiful Lynchburg, VA, is currently seeking a Physician Assistant for our Vascular Surgery team. Position duties include a...
06.21.2018
The Physician Assistant provides medical consultation, follow-ups, routine patient care and performs minor office procedures. The position requires population specific competencies as a component of the annual compliance program of the Sheridan...
  1. Physician Assistant Boston, MA Mass. Eye and Ear Infirmary
    The Physician Assistant maintains the standards of professional practice and demonstrates competence for patient care through continuous assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementing and evaluating patient care and education. The Physician...
  2. Physician Assistant Marietta, OH Memorial Health System
    In an environment of continuous quality improvement, the Physician Assistant, in conjunction with the Physician/s and clinical staff, are responsible for exemplary patient health care and continuity of medical services under the direction of the...
  3. Physician Assistant Richmond, VA VCU Health System
    VCU Health System's Internal Medicine - Heart Failure and Transplant Section is seeking a full time Physician Assistant to provide medical and/or surgical care and treatment to a specific patient population under the supervision of physician(s)....
  4. Physician Assistant Richmond, VA VCU Health System
    - Masters degree is required VCU Health System's Internal Medicine - Hematology/ Oncology is seeking a full time Physician Assistant to provide medical and/or surgical care and treatment to a specific patient population under the supervision...
  5. Physician Assistant Shreveport, LA University Health System
    The Physician Assistant will be an integral member of the emergency team and be flexible in responding to the varying demands of patient care in a Level One Trauma Center. This is a professional clinical position at University Health working in...
  6. Physician Assistant Boston, MA Boston Medical Center
    Under the general supervision of a physician, the Physician Assistant is responsible for providing varied medical services, which may include: obtaining complete medical history and performing a physical examination; ordering and interpreting...
  7. Physician Assistant Shreveport, LA University Health System
    The Physician Assistant will perform direct patient care under the supervision of attending physicians in a primarily outpatient setting. This position directly reports to the Chief/ Chairman of the Otolaryngology Service Line and University...
  8. Physician Assistant Richmond, VA VCU Health System
    VCU Health System's is seeking a full-time Physician Assistant for the Surgery-Trauma which is the regions primary provider of advanced trauma and critical care services. PA responsibilities will include....evaluate trauma and critical care...
  9. PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT St. Cloud, MN CentraCare Health
    The Physician Assistant or Nurse Practitioner provides occupational health services and performs selective medical services under the direction of clinic physicians to ensure effective and efficient delivery of care to patients of St. Cloud...
  10. Physician Assistant Springfield, MA Sisters of Providence Health System
    JOB SUMMARY: Provides Physician Assistant duties during inpatient medical assessments and interventions under the direction and supervision of the physician. Participates in and enhances the medical care provided by the MIMS physician group....
  11. Physician Assistant Bangor, ME Eastern Maine Medical Center
    Urology Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner Excellent opportunity for a nurse practitioner/physician assistant to join six urologists, one office practice physician, and three other allied health professionals as a member of our...
  12. Physician Assistant Bangor, ME Eastern Maine Medical Center
    Urology Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner Excellent opportunity for a nurse practitioner/physician assistant to join six urologists, one office practice physician, and three other allied health professionals as a member of our...
  13. PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT Iowa City, IA University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
    PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT - DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHIATRY CHILD/ADOLESCENT CLINIC Job Duties: Perform direct patient care including psychiatric diagnostic evaluations and medication management services with physician supervision with children and their...
  14. PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT Lynchburg, VA Centra Health
    Master's Degree Vascular Surgery Physician Assistant Opportunity Lynchburg, VA Centra Medical Group, located in beautiful Lynchburg, VA, is currently seeking a Physician Assistant for our Vascular Surgery team. Position duties include a...
  15. Physician Assistant Sheridan, WY Sheridan Memorial Hospital
    The Physician Assistant provides medical consultation, follow-ups, routine patient care and performs minor office procedures. The position requires population specific competencies as a component of the annual compliance program of the Sheridan...