How To Become A Physician Assistant

A Basic Guide On Becoming A P.A.

If you have considered entering the medical profession then it is likely you will have an opportunity to head down this career path. Nowadays, the need for medical professionals is growing and the number of job opportunities is on the increase. Among these positions is the physician’s assistant, a post where the individual assists doctors with medical procedures. Entering this occupation is exciting and can seem simple; however, it can be extremely challenging and requires various considerations before beginning the journey. This article will provide information on how to become a physician’s assistant ensuring you have all the knowledge you need to determine whether this is the career for you.

1. Complete A University Course

The first step to become a qualified physician’s assistant is to complete a physician assistant program at a university; however, to gain admission to the program you will be required to complete certain college courses. An example is the need for at least eight hours training in physiology and anatomy before applying to several programs. It is important to meet these requirements to ensure you have the correct prerequisite knowledge to handle the information presented on the university programs.

2. Complete Residencies And Shadow Professionals

To gain experience and knowledge in the field, it is necessary to complete additional residencies and shadow professional physician’s assistants when studying. This is often a requirement for graduation within the physician assistant programs and many schools will demand a minimum of 50 hours training. It is recommended, when shadowing professionals, that you shadow more than one practitioner to gain a broader perspective in the field.

3. Gain Positive References

The attainment of good references cannot be emphasized enough and is often neglected by students. All programs will request references upon application including one medical reference and preferably a professional reference. It is recommended that you try to obtain the reference of a professional physician’s assistant you may have worked with as this will be a great support to any application. It is also important to remember that the authority will be contacting your reference directly when the time comes; therefore you should know which communication method they prefer and inform them beforehand.

4. Prepare For Interviews

As part of the application for both admissions to a university program and an occupational position, the individual will be required to undergo an interview. It is essential that you prepare for this interview so that you are comfortable answering questions. Ideally, you should begin the interview with a short introduction on why you wish to become a physician’s assistant, then wait for questions to be asked. Always rehearse what you will be saying to ensure the presentation is confident and flows freely.

5. Dressing Appropriately

While dressing appropriately is linked to preparation for the interview, it must be mentioned separately due to its importance. To become a physician’s assistant you must be prepared to “play the part” and dress accordingly. The ideal dress would be conservative in design with smart trousers or skirt with a clean shirt. Do not consider short skirts or blouses showing cleavage as this is viewed as unprofessional.