Chemistry

Physician Assistants as a Filling Gap

SSN CASPA ID As she gave the woman’s hand a squeeze, having administered her a dosage of intravenous medicine, I watched days later in owe as the woman’s face transformed from a state of near hopelessness, to one of positive expectation, convinced now, more than ever I had chosen the right career path. The place was a small health center in my home town, and the woman had been diagnosed of liver cirrhosis, and had been visibly agitated convinced that the end had come for her. She was a waitress in one of the five coffee centers in my home town and lived alone with her six year old daughter. I had known her all my life and couldn’t help the elation of pride I felt working with Elizabeth Gobber PA-C. It was my sixth job shadowing experience in health care delivery but it was my first with a Physician Assistant.
I had previously shadowed Dr. Keith Shuey, a rural family doctor who has had great experience with patients of varying kinds, Dr. William Coady, an urban family physician from whom I learnt so much, Dr. Asha Wurdeman, a Geriatric Physician who treats her patients with so much compassion that re-enforces my conviction that health care is a perfect synonym for community service, Dr. Jodi Hedrick, OB/GYN from whom I learnt how physicians can truly be best friends with patients, and Dr. Judith Scott, OB/GYN who offered me the rear opportunity to observe two surgeries and follow her during her round and clinic appointments.
I graduated from Wayne State University in August 2010 having majored in Biology, Chemistry Health Science and psychology. I believe I was born with a heart to serve, and that perhaps was responsible for the great affinity I had for my service at a community service group in my school I had the rear privilege to lead. The memories of the smiles on the faces of the retirees to whom we sang Christmas carols every Christmas is something I consider of great value until this moment. The kids for whom we packaged and served food linger today in my mind. I am driven by a desire to serve, especially the underserved in the community, and that again was responsible for my switch from pharmacy to pursuit of a career in medicine.
In my mind’s eyes, no other school epitomizes health care training better than SLU. The 25th rank awarded the Physician Assistant Education in SLU in the 2012 edition of News and World Report Best Graduate School was to me, in reality No1. Has your school not maintained a 98 percent first time pass rate in PANCE?
I am confident I will be greatly challenged at your school’s PA education and will come out equipped to do what I have always wanted to do – serve the underserved.
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The Increasing Role of the Physician Assistant
The role of the physician assistant has increased over the past decades in response to the challenges faced in our health care delivery supply, the changing health care need of the population and the increasing cost of health care delivery. Since the development of the PA profession in the mid 1960s, physician assistants have continued to be in increasingly high demand to supplement the services rendered by physicians. AAPA census reports have shown over the years that clinically serving physician assistants have increased, as physicians and patients alike have found them increasingly needful in the health care industry.
Majorly, they have improved access to health care as they have been proven to handle large volume of patients in primary health care services with ease. they provide quality care, conduct examination on patients, diagnose and treat illnesses, educate patients, assist in surgery and prescribe medications. The use physician assistants has resulted in an increase in patients flow since they create room for physicians to focus on the more critically sick patients, while the PA takes charge of chronic conditions, patients’ education and follow ups, thus improving access to health care.
As the cost of health care increases, and health care service providers are forced to make changes resulting from a decrease in re-imbursement and the increasing need to cut cost, physician assistants have taken on a role that help increase health care productivity at cost effective level. In Steve Crane, Ph.D., executive vice president and CEO of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, view, the use of physician assistants has spread not only to primary health needs, but also to highly specialized practices.
Since PAs do their jobs with a high level of professional and ethical discipline, there has been a significant improvement in patients, and physician satisfaction. Physicians who started out engaging a PA with stated precaution are developing greater confidence in the professionalism of the PA. In the 2010 AAPA census report, the use of physician assistants was discovered to have spread from primary health services, across intensive/critical care units of hospitals, in and out patients unit of hospitals, hospital emergency rooms, free standing health care center, surgical centers, to mention but a few.
Physician assistants are filling a gap in our health care delivery system in such ways that not only control cost, but improves accessibility and delivery effectiveness. That is perhaps why they are present in all fifty states of the union in hundreds, and sometimes thousands. I am convinced that the cost effectiveness PAs bring stands out as a reliable model of sustainability for our health care system.

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