Related job titles are: Physician Assistant (PA), Physician Assistant Certified (PAC), Physician's Assistant, Family Practice Physician Assistant, Neurosurgical Physician Assistant, Orthopaedic Physician Assistant, Cardiology Physician Assistant, Cardiothoracic Surgery Physician Assistant, or Cardiovascular Physician Assistant.
How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make? | Physician Assistant Salary
The median yearly salary for physician assistants was $86,410 in May 2010 (the most recent data available). The median annual salary is the salary at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. Employees in the lower 10 percent had an annual salary less than $57,450, and those employees in the top 10 percent earned greater then $117,720.
What Does a Physician Assistant Do? | Job Description
Physician assistants, also known as PAs, practice medicine under the direction and supervision of physicians and surgeons. They are formally trained to examine patients, diagnose injuries and illnesses, and provide treatment. Physician assistants are different from medical assistants. Medical assistants do routine clinical and clerical tasks; they do not practice medicine.
Physician assistants work in all areas of medicine, including primary care and family medicine, emergency medicine, and psychiatry. The work of physician assistants depends in large part on their specialty and what their supervising physician needs them to do.
Physician Assistant is one of CNNMoney.com "100 Best Jobs in America."
How to Become a Physician Assistant?
Physician assistants typically need a master's degree. Most applicants to masterís programs already have a bachelor's degree and some work experience. Then, they must complete an accredited educational program for physician assistants. That usually takes at least 2 years of full-time study and typically leads to a masterís degree. All states require physician assistants to be licensed.
Physician Assistant Classes and Courses | Degree Programs
Most applicants to physician assistant education programs already have a bachelorís degree and some healthcare-related work experience. However, admissions requirements vary from program to program. Many assistants already have experience as registered nurses, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), or paramedics before they apply to a physician assistant program. Physician assistant education programs usually take at least 2 years of full-time study.
Physician Assistant Jobs | Who is Hiring?
Employment of physician assistants is expected to increase 30 percent from 2010 to 2020, much faster than the average for all occupations.
As more physicians enter specialty areas of medicine, there will be a greater need for primary healthcare providers, such as physician assistants. Because physician assistants are more cost-effective than physicians, they are expected to have an increasing role in giving routine care.
Physician assistants also will be needed because the population in general is growing. More people means more need for healthcare specialists.
In addition, employment growth is expected because the large baby-boom generation is getting older. As they age, baby boomers will be increasingly susceptible to ailments and conditions such as heart attack, stroke, and diabetes. Physician assistants are expected to have an increasing role in keeping these people healthy and caring for them when they get ill.
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