The physician assistant training and education may be daunting at a glance. This is because it entails years of studying and continuing education that seems to be endless. You really have to work hard to get certified. However, becoming a physician assistant is very rewarding as you also get to practice medicine under the supervision of a doctor. Perseverance, patience, skill and passion are your ticket to enter and stay in the medical field. Read on to have a quick overview on physician assistant training.
First of all, one of the requirements of becoming a physician assistant is that you need an associate or an undergraduate degree. Your course selection should include hard sciences such as Biology, Anatomy and others. Afterwards, you will also be asked to complete certain amount of hours in medical settings such as clinics and hospitals. You will need this for the advancement of your knowledge and skills. It is a good opportunity for you to be exposed to such environment, so you can adapt easily.
For students who have unusual situations, there are two options that they can choose from, the online degree program and distance learning program. Online physician assistant programs are offered to students who are already practicing but want to pursue their education so that they can advance. Most of the managerial positions in hospitals are offered to employees who finished an advanced physician assistant training program. However, you still need to take examinations. In addition, practical exams must be done personally. The best thing about online courses is that you have control over the schedule.
Distance learning, on the other hand, is very much like the online physician assistant program. The only difference is that you will study by yourself as there will be no online classes. What you need to ensure prior to embarking on this option is that the physician assistant school of your choice is accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc. or ARC-PA. After the completion of the education needed, you will be allowed to take the certification exam. You need to pass this to become a physician assistant.
Aside from classroom activities, the physician assistant training also includes laboratory instructions in various medical fields. You may be required to accrue both volunteer and paid hours as it will increase your chances of being hired quickly and get a better physician assistant job. Often, students are hired by the clinics and hospitals where they volunteer though.
Physician assistant training not just teaches the necessary skills but other qualifications as well. You will also be taught on how to have fine bedside manner, how to handle emergency situations and how to have emotional stability. The training and education is a lifetime effort as the needs of the patients are constantly changing. You need to keep up with the changes to effectively practice in this field.