Physician’s Assistant

Physician’s assistants help doctors by providing physical exams to patients. They work under the direct supervision of one or more doctors and depending on the state in which they work they are also able to treat certain types of minor illnesses and injuries they are allowed to order lab tests and x-rays and they can often prescribe some types of medication. Physician’s assistants are commonly referred to as “PAs” and they have varying responsibilities depending on the medical facility for which they work as well as the needs of the physician who oversees them. Physician’s assistants are vital to the success of many medical practices because they are able to handle physical examinations and some of the day-to-day and routine tasks that a doctor does not always have time to complete. Sometimes doctors are out of the office several days a week for surgery and physician’s assistants are able to see patients for scheduled appointments even when the doctor is away. Therefore a medical office can remain open even when a doctor is unavailable. In order to become a physician’s assistant it is not necessary to attend medical school. Instead a two-year physician’s assistant program must be completed. Some physician’s assistants choose to further their education past a two-year program so that they can specialize in a particular medical area. Nonetheless specialized physician’s assistants may never practice medicine or be referred to as a doctor and they must always work under the direct observation of a licensed physician. They must also be certified and licensed as physician’s assistants in order to work. According to the website www.jobdescriptions.net physician’s assistants can expect to earn a yearly salary between $50000 and $100000 per year.

Education Required: Associate's Degree
Avg Salary: $75000
High Salary: $100000
Low Salary: $50000
Tasks: Works under the supervision of a doctor.
Performs physical exams on patients.
Treats minor illnesses and injuries.
Orders lab tests and X-rays.
Also Called: PA
Doctor's Assistant
Healthcare Professional
Medical Assistant
Additional Resources: http://www.ehow.com/facts_5130469_job-description-physicians-assistant.html
http://careers.stateuniversity.com/pages/491/Physician-Assistant.html
http://www.jobdescriptions.net/health/physician-assistant/