As of Fall Semester 2015, there are EIGHT (8) accredited Physician Assistant programs in California. The program must be approved by California’s Department of Consumer Affairs Physician Assistant Board.
You can verify any program’s proper accreditation on California’s Physician Assistant Board Here. There are 9 programs listed as approved, but the Physician Assistant program at San Joaquin Valley College will end Fall 2015.
There are standard prerequisites for each program, and many of these prerequisites can be taken at either a local California Community College or Cal State/University of California. So, if you have a degree from a healthcare field, there’s a high likelihood you’ve already completed at least some of the needed prerequisites. For prospective students in Bakersfield, Ca, there is a Kern County Community Satellite associated with Stanford’s Physician Assistant Program. The purpose of Stansford’s Community Satellite program is to recruit prospective students from the Bakersfield area. Regardless of which Physician Assistant Program you pursue, there will be a core set of prerequisites that will need to be taken:
Physician Assistant Program Prerequisites:
- Human Anatomy with lab (4 unit minimum)
- Human Physiology with lab (4 unit minimum)
- English 101 or Equivalent (4 unit minimum)
- Microbiology with lab (5 unit minimum)
- General Chemistry with lab (5 unit minimum)
- College Algebra (5 unit minimum)
- Introduction to Psychology (3 unit minimum)
- Introduction to Sociology (3 unit minimum)
Physician Assistant Clinical Prerequisite
Some of the Physician Assistant Programs require at least some experience giving direct patient care. As an example, the Physician Assistant Primary Care Associate program at Stanford requires that the applicant have at least 3,000 hours of hands-on patient care.
So, what would qualify as “hands-on patient care”? According to the program requirements, some examples would be working as one of the following: Physical Therapist, Radiology Technician, EMT / Paramedic, Nurse (RN or LVN), Corpsman or Military Medic, or Back Office Medical Assistant. Other allied healthcare experience will be evaluated individually. The purpose of this clinical prerequisite is to make sure the prospective student has demonstrated the proper skill set to successfully complete the Physician Assistant program. Paid & volunteer hours are both considered acceptable.
Physician Assistants (PAs) play a critical role inside the medical field. In order to explain how to become a physician assistant, let us first examine what a PA is. Physician assistants are generally health-care experts licensed to practice medicine under the direction of a medical doctor. Physician assistants perform several tasks such as physical checkups of patients, arrangement of diagnostic testing and take part in interpreting test results. They also help with diagnosing and treatment of health conditions, writing medical prescriptions, and counseling patients on health care and preventative medicine. Basically, Physician assistants have the authority to do almost everything a medical doctor can do.
Physician assistant jobs are all encompassing as they relieve much of the burden placed on a doctor’s work-load. With the vast responsibility placed on doctors in all areas of medicine that consists of physician practices and all medical areas in hospitals, physician assistants are in great demand. This medical profession is an excellent option for people who are looking for a career that is both rewarding in pay and in job-fulfillment. Additionally, PAs will go to various health institutions including nursing homes for follow up with their health care support. Many PAs can also work in different specialty fields such as pediatrics, internal medicine, emergency surgery, pediatrics, geriatrics, orthopedics, and other types of medical specializations. One of the best rewards of a career as a physician assistant is you don’t have all the demands of a physician so you are able to have a life outside of the workplace. This life-work-balance is key to a long and enjoyable professional career.
The Path On How To Become A Physician Assistant In Bakersfield Ca
To become a Physician Assistant, you will take mostly the same courses and pre-requisites as a doctor would, but you do need to participate in all of the exact same internships or residencies as physicians do. Physician Assistants should have studied from an approved Physician Assistant program and pass the national certification exam to acquire a license or regular nurse jobs. Once you secure a physician assistant job, you will be under strict guidelines and mentoring of a medical doctor. The level of the participation by the physician assistant within the examination and carrying out of treatment will be determined by the acuteness and complexity of the patient’s situation and the experience, training, and preparation of the physician assistant as assessed by the doctor. The doctor and physician assistant will work with each other to assign patient services, as well as the mutually agreed upon recommendations for practice of their work facility.
Like the medical doctors they serve, Physician Assistants can follow a lot of high paying and challenging career paths which are all extremely rewarding. In case you are looking for a career in health care, being self-motivated, enjoy helping other people in need, and have a minimum of two years of university education, a career as a Physician Assistant in Bakersfield Ca may be the option for you. A Physician Assistant program is usually a 2 year program delivered over a 24 month period. The first year consists of clinical science courses as well as the second year includes clinical training delivered inside the consecutive 12 month period. PAs are needed to take ongoing medical education classes and must retake a re-certification test to maintain their national certification. Typically, CPR Certification is required as well.
With physician assistant jobs now in fantastic demand and expected to improve in demand within the coming years, the Physician Assistant medical profession is well worth thinking about for anybody seeking a rewarding career in the medical field. Now that you know how to become a Physician Assistant, research the required pre-requisites in order to begin your studies at Cal State Bakersfield.
Physician Assistant Salaries in 2015
People’s interest in physician assistants in the past couple of years has been constantly changing, encountering lower and higher levels of interest. Still, analyzing the statistical data, we easily realize that the current medical situation says that physician assistants are still in demand.
Physician assistant salaries in 2015 vary from a state to another and the salaries also depend on what educational background each PA (physician assistant) has. As an example to think in exact amounts, we could take California. In California, physician assistant salaries in 2015 reach an annual wage of $100.000. If you think of the amount, it’s above the average of these salaries across the United States.
Similarly to California, there are other states where they are well-rewarded financially speaking. In other states, their situation is a bit more difficult. One of the more difficult places to work as a physician assistant is Hawaii. In comparison with the annual $100.000, their $60.000 to $65.000 per year isn’t at all encouraging. However, even if we minimize the annual amount to $60.000, it’s still better than a lot of other jobs.
As health is very important, the medical field is forever expanding and under development. If you plan to have a stable career as a physician assistant, you will be very happy with all physician assistant salaries in 2013, regardless of the state. If the payment is more important and you can afford it, you can even move to a different state and get a higher payment. Even if the latter is the situation, please keep in mind that these salaries are somewhat connected to the appropriate living expenses. That means that places paying more for medical jobs are usually more expensive to live in. So, it’s for your best to gather information on living expenses and other aspects before thinking that one city’s job openings for physician assistants would be better than another city’s job openings.
While some jobs can be learn on the way, physician assistants can’t get a job if they are not trained. Even if you watched training videos and you’ve read dozens of medical books, it’s still not enough. What is enough – on the other hand – is getting your certification. Of course, prior to being certified, you should consider having a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree if possible and even participating at different trainings held for those physician assistants who have their master’s degrees.
To consider statistics, we will now list some very important facts for you, all on physician assistant jobs and physician assistant salaries in 2013, as well as before:
- In 2010, the nationwide median annual payment for physician assistants was $86,000, which comes down to $41 per hour, a great payment
- By 2020 (at least by 2020, and probably even after) physician assistant job openings will face a constant increase
- It is estimated that at least 24,000 new physician assistants will be hired by 2020
- While 2015 is not over yet, the annual salaries that are estimated this far are great and encouraging
- Every physician assistant, even as a beginner, must have finished a master’s degree. Many physician assistant students are often working RN jobs in Bakersfield Ca as they go through school.
If you want to find out more, check on the latest job openings in Bakersfield Ca or look for certification programs so that you will be trained as a physician assistant.
Physician Assistant Schools
Physician assistants are professionals within the medical industry, demanded by the patients’ needs increasingly as years pass. The past 5 to 10 years have proved that people are trying not to neglect their conditions (medically) anymore. Also, the elderly are the ones to really pay the required amount of attention. Thus, physician assistant – as a career selection – is a great option and opportunity all by itself.
Before choosing between physician assistant schools, you should learn about what this job involves and what to expect – regarding salaries – as a trained physician assistant. So, this should already give you a hint, because physician assistants can’t learn their duties and all they need to know on their own. While various other fields such as IT allow people to learn without teachers, the medical system rarely encounters such occurrences.
As training, every physician assistant must have the bachelor’s degree as well as a master’s degree. Once these degrees are complete, you might also choose to read more and study more about this field, on your own. Additionally, some physician assistants might even put up YouTube videos to help their less-experienced mates (we are now referring to other physician assistants). Also, some websites and forums provide valuable learning materials of all types and it’s only a matter of research and patience to get your hands on one of those!
Thinking of salaries, it’s a true motivation to think of such a career and select between elite physician assistant schools. The “big average” (if we might call it that way) of the annual income in the United States – as a physician assistant – statistically analyzed in 2010 was $84.000. The salaries of physician assistants might have slightly changed now in 6 years, but the median (the average) is still around the same figures.
Normally, as it goes with any other medical or non-medical profession, the salaries clearly depend on the state and on the institution. Physician assistants work in clinics, as well as they are allowed to work in other health facilities.
Also, it has been announced that the job openings for physician assistants will increase by 2020! Let us now consider some great physician assistant schools. We will only describe some of the schools, because there are frankly a lot of them.
University of Southern California Primary Care Physician Assistant Program
The University of Southern California has been maintaining and developing these programs since years and it was all very successful, thinking of what the students were able to achieve afterwards.
Duke University School of Medicine Physician Assistant Program
Another highly successful training program, the Duke University School of Medicine program is one of the best physician assistant schools. They say that their program is where the physician assistant profession is born!
University of South Dakota Physician Assistant Studies
The University of South Dakota can also be mentioned as part of the very best US physician assistant schools. All of their students – which is quite an achievement – have managed to be positioned as physician assistants, after finishing their studies at this university. Needless to say, it’s a great option!
Physician Assistant Jobs
A physician assistant or better known as a physician associate is a healthcare professional that has been trained in the medical field. Every physician assistant’s work is closely related to the medical field and everything necessary to prevent and treat diseases and injuries that occur in humans. Usually, physician assistant jobs are only available if the assistant can work in a doctor’s or licensed physician’s office.
Most physician assistants are available at any hospital, clinic and places that offer healthcare services and training centers for physician assistants. The main scope of physician assistant jobs is to assist with the everyday duties of the supervising doctor and handle the patient’s medical history, conduct medical examinations and procedures, order treatments, diagnose diseases, prescribe medications, order and interpret diagnostic tests, refer patients to specialists as required, and sometimes even assistance during surgeries. In most states, a PA can’t work on his/her own. Although these assistants are trained in a lot of medical fields with great knowledge, only physician assistant professionals are trained enough and qualified enough to run their practice individually, regardless of the state. However, all of these things might change as laws change – it’s best to keep your eyes on the current legal regulations.
To become a physician assistant, you need to professionally handle various important tasks such as checking the patient’s physical condition, learning and getting information about the patient’s medical history, then compiling and analyzing the information gathered to see the progress during the prescribed treatment period. All of these things are to be kept in history for reference. Other than that, a physician assistant must also be aware of the procedures to administer and carry out diagnostic tests such as handling X-ray machines, electrocardiogram and laboratory tests, and then analyzing the results of diagnostic tests to find all possible causes of the presented symptoms and medical conditions.
The best-to-know reality about physician assistant jobs is that in 2015, such professionals are really in need. Across the United States, people are getting to pay more attention to their health (which was not too frequent decades ago – most people just wouldn’t care). Caring more about your own health involves that you need specialists to go to. Thus, it’s easy to understand: as a physician assistant, your career is almost guaranteed to be a successful one. All of what you need to make sure of are the following things:
- You love being a physician assistant
- The physician assistant jobs in your area are great and if not, then you are willing to move to another city or state for a better position
- The physician assistant salary provided makes you happy (well, this is an easy one, we can’t really say we’re not happy of yearly wages which might even jump above $130.000)
Although professional analysts have indicated a 40% raise in physician assistant jobs available, we can clearly conclude that in the near future we might even see a doubling or tripling amount of jobs available in this field. It all depends on what people are looking forward to (and health is getting to be a number-one-priority for a lot of people) and how soon you decide to be involved in such a rewarding career!
Jobs are always available online and you can even ask your friends if they know some positions available for you (or even your doctor). As a professional, you just have to be certified at an accredited institute.
Physician Assistant Salary
Known as a physician assistant or as the doctor’s right hand, this is one of the professional jobs in the health organizations across the world. They practice medicine under the direction of physicians and surgeons. To become a physician assistant, one must undergo special medical courses and attend a number of tests before being selected as eligible to fulfill such a position. Every assistant will work in hospitals, clinics, pharmacies or other healthcare settings. They are formally trained to examine patients, diagnose injuries and illnesses, and provide treatments.
As mentioned before, the physician assistant is one of the professional medical jobs available, so these specialists’ efforts will be compensated with high salaries. As an example, in the United States, the median annual physician assistant salary was $86,000 in 2010, as shown on the Bureau of Labor Statistics website. As a profession is the second fastest growing health specialization and it was expected to grow by 40% in the next years. The increase of job openings for physician assistants is accompanied by an increase in the physician Assistant salary as well. Working as PA not only opens the opportunities in the healthcare sector, but it also provides better salaries in comparison with other healthcare jobs. However, the salaries depend on a number of different factors. There are three different factors that make the difference in physician assistant salaries: certification, experience and location.
The first factor that will directly influence a physician assistant salary is certification. A certified physician assistant will earn a higher salary. Even more, without certification, the chances of being hired are close to none. The areas that usually come with the highest salaries are: dermatology, surgery and the cardiovascular sector. The other areas of specialty for the highest salaries of physician assistants are general surgery and other surgical subspecialties.
The second factor is experience. Similarly to other influencing factors, the more experience the physician assistant has, the more the physician assistant salary is. As an example, without experience, the salary is just around $78,000 per year. But as another example, with 10 years of experience, they will get paid $110,000 per year or even more.
The third and the last factor is the location. For physician assistants who work in urban areas, the salaries are higher than the salaries of the physician assistants who work in rural areas. Another thing is that the physician assistant salary will also depend on the city. Don’t expect El Paso to pay as much as Brooklyn!
Physician assistants might be allowed to work without the supervision of a doctor or physician in some states while in other states such independence is not allowed and they must be kept under supervision to be allowed to work. Considering statistics, let’s analyze physician assistant salaries. Based on the 2012 compensation survey by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA), the physician assistants specializing in emergencies earn the highest salaries, representing an incredible $132,000 as their average annual income. The lowest salaries come for the assistant who specialize in OB/Gyn, Neurology, and Gastroenterology. Their annual average salaries are as low as $88,000 per year.