Physician Assistant Schools in - Pennsylvania PA
By an allied health world contributing writer
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Between 1999 and 2007, the number of physician assistants in Pennsylvania increased by 25% to 3,210. This growth can be partly attributed to a greater need of health care professionals in the inner city areas of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. The average annual salary for PAs in Pennsylvania has also increased by about 35% in the past ten years. PAs can have a long and rewarding career helping patients that may not always be able to see a full physician or doctor. However, to become a PA, people must have dedication and patience in order to complete the lengthy process of becoming fully educated and licensed.
- Achieve high grades in high school science classes, such as chemistry, biology, anatomy, and physiology. Taking a part time job at a clinic or a hospital as a lab assistant may help students generate contacts with physicians, who will be essential to their clinical training in college.
- After high school, prospective physician assistants should enroll at a college or university and complete a four-year bachelor’s degree to be eligible to enroll in physician assistant schools in Pennsylvania. The major area of study should be germane to the medical field. Majors such as Biology or Pharmacy are usually recommended. During college, it may also be helpful to work part time in the medical field in some capacity. Paramedics and registered nurses usually decide to continue their educations and enroll in physician assistant schools in Pennsylvania.
- Degrees for physician assistant studies are usually two-year master’s degrees. Graduate courses in biochemistry, pathology, medicine, and physical diagnosis usually make up the bulk of the course work. A clinical training period under a practicing physician is usually part of a degree in PA studies. Sometimes, the physician training the prospective PA will later hire him/her full time after all education and licensure requirements have been met. There is a myriad of colleges and universities in Pennsylvania that offer degrees for PAs. There are several schools in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Glenside, Center Valley, Erie, Wilkes-Barre, Lock Haven, Scranton, Williamsport, Loretto, and Greensburg