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a health care professional who is able to perform certain of a physician's duties, serving in either of two roles: assistant to the primary care physician (PA) or surgeon assistant
(SA). The PA possesses the knowledge and skill to perform history taking, physical examination, drawing of blood samples, urinalysis, electrocardiographic examination, and routine therapeutic procedures, such as injections, immunizations, and suturing of wounds, all under the supervision of a physician. Graduates of accredited physician assistant programs who successfully complete the National Certifying Examination for Primary Care Physician Assistants are designated PA-C, Physician Assistant–Certified. The address of the American Academy of Physician Assistants is 950 N. Washington Ave., Alexandria, VA 22314.
phy·si·cian as·sis·tant (P.A., PA), (fi-zish'ŭn a-sis'tănt),
A person who is trained, certified, and licensed to perform history taking, physical examination, diagnosis, and treatment of commonly encountered medical problems, and certain technical skills, under the supervision of a licensed physician, and who thereby extends the physician's capacity to provide medical care. Many subspecialties exist (for example, orthopedist's assistant, sports injury assistant, pediatrician's assistant).
n. Abbr. PA
A person trained to provide a variety of medical services, usually under the supervision of a physician.
physician assistant (PA)
a person academically and clinically prepared to practice medicine under the supervision of a licensed doctor of medicine or osteopathy. Within the physician/PA relationship, PAs exercise autonomy in medical decisions and provide a wide range of diagnostic and therapeutic services. Training programs average 25 to 27 months. National certification is available to graduates of approved training programs, a master's degree level in most states.
physician assistant PA Medtalk A person qualified to perform various physician-supervised medical tasks–eg, taking Pt Hx, performing physical exams and autopsies Education 2 yrs beyond college or university. See Pathologists' assistant, Physician extender.
phy·si·cian as·sis·tant (fi-zish'ŭn ă-sis'tănt)
Someone certified to provide basic medical services under the supervision of a licensed medical physician.
phy·si·cian as·sis·tant (PA) (fi-zish'ŭn ă-sis'tănt)
One trained, certified, and licensed to perform history taking, physical examination, diagnosis, and treatment of commonly encountered medical problems, and some technical skills, under the supervision of a licensed physician, and who thereby extends the physician's capacity to provide medical care.
Patient discussion about physician assistant
Q. What is a physician assistant? What are the differences betwwen it and MD? My son want to be a doctor (MD). I think it might be to hard for him. I know that there is something called physician assistant can someone elaborate more about this profession?
A. physician assistant are just like full doctors except they need a MD to sign some of the forms they have.More discussions about physician assistant
You can see more about the academic program here