FAQ

Q&A with a Canadian Emergency Medicine Physician Assistant

2017-08-21T19:48:51+00:00

From Anne: Sahand is a McMaster PA grad graduating from Class of 2013. He served as the McMaster PA Student Association (MPASA) President for his class, and has been an advocate for the PA Profession. He now works in Emergency Medicine at University Hospital Network (UHN)  in Toronto, Ontario.  Sahand teaches at the McMaster PA Program covering Interview Examination and Reasoning Skills (IER). He is also involved in the PA student mentorship program and preceptors

How to become a Canadian Certified Physician Assistant

2017-05-27T22:27:58+00:00

The Canadian Association of Physician Assistants has a wonderful flow chart you can use to help navigate becoming a PA in Canada. I also strongly recommend reviewing each of the PA program websites for the most accurate, up to date information on their admissions process. This is simply a rough guideline. Step 1: Take the pre-requisite courses & fulfill admission criteria  Check the admission requirements for the program and ensure you take the appropriate

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How to shadow a Physician Assistant in Canada

2017-05-19T21:30:07+00:00

I really recommend reading Trust Me, I’m a PA Student’s – Guide to Shadowing a PA to learn how to make the most of these opportunities. Shadowing is a great way: to learn about how PAs practice. the nature of the PA/MD relationship how a PA is incorporated in a certain practice setting (e.g. Family medicine, vs. ER, vs. specialty practice like Plastic Surgery or Nephrology). whether this is a position you'd be interested

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What can I do to strengthen my PA application?

2017-05-10T20:29:20+00:00

In the long term: Work on developing yourself, achieving good grades in school, expanding your experiences both in and outside the classroom and building confidence in various soft skills (communications, leadership, etc.). I expand on this in the answer to #4 (see below). Sandy Vuong, a current McMaster PA student has a few articles on how to make the most of your pre-PA education. In the short term: I truly believe the more informed, and well-researched

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What courses should I take/extra-curriculars to stand out on PA admissions?

2017-05-19T20:39:51+00:00

Usually variations of this question go along the lines of: What courses should I take to get into PA school? What kind of extra-curriculars should I be involved in? Or in essence: “What do I need to do to look like the ideal PA candidate?” These are quite subjective questions to ask, so the answers you get will depend on who you ask. Advice I give here is reflective of a personal opinion, and does not

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Can UK PAs practice in Canada? Can Canadian PAs practice in the UK?

2017-05-10T07:29:32+00:00

Physician Assistants are more commonly known as Physician Associates in the United Kingdom (UK) and work with physicians. Like Canadian and American PAs, Physician Associates have direct patient contact, taking histories, performing physical examinations, ordering and interpreting investigations (such as blood work or imaging), diagnosing medical conditions and initiating treatment plans. They are autonomous, but dependent practitioners, which means they work under the supervising of the supervising physician. They are also trained under the medical model like

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Can US PAs practice in Canada? Can Canadian PAs practice in the US?

2017-05-09T10:03:03+00:00

The short answer is the Canadian trained and certified Physician Assistants cannot practice in the United States. However, American trained and certified Physician Assistants can practice in Canada. Canadian PAs cannot practice in the US At present the American NCCPA has not accredited any PA programs in Canada therefore Canadian PAs cannot write the PA-C certification (PANCE or PANRE) exam for the US. If Canadian PAs were interested in practicing

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Explaining the PA-supervising MD relationship

2017-08-21T19:19:59+00:00

There are various models for what a Physician Assistant and Supervising Physician relationship may look like. The relationship can vary by practice setting (in outpatient, versus in hospital), by PA experience (new grad, versus experienced PA), and by area of medicine (family medicine vs General Surgery). The foundation for a successful PA/MD working relationship requires mutual respect and trust, open communication, and freedom to ask questions and seek guidance for complex cases or issues

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Can an IMG become a Physician Assistant?

2017-05-08T20:20:26+00:00

International Medical Graduates (IMGs) are Physicians who were trained outside of Canada. Apart from acclimating to a different country, different weather, perhaps a different language and different customs, another challenge IMGs face when arriving in Canada is often ensuring English skills (written and oral) are high enough to meet admission requirements for different health care careers, and to find a career that allows IMGs to utilize the skills they have acquired

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How Physician Assistants are different than Doctors

2017-08-15T15:24:11+00:00

This is a question I often get from prospective students who are looking into the PA program, except its framed, "Why did you choose to become a Physician Assistant and not an MD?". It's a good question, but I thought it would be more constructive to discuss the differences between the two professions as well as their similarities. Answers are based on PAs and MDs practicing in Ontario, Canada.

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