Physician Assistants

Provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. Conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients. May, in some cases, prescribe medication. Must graduate from an accredited educational program for physician assistants.

Median Annual Wage: $95,820

Education: Master's degree (50%); Bachelor's degree (30%); Professional degree (15%)

Projected Growth: Much faster than average (22% or higher)

Related Job Titles: Physician Assistant Certified (PAC); Physician's Assistant; Family Practice Physician Assistant; Midlevel Provider; Orthopaedic Physician Assistant; Physician Extender; Certified Physician Assistant (PA-C); Clinical Physician Assistant; General Surgery Physician Assistant; Surgical Physician Assistant

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Physician Assistants.

More Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Careers

  • Make tentative diagnoses and decisions about management and treatment of patients.
  • Prescribe therapy or medication with physician approval.
  • Obtain, compile and record patient medical data, including health history, progress notes and results of physical examination.
  • Interpret diagnostic test results for deviations from normal.
  • Administer or order diagnostic tests, such as x-ray, electrocardiogram, and laboratory tests.
  • Instruct and counsel patients about prescribed therapeutic regimens, normal growth and development, family planning, emotional problems of daily living, and health maintenance.
  • Visit and observe patients on hospital rounds or house calls, updating charts, ordering therapy, and reporting back to physician.
  • Provide physicians with assistance during surgery or complicated medical procedures.
  • Perform therapeutic procedures, such as injections, immunizations, suturing and wound care, and infection management.
  • Supervise and coordinate activities of technicians and technical assistants.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Physician Assistants.

  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Physician Assistants.

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