New graduates celebrate with their families at their nursing commencement ceremony.
How to Become a Physician Assistant in New Jersey and Physician Assistant Programs in New Jersey
The physician assistant is a relatively modern phenomenon. The role of the PA developed to fill in the need for primary care providers. A PA works with the supervision of a medical doctor. Many patients have not dealt with a PA until they visit one at their doctor's office. The PA often handles those short notice calls when patients need to see the doctor but the doctor may be booked for the day. Despite the title of physician assistant, those that go into this profession are not over-titled nurses or administrative assistants. This role requires specialized training and licensing. The PA works mostly on his or her own. However, up to 10% of their cases must be reviewed by a doctor. Also, the doctor may require certain items for certain patients. Learn more on how to become a physician assistant in New Jersey.
The state of New Jersey has strict requirements on those who work as a physician assistant. All who want to work in this position must hold a license. To get that license, the PA must complete an extensive licensing process. It is one of the more stringent ones in the country. Basically, the PA needs to complete a background check, have a certified degree, and complete a nationally recognized PA exam. The Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam given by the National Committee on Physician Assistants is the most recognized exam. This exam requires applicants to first complete an accredited education program certified by either the American Medical Association Committee on Allied Health Education and Accreditation, or the Commission for Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs.
There are several accredited physician assistant programs in New Jersey. One good example is the program offered at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. This program offers a masters level degree as a physician's assistant. Most applicants already hold a bachelors degree, though the program can also accommodate students who have not completed one yet. Students take classes in anatomy, microbiology, biochemistry, pathology, psychiatry, nutrition, orthopedics, cardiology, and other medical related topics. In addition to class work, PA students must spend a great deal of time in the clinics learning how to handle various patients in different settings.
Typically, students attack their studies in two rough stages. The first is where they get most of their class work out of the way. The second is where they do clinical rotations in departments like ambulatory care, inpatient care, surgery, obstetrics, pediatrics, emergency medicine, and psychiatry. This combination helps to train the student in what is going to happen once they graduate and get a job.
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New Jersey Board of Nursing
P.O. Box 45010
124 Halsey Street, 6th Floor
Newark, NJ 07101
Phone: (973) 504-6586
Fax: (973) 648-3481
New Jersey State Nurses Association