BRAVE NEW WORLD
The healthcare industry is changing dramatically. The model that has worked for the past several decades, particularly for primary care, will not be sufficient in the decades to come. The growing baby boomer population, and the predicted shortage of primary care physicians (PCPs) are driving a seismic shift in the way patients will receive their primary care in the future. We’ve talked a lot about the role nurse practitioners will play in this brave new healthcare world, but there is another profession on the frontline also ready to take a bigger role: physician assistants (PAs).
IN WITH THE NEW
Interestingly, PAs are a relatively new healthcare specialty. The profession began in the 1960s when healthcare demand was increasing but physicians were in short supply (sounds familiar). Military medics returning from duty had field training but little clinical training and no credentials. The PA role was created to capitalize on their skill sets, and get them up and running quickly. Even today, becoming a PA is often the next career step for first responders such as retired police officers, EMTs, and firefighters.
Even with such a short history the PA future is bright. Really bright - the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the profession will grow by 37% by 2026, making it the fastest growing healthcare profession (even outpacing advanced practice nurse practitioners). This is impressive for a healthcare profession that didn’t exist fifty years ago, but not surprising - PA is a very satisfying role. Most practice under the supervision of a physician, but only need a master’s degree, and can examine, diagnose, treat, and prescribe medication. PAs work in every setting from private offices to outreach clinics and, as of 2017, enjoy a median salary of over $100,000 per year.
LEAVE YOUR MARK
Most PAs work full time, but there are other options. In fact, LeaderStat Locums specializes in temporary placement of PAs all over the country. We place interim healthcare professionals of all types who enjoy lots of benefits, such as the freedom to set their own schedules, balance work and family life, travel, expand their skill sets, and make new professional connections (all while earning great pay). Our Locum Tenens division makes all arrangements, including making the placement, arranging travel, and coordinating health insurance. We find that PAs of all ages and stages are embracing the interim lifestyle.
Interested in putting your PA skills to work while you travel and set your own schedule? Of course you are – it sounds great! Give our recruiters a call to discuss: 877-699-STAT.