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South University: Physician Assistant Studies

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Master of Science in Physician Assistant

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Are you looking for physician assistant degree programs in Tampa, Florida? The South University, Tampa Master of Science in Physician Assistant degree program was founded to prepare students to help meet the growing health care needs* of patients throughout the United States.

The curriculum for the Tampa PA program was developed to prepare graduates who reflect the standards of professional practice and conduct. It offers fundamental medical concepts and theories, and provides students with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to function, with physician supervision, as medical professionals who will serve as valued members of the health care team.

The South University, Tampa Physician Assistant Program is a nine-quarter (27 month) primary care physician assistant educational program. The didactic component is five quarters in length and the clinical component is four quarters in length. The curriculum sequence builds upon a firm foundation of basic sciences, together with a wide variety of clinical medicine coursework. All coursework is designed to prepare students for sound, ethical, clinical decision-making and to provide diagnostic, therapeutic, preventive, and health maintenance services. In each quarter of the didactic component, there is a progressive mixture of basic science, research application, applied behavioral science, didactic clinical instruction, and applied learning experiences.

Applied learning experiences will be located at a variety of clinical sites to provide a link between classroom instruction and clinical experiences to enhance learning. Problem solving and case study techniques will be used extensively throughout the entire program in order to provide students with the clinical knowledge and skills they need to practice as competent physician assistants. The role of the physician assistant is consistently reiterated in that it demands intelligence, sound judgment, intellectual honesty, appropriate interpersonal skills, and the capacity to react to emergencies in a calm and reasonable manner. An attitude of respect for others and self, adherence to the concepts of privilege and confidentiality in communicating with patients, and a commitment to the patient’s welfare are also stressed in the program as essential attributes of the physician assistant profession.

The clinical phase is 12 months in length. Eight five-week clinical rotations are conducted at a variety of clinical sites. Five weeks of the clinical rotation are spent on site, and one week is spent on campus for exams, lectures, board preparation, and course work. The rotation specialties include Emergency Medicine, Primary Care, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Behavioral Medicine, Women's Health, and an elective of the student’s choice. Sites selected for clinical rotations include ambulatory, emergency, inpatient, and long-term care settings in public facilities, private practices, and teaching institutions.

Physician assistants perform medical functions that include, but are not limited to: evaluation, monitoring, diagnostics, therapeutics, counseling, and referral. The scope of the practice varies according to respective state laws, the medical setting, and the training of the PA. In many states, PAs can prescribe and/or dispense medicine.

The Master of Science in Physician Assistant program at South University, Tampa in Tampa, Florida, provides students with effective learning opportunities that can prepare them to perform their expected competencies in an ethical, legal, safe and effective manner upon graduation.

* http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/physician-assistants.htm

http://www.southuniversity.edu/tampa/areas-of-study/physician-assistant/physician-assistant-master-of-science-ms
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