Darth Asclepius

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First off, sorry if this is completely ignorant, but I want to know the correct answer and I've asked several other students who don't know. I'm a first year med student. How should I respectfully address a NP or PA? (You know, I call the MD "Dr. X", what do I call the NP or PA?) They know a heck of a lot more than me and some take the time to teach me stuff. I want to treat them with respect. A doctor told me to call the NP by her first name but is that disrespectful? Thanks for any responses.

PS- I'm sure this has been asked, but the search function is down.
 

hospPA

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Darth Asclepius said:
First off, sorry if this is completely ignorant, but I want to know the correct answer and I've asked several other students who don't know. I'm a first year med student. How should I respectfully address a NP or PA? (You know, I call the MD "Dr. X", what do I call the NP or PA?) They know a heck of a lot more than me and some take the time to teach me stuff. I want to treat them with respect. A doctor told me to call the NP by her first name but is that disrespectful? Thanks for any responses.

PS- I'm sure this has been asked, but the search function is down.
I prefer, "Hello Pat". First name is fine. It is absolutely not disrespectful. "Hey you" is disrespectful. :laugh:

Thanks,

Pat
 

emedpa

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if they are older than you I would start with "mr. smith" until they tell you to call them "john".
all the docs I work with call me by my 1st name as do my students. of course I call all the docs by their 1st names too once they tell me that is ok.
places with a strong military tradition just call them pa last name and you can always tell a military pa because they answer the phone that way; "er, pa smith"
 
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Darth Asclepius

Darth Asclepius

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Thanks! :D
 

primadonna22274

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I have to agree with E. Now granted, I'm a West Coaster and we're rather informal. All of my patients call me by my first name, as do the support staff and my colleagues and referring physicians. It works fine. I'm not hung up on titles myself and "PA Lisa" never stuck.
I think it truly is OK to just ask the NP or PA "how would you like me to address you?" Most will probably be puzzled at the question because they've probably never been asked. It's thoughtful that you ask and I'm sure most would appreciate it.
 

niko327

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Until invited to use their first name, I'd refer to them as Mr. XXXX and Ms, XXXX. Better to be a little more formal in the beginning, as it conveys respect. Especially as a student.
 
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Darth Asclepius

Darth Asclepius

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primadonna22274 said:
I think it truly is OK to just ask the NP or PA "how would you like me to address you?" Most will probably be puzzled at the question because they've probably never been asked. It's thoughtful that you ask and I'm sure most would appreciate it.
Thanks for the replies. I guess it's better to go with more formal to start with. I don't suppose I would offend anyone that way. Or even better, I'll just ask. I should have done that to start with but I thought that there must be some sort of standard that I was supposed to know and I didn't want to offend her by asking what to call her (or make myself look like a total idiot :oops: )
 

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Darth Asclepius said:
Thanks for the replies. I guess it's better to go with more formal to start with. I don't suppose I would offend anyone that way. Or even better, I'll just ask. I should have done that to start with but I thought that there must be some sort of standard that I was supposed to know and I didn't want to offend her by asking what to call her (or make myself look like a total idiot :oops: )
When I worked/lived overseas, in several countries, I was intrigued by the customary us of Mr. before my first name. Apparently, it's meant to demonstrate respect with some affection. At first I thought it was a slight.

To respond: Once after a *certain* formal introduction, if I'm addressed by my first name - I use their first name from then on out. If they adhere to stuffy protocol, I follow suit. Simple as that :)
 

Bigvelo

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Typically, other providers call me by my first name. Whenever an other provider is talking with a patient, Mr. so-and-so is appropriate and simply polite and professional. For example: the other day, one of the docs I work with saw me hemming and hawing over some MRI images and he said, "what you got there "Bigvelo" (substituted for first name). We went over things and I ended up going back to see the patient with the doc b/c it was a surgical case. When we went into the room, the doc said, "...well, I think Mr. so-and-so is right on; I agree..." and the dialogue went on, etc...