ChillerK

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Hey all,

I am interested in what everyone here thinks about being a PA, or, if you are an MD or DO, what you think about working with PA's. What do you think the advantages of being a PA are over being an MD or DO?

Any PA's out there that wish they had gone to med school instead? Why?

Any DO's or MD's out there that wish they had been a PA instead? Why?

Thanks!

Chilly
 

WanabeDR

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Any DO's or MD's out there that wish they had been a PA instead?
:D :D :D :D
 
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PimplePopperMD

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I'm very glad that I didn't go into PA. It's just not for me.

You will find, i suspect, more PAs who wish they had gone MD/DO than the reverse, as they'll say "it's just a year difference in schooling". (residency, of course, is markedly different!) But this shouldn't matter for your decision-making. Shadowing at least a couple of PAs should help. I say at least a couple because there seems to be much variation in the ways in which PAs practice. IE.. surgery vs. EM vs. FP, and their respective levels of autonomy (which is going to vary quite widely)

PA school is like mini-med school, and you have to decide whether you'll be happy with that, or if you want the non-mini-med school experience. both are equally valid, and important to the practice of good medicine. Just recognize that, unlike your pre-med multiple choice questions, there is NO ONE CORRECT ANSWER.

I know many would rather hear that "PAs suck" or that "MD/DO does the same thing as PAs but have to train seven additional years!" but neither is true. sorry!
 

lotchki6

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I agree with the above poster to an extent. There is no real answer to whether it is "better" to be a PA or MD. I do know physicians that have said they would have much rather become a PA for the "better" life style and still have the opportunity to practice medicine. I have also heard of PAs wanting to become doctors for various reasons --money, autonomy, the "letters", etc.
As far as PA school being a mini-med school..I think students and PAs will agree with me that this is FAR FROM THE TRUTH. The common misconception is that PA students go into PA school to "take the easy way out" or because they couldnt handle "real med school". If anything, from my experience, this is opposite from the truth. PA school covers the same core material that med school covers, in much of the same detail..in that we are given the same tools as a med student. The main difference is that we are expected to cover it quicker and with less breaks.
I am in no way trying to initiate another PA school-Med School. Just trying to portray things from a first hand impression.
Make no mistake....when a PA student graduates, he/she is in no way a physician. However, they have been provided with many of the same tools that a new physician has received. There is a distict difference between the professions, and one should not be confused for the other. However a PA is not a "mini-doc" just the same as a PA student is not a "mini-med student".
I apologize if I seem defensive, for this is not my goal.

Sincerely,
Mike S
 

tidy_kiwi

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I think that I have asked this before - WHAT EXACTLY IS THE DIFFERENCE???

PLease no spouting off pros/cons of PA/MD/DO/RN/NP or whatever, I don't need to hear "super-PA working for lousy supervising physician" or the "inadequately trained MD-wannabes endangering patient safety by thinking that they are our equals" stories.

Just 2 or 3 lines explaining the exact differences between PA and MD.
Is it merely the scope of practice?

Thanks
:mad:
 

lotchki6

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PAs practice medicine with the supervision of a licensed physician..i.e. In most states a physician must be available for PA consult either in person or through some sort of telecommunication. For further explanation see www.aapa.org.

Mike
 
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