Overview and Key Facts
Jobs in 2031
What Do They Do?A physicians assistant could...
Overview Listen to this sectionWould you like to sew up a bad cut after fall? Order and interpret X-rays? Help with surgery? Conduct physicals? Prescribe medications? Physician assistants have many of the same duties as physicians, only they practice medicine under the supervision of a physician or a surgeon. In rural or inner-city areas, physician assistants might have considerable independence, since they might be the only healthcare provider available to these communities. Physician assistants can choose to study specialties, too, just like physicians, and work in surgery, pediatrics, emergency medicine, orthopedics, or other health specialties.
Do You Have the Skills and Characteristics of a Physician Assistant?
- Active Listening: ? Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Speaking: ? Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Reading Comprehension: ? Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Critical Thinking: ? Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Service Orientation: ? Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Social Perceptiveness: ? Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Judgment and Decision Making: ? Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Complex Problem Solving: ? Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Monitoring: ? Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Writing: ? Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Core TasksThink about if you'd like the typical tasks a Physician Assistant might do:
- Examine patients to obtain information about their physical condition.
- Make tentative diagnoses and decisions about management and treatment of patients.
- Prescribe therapy or medication with physician approval.
- Administer or order diagnostic tests, such as x-ray, electrocardiogram, and laboratory tests.
- Interpret diagnostic test results for deviations from normal.
- Obtain, compile, and record patient medical data, including health history, progress notes and results of physical examination.
- Instruct and counsel patients about prescribed therapeutic regimens, normal growth and development, family planning, emotional problems of daily living, and health maintenance.
- Visit and observe patients on hospital rounds or house calls, updating charts, ordering therapy, and reporting back to physician.
- Provide physicians with assistance during surgery or complicated medical procedures.
- Perform therapeutic procedures, such as injections, immunizations, suturing and wound care, and infection management.
- Supervise and coordinate activities of technicians and technical assistants.
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