Career and Education Opportunities for Physician Assistants in Vancouver, Washington
Physician assistant career and educational opportunities abound in Vancouver, Washington. There are currently 1,760 jobs for physician assistants in Washington and this is projected to grow by 21% to about 2,130 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for physician assistants, which sees this job pool growing by about 39.0% over the next eight years. Physician assistants generally provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician.
A person working as a physician assistant can expect to earn about $42 per hour or $89,010 yearly on average in Washington and about $39 per hour or $81,230 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Compared with people working in the overall category of Nursing, people working as physician assistants in Washington earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Nursing nationally. Physician assistants work in a variety of jobs, including: obstetrics and gynecology physician assistant, orthopaedic physician assistant, and cardiovascular physician assistant.
There are forty-eight schools of higher education in the Vancouver area, including one within twenty-five miles of Vancouver where you can get a degree to start your career as a physician assistant. Given that the most common education level for physician assistants is a Master's degree, you can expect to spend about six years studying to be a physician assistant if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years if you have a Bachelor's degree.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Physician Assistant
In general, physician assistants provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. They also conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients.
Physician assistants examine patients to obtain data related to their physical condition. They also interpret diagnostic test results for deviations from normal. Equally important, physician assistants have to obtain, compile and record patient medical data, including health history, progress notes and results of physical examination. They are often called upon to make tentative diagnoses and decisions about management and treatment of patients. They are expected to prescribe therapy or medication with physician approval. Finally, physician assistants visit and observe patients on hospital rounds or house calls, updating charts, ordering therapy, and reporting back to physicians.
Every day, physician assistants are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to evaluate problems as they arise. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.
It is important for physician assistants to supervise and direct efforts of technicians and technical assistants. They are often called upon to furnish physicians with assistance during surgery or complicated medical procedures. They also order medical and laboratory supplies and apparatus. Somewhat less frequently, physician assistants are also expected to administer or order diagnostic tests, such as x-ray and laboratory tests.
Physician assistants sometimes are asked to perform therapeutic procedures, such as injections, immunizations, suturing and wound care, and infection management. They also have to be able to visit and observe patients on hospital rounds or house calls, updating charts, ordering therapy, and reporting back to physicians and instruct and counsel patients about prescribed therapeutic regimens, normal growth and development, family planning, emotional problems of daily living, and health maintenance. And finally, they sometimes have to supervise and direct efforts of technicians and technical assistants.
Like many other jobs, physician assistants must be reliable and have exceptional integrity.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Vancouver include:
- Chiropractor. Adjust spinal column and other articulations of the body to correct abnormalities of the human body believed to be caused by interference with the nervous system. Examine patient to determine nature and extent of disorder. Manipulate spine or other involved area. May utilize supplementary measures, such as exercise, rest, and nutritional therapy.
- Licensed Practical Nurse. Care for ill, injured, or disabled persons in hospitals, nursing homes, and similar institutions. May work under the supervision of a registered nurse. Licensing required.
- Nurse Practitioner. Provide advanced nursing care and treatment to patients. Perform physical examinations, order diagnostic tests, develop treatment plans and prescribe drugs or other therapies.
- Optometrist. Diagnose, manage, and treat conditions and diseases of the human eye and visual system. Examine eyes and visual system, diagnose problems or impairments, prescribe corrective lenses, and provide treatment. May prescribe therapeutic drugs to treat specific eye conditions.
- Registered Nurse. Assess patient health problems and needs, develop and implement nursing care plans, and maintain medical records. Administer nursing care to ill, injured, or disabled patients. May advise patients on health maintenance and disease prevention or provide case management. Licensing or registration required. Includes advance practice nurses such as: nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified nurse midwives, and certified registered nurse anesthetists. Advanced practice nursing is practiced by RNs who have specialized formal, post-basic education and who function in highly autonomous and specialized roles.
- Respiratory Therapist. Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, and operate equipment.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Physician Assistant Training
Pacific University - Forest Grove, OR
Pacific University, 2043 College Way, Forest Grove, OR 97116. Pacific University is a small university located in Forest Grove, Oregon. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,135 students and an admission rate of 78%. Pacific University has a master's degree program in Physician Assistant which graduated thirty-nine students in 2008.
Certification in Sports Medicine: The ABP in collaboration with the American Boards of Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, and Emergency Medicine offers a certificate of added qualifications in sports medicine.
For more information, see the American Board of Pediatrics website.
Certified Health Fitness Specialist: The ACSM Certified Health Fitness Specialist (HFS) is a degreed health and fitness professional qualified to pursue a career in university, corporate, commercial, hospital, and community settings.
For more information, see the American College of Sports Medicine website.
Certified Clinical Exercise Specialist: Becoming ACSM Certified as an Exercise Specialistsays a lot about you.
For more information, see the American College of Sports Medicine website.
Certified Flexible Endoscope Reprocessor: The CBSPD is committed to the certification of healthcare sterile processing and distribution personnel regardless of their workplace setting.
For more information, see the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution website.
International Board Certified Lactation Consultant: An IBCLE or International Board Certified Lactation Consultant is a specialist that has taken and.
For more information, see the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners website.
LDT's Lymphedema/CDP Certification - Level I: Lymphedema/CDP Certification - Level I (LLCC) completes the Lymphedema Certification process, which is designed to build awareness of lymphedema and ensure the quality of practitioners who provide manual lymphatic therapy and CDP.
For more information, see the Upledger Institute, Inc. website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Vancouver, Washington
Vancouver is located in Clark County, Washington. It has a population of over 163,186, which has grown by 13.7% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Vancouver, 98, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Vancouver are priced at $95,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred eighty new homes were built in Vancouver, down from four hundred twenty the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Vancouver are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, computer and electronic products, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 21.7% of Vancouver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Vancouver is 7.8%, which is less than Washington's average of 8.7%.
The percentage of Vancouver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 27.9%, is less than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Vancouver is home to the Vancouver Square and the Vancouver Plaza as well as Leverich Park and Wintler Park. Shopping malls in the area include Arbours Shopping Center, Millport Shopping Center and Vancouver Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Vancouver can choose from Comfort Suites Vancouver, Homewood Suites Portland-Vancouver and Best Western Hotel and Suites Vacouver Mall Dr for temporary stays in the area.