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Aunt Val

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About Aunt Val

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    Physician Assistant

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  1. If you’re willing to do something non medical for a few months, substitute teaching can be a good gig. School systems are usually desperate for subs, and it’s a job with a lot of flexibility. You can choose the days you want to work and turn down any opportunities that you don’t want. The pay is decent, too, for a temp job.
  2. @rubytuesdai You're not alone. I graduated this summer too and have yet to find a PA job. I've applied to a ton of positions in the nearby city, passed out resumes in person to medical offices in my more rural county, and applied to an out-of-state residency, all with no success. In the meantime I started substitute teaching, which lasted a month until schools in my area went back to online instruction and didn't need subs anymore, and I just started working a seasonal job with a shipping company to help ends meet. School loans are coming due soon--I guess I'll see if I can defer for a wh
  3. You're good. I've been busy the last couple days with my unfortunately-non-PA temp job. So my first observations on the EKG apparently weren't quite right. I'm enjoying looking over other people's discussion though. Not sure what else to offer at this point besides comparing past EKGs and maybe getting a repeat.
  4. Let me try out my EKG reading skills . . . Rate: approx. 84 bpm Rhythm: irregularly irregular Axis: normal P waves are present before each QRS. QRS is narrow. T waves are present and not peaked. Normal R wave progression over precordial leads. I originally wanted to say A-fib, but it can't be because there are P waves. Calf pain could be related to possible DVT (although less likely if it's bilateral) or bad peripheral circulation. Left flank pain--kidney?? So I have some basic observations but am not sure how to put all this together. Please correct me a
  5. You'd have to ask some more questions specifically to your program/faculty to get an accurate answer. I don't know how other schools work, but at mine I think the only thing that mattered is that you had to have a 3.0 or above to start clinical year. Rotation sites were allotted by availability, not GPA. If you've got a 3.5 GPA, relax! You're doing great. Don't get down on yourself because of some B's.
  6. I'd say I learned most on my internal medicine rotations because my preceptor let me do all kinds of stuff and talked over patient cases with me. I do wish I had been able to get a hospitalist rotation, as I think that also would have been very useful.
  7. I'm in the process of applying for jobs, and I just got a rejection email from a health center basically because I'm a PA and not an NP. The position would be pretty much my dream job, working in underserved areas of my city, including with refugees. The website only advertised NP openings, but I thought I'd try anyway. However, I "do not meet the minimum requirements for the position," according to the rejection email. Sigh. I'm disappointed.
  8. I was a phlebotomist for 3 years before PA school, and it was a great job for me. I worked in a small hospital with inpatient, outpatient, and emergency room duties. Learned a whole lot about care in different areas of the hospital and about various lab tests, which did come in handy for school. If you decide to go this route make sure that you attend a high quality training program or can be well-trained on the job. There are a lot of sketchy phlebotomy courses out there. You can't learn to be a good phlebotomist in a day or two, no matter what some people claim.
  9. I would advise just keeping a spreadsheet or some kind of document on your computer to keep track of volunteer hours so that you can give an accurate number. CASPA doesn't ask for proof of those that I remember. Your volunteer supervisor should be able to sign a sheet with your hours on it that you can file away just in case. For PCE, if you're employed somewhere and getting paid, your pay stub will have the number of hours on it that you worked for that pay period. Keep track of those hours and file away the receipts (either paper or digital). Same as above, I don't think CASPA ever
  10. My school bought this course for all the students in my class in order to help us as we were out of in-person school so long due to COVID. It was a 4-day online seminar, something like 9am-4pm daily. You could purchase the notes for an additional $45 if you wanted to, which I did. They come mailed to your house in a big organized binder. Everything about the course is organized and punctual. Imagine all the main information of your entire PA school career packed into 4 long days. That's basically what the course was. Your experience with the course will depend on your attention span
  11. I would advise sending an actual paper thank you card. It's more personal. And you don't have to worry about a subject line. Mail it to the school's PA office. If the person has a PhD, address him/her as "Dr." If not, just address as "Mr." or "Ms." Say thank you for the opportunity to interview, express enthusiasm for the school, and maybe mention something specific you talked about in the interview that would make you stand out.
  12. Hi, lwilker, Get a BSN if you want to be a nurse, not as a PA backup plan. If you want to be a PA, you can major in anything you want, as long as you take the PA prerequisite courses at some point during undergrad. Check PA school websites to see their prereq requirements; most schools are basically the same. A biology or other science degree would help you get them all in, but you don't have to major in the sciences at all. I didn't (I went back as a post-bacc student after a break from school to get my requirements in). As far as getting in healthcare hours, consider becoming
  13. I have a copy of The Ultimate Guide to Getting Into Physician Assistant School by Andrew J. Rodican that I would like to give away. Note that this is the third edition, copyright 2011. The PA program and tuition sections are outdated, but I think the rest of the book would still be helpful to applicants and those thinking about the PA profession. It was useful for me as an applicant. There is some highlighting throughout the book. If you're interested, please PM me your name and mailing address. I'll try to get it mailed out within a week or so. First come, first served. I will post a
  14. I just want to say thanks to the moderators for allowing this discussion to stay up, even though it has strayed from its original topic of "Insurance Discussion." And thanks to the contributors for keeping things relatively civil. This is an important subject for those of us interested in medical ethics, but it's hard to find solid scientific studies and evidence. Glad we can share information here. I'm following with interest.
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