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So I am currently a medical technologist generalist. I do pretty much everything in our hospital's main clinical lab: chemistry, rapid serology, blood banking, micro planting, urinalysis, coagulation and hematology. I do not do phlebotomy and I have no direct patient care in my job. I have been working here for 7 months (started 2 days after undergrad graduation), and I plan to stay here until the spring to make it a full year before I look for a job doing direct patient care. I have my EMT cert and some volunteer experience. My question is, considering that soon I'll have 2,000 hours of HCE, how many hours of direct patient care should I accumulate before I apply to PA schools/when should I apply? Other info: Studying for the GRE now to take it in December (Tips would be appreciated! Math is my trouble area.) 3.9 GPA Shadowed 3 different PAs for a total of roughly 30 hours, continuing to shadow.
Right now I am working as a scribe but I can't afford to live in Dallas on scribe wages so I am getting ready to move home. I'm having a hard time finding a scribe job in my hometown.... I am trained as a MLT (Lab person) and this includes phlebotomy, which pays better than scribe but less contact with Drs and staff. I ran into a Dr. that I used to shadow who told me that her office needs an MA. Same thing, makes more than a scribe but it seems like they don't get the same type of experience out of the patient encounters as the scribes do.... Lastly, I was offered a job as a Clinical Allergy Specialist, which means that I would be performing allergy tests (skin tests) directly on the patients, interpreting the results and explaining them to the patients, and also lots of office work including dealing with insurance companies. This seems like the most well-rounded experience, but I'm afraid the schools won't know what it is, which means that I would have to rely on the right essay questions being asked where I could include information about that job. I don't want to waste a year doing something that's not gonna help me get in. Any thoughts?