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SurgPA05

Assistant at surgery: Multiple personnele for one position

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Not to mention that we have didactic training in addition to our clinical training. We are also trained in the peri-operative management of surgical conditions along with our surgical didactics. I appreciate your reasoning for being here and you are certainly welcome. But why come in here and insult us right off the bat when you dont even know what the normal PA school experience is like. To do as monica has I will sum up my school's surgery exposure.

 

one semester class on techiniques and procedures. This inculdes various procedures, a few non surgical but some are (e.g-suturing).

another semester class on only surgery, inculding perioperative managament and first assisting.

4 wks of required surgery rotation with require OR/assisting time.

then I have a total of 12 wks of elective rotations that could be spent entirely in a surgery externship.

Then lets say I chose to do the Johns Hopkins PA surgical residency that is 18 months long on top of the two semester of training in procedures and first assisting and the possible 16 weeks of rotations in surgery.

 

That prepares me pretty well to first assist and manage patients perioperatively, at least I think so.

 

I am curious though, (not trying to be a jerk) other than RNFA, are than any organized post graduate training programs for NPs to learn surgery?

 

chris

 

p.s. i hope this didnt come off the wrong way, im not trying to be a jerk either but i want to make a point as to WHY there are so many more PAs in your field.

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No disrespect but if you think the 1 or so months of surgery rotation in school you receive qualifies you anymore than I than we could have a long discussion about this. Just like any new PA coming out of school when I graduated NP school I was fortunate to find a surgeon willing to train me and the rest is history. I had 8 years of experience in a combat support hospital and a surgical rotation as well in school. It really varies from person to person and their aptitude in surviving OR life.

 

TD

 

Not sure who you are responding to here,but I was a certified surgical tech for 3 years a certified surgical first assistant for 3 years and graduated from one of only three surgically focused PA programs with multiple didactic and lab courses specifically for surgical care of patients, surgical techniques and with 5 surgical rotations in general, ortho, CV, neuro and GYN..so I think I'm probably pretty qualified......In fact I don't think anyone questioned your training....and I have been quoted on this forum as saying that once the gloves and gown go on it doesn't matter what initials anyone has behind their name....if they have the technical skill and knowledge of surgical anatomy and physiology then that's all that matters...the only thing IMO that sets the practitioners apart is what they are trained and qualified to do outside the OR.....I have seen surgical techs harvest saphenous vein and close sternotomies and perform their side of a hysterectomy as adeptly as any surgeon and I have seen PAs be nothing more than a retractor holder and suture cutter and even do that badly.....so you have no quarrel with me with regard to who is qualified to do what. This thread is not going to turn into another NP vs PA thread I won't let it...in fact I think its interesting that there is an NP in surgery here that is willing to chat things up....so more power to ya.

 

So no more on the who is more qualified to first assist stuff...instead we should focus on the issue that really holds back surgical PAs ( and NPs) in terms of professional development, which is not being paid what we're worth by not education ourselves and our SPs and billing personnel on how to correctly bill and collect for our services in a way that we directly see the fruits of our labor.....we need to stop lining the pockets of our docs and start collecting what we bring in to the the practice. that's all I have to say about that.

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Does anyone have a suggestion in regards to getting a secondary credential that is not PA or NP related for First Assisting. What is the most credible program and organization? I have been looking at the ABSA. Being an NP I could always proceed with an RNFA program but I want something more medically oriented.

 

Thanks

 

TD

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Does anyone have a suggestion in regards to getting a secondary credential that is not PA or NP related for First Assisting. What is the most credible program and organization? I have been looking at the ABSA. Being an NP I could always proceed with an RNFA program but I want something more medically oriented.

 

Thanks

 

TD

 

Most of them are scams. We looked at them in Colorado when credentialling first popped up. They all quickly added PA to the list of people who are eligible to take their exam. Most are a one week "class for $2000+ and then their test for even more. If you just need a pretty piece of paper for the hospital then get the RNFA.

 

David Carpenter, PA-C

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I personally would like to keep all other types of assistants out of the OR except PAs and NPs. I say that if you cant "legally" round on the patients you have assisted in surgery on you should not be allowed to assist. Of course this is mostly just me being selfish and wanting all the assisting services to ourselves but it does make sense in a way in being able to care for a patient from start to finish and not just in the OR like an RNFA, SA, ST, ect.

 

Why do you folks think Medicare continues to hold all other assistants at bay in regards to reimbursement and only allows PAs, NPs, and MDs to bill the assist fee?

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Well-if they were going to allow them to bill-they would have to go through the process of being issued PINs, etc-would they not? I am not certain what the real reason CMS has its stance is...

 

I do think that is a good selling point for PAs and NPs as surgical assistants-the ability to break to go see that ER consult or take care of the emergency on the ward and to do rounding, etc.

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There are currently three accredited PA schools in the US that are surgically focused.

 

Do you know the three programs focused on surgery?

 

Thanks for all of your help! This sticky is great!

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Oh good. Well, I applied to Cornell, but not UAB. I'm a little worried though because Cornell's website indicates that you need your bachelors before Fall 2008 ...I have ONE more class to take to complete my major which I have to take in the Spring. :( Hope they aren't too strick!

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There are some very legitimate Surgical Assistant programs in the US which require just about the same prerequisites as a PA program and which are two years and do just as much of clinical training as a PA program but in a completely surgical-based curriculum.

 

The program is at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, VA.

 

Here is a link: http://www.evms.edu/health-care/public-health/surgical-assistant.html

Edited by ChaseA17

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There are some very legitimate Surgical Assistant programs in the US which require just about the same prerequisites as a PA program and which are two years and do just as much of clinical training as a PA program but in a completely surgical-based curriculum.

 

The program is at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, VA.

 

Here is a link: http://www.evms.edu/health-care/public-health/surgical-assistant.html

 

If the previous poster would have adequately read through the posts for this thread he/she might have seen that while there are other allied health professionals that might adequately fill the role of surgical assistant, the extent and depth of the medical education of a Physician Assistant and the resultant ability of PA's to practice medicine in all aspects and arenas in and outside the realm of surgery sets them apart from all other allied health practitioners with the possible exception of NPs.

Admittedly the program listed by this poster is one of the most extensive I have seen for a surgical assistant program, however when compared to the clinical and didactic content of any PA program it simply pales in comparison.

It really is akin to comparing physician training and nursing education....not really any contest to be had.

 

http://medicine.yale.edu/pa/curriculum/didactic/schedule.aspx

 

I have said it once I will say it again; that while although there are others who might receive training to fill the role of assistant at surgery, there is simply no other practitioner who matches the depth of education and training and resultant scope of practice than that of a PA. Even more to the point is the aspect of PA post-graduate residencies which far and away places the residency trained PA so far ahead of any other non-physician practitioner in any area of practice as to be comical to even try to compare.

 

http://surgery.duke.edu/wysiwyg/downloads/Educational_Goals.pdf

 

To quote one of my favorite movies..."Those are the facts of the case and they are undisputed."

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