How is it that sometimes we find our purpose in tragedy. I lost my grandma to diabetes. Diabetes did not take mercy on her. It took her slowly, until there was nothing else to take. It started with her kidneys, they slowly stopped functioning, so she had to be placed on dialysis. Lucky for her, my aunts cared enough to be trained on the process, and she was able to have it done in her home, that's if you consider that lucky. The next thing diabetes took was her sight. It continued taking from her until there was nothing more to take. As if losing your sight was not enough, it took the sensation off of her feet, then it decided to take her toes and eventually her feet. What happens to a person that needs to be dialyzed every other day, can no longer see or walk? They slowly lose their will to live, until one day, that will is completely gone. It is an extremely difficult thing to watch someone you love, suffer on a daily basis. At the end of their journey, you find comfort in knowing that they are no longer suffering, but you also wonder, is there anything I could have done to prevent this? To my previous question, the PA profession was my answer.
I believe that most medical problems can be prevented with the right care and knowledge, and if they cannot be prevented, they can be stopped from progressing. I want to become a PA because I want to keep people and their families from experiencing the pain my family and I went through with my grandma. I know it is not possible to save everyone, but I want the opportunity to at least try. I have always known I wanted to be a part of the medical field. Every time someone asks me, why do you want to be a physician assistant, my response is always because I cannot imagine being anything else. I placed myself in a job that would allow me to experience the duties of a physician assistant. I have seeing the ins and outs. I have been a part of it, not as a PA, but as scribe that works very closely with them in the clinic or in the emergency department. Every day, I am amazed by their skills and knowledge. I learn something new, a new approach, a new technique, a new diagnosis, a new treatment with every shift, and I just want to keep on learning. I have learned how to differentiate a Bell's Palsy from a TIA or a stroke. I have learned the importance of the NIH stroke scale and the importance of properly assessing the score. I can tell you that a sudden sharp pain to your back and a positive CVA most likely means a kidney stone or pyelonephritis due to a urinary tract infection. A pain to your RLQ with a high white blood cell count and a positive McBurney's point could definitely be a sign for acute appendicitis or how an elevated amylase/lipase level accompanied by nausea and vomiting probably means pancreatitis, especially if that pain occurs after eating greasy/spicy foods. I have loved every single minute of working as a scribe. I cannot wait to start this career and apply everything I have and will learn. Physician assistants are not afraid or intimidated by how complicated a patient might be because of how prepared they are. They have this confidence because if they have a question about how to proceed with a patient, they have the benefit of consulting with the attending physician. There are limitations to how much we know, which is why this is one of the great benefits of the physician assistant career. My main goal as a provider would be to offer the best care to a patient, and knowing that I have the opportunity to ask for help or guidance from the supervising attending would allow me to do that. I also like the flexibility of the PA career. As a PA, you have the opportunity to work in different specialties, for me that is essential because I have multiple interests. I love working in the clinic setting as well as the ER, and by becoming a PA, I would have the opportunity to work in both.
As a scribe working in the clinic, I have seen the high demand and need for PA's in South Texas, especially in the Rio Grande Valley. The Valley is a highly underserved area, especially when it comes to healthcare. The doctor I work with, has over 1,000 patients assigned to her. If it were not because of the PA's, she would not be able to provide the care they deserve. They make a huge difference. The gratitude they receive from the patients is unlike any other. I love South Texas and know that I can positively impact the community when it comes to their medical needs
My goal is to enroll into a PA program that will prepare me with the adequate skills and knowledge that are necessary to provide the best medical attention the people from The Valley deserve. I know that the PA journey will be challenging and difficult, I am counting on it. I know this career requires excellence, and I am prepared to give it all that I have in order to succeed as a physician assistant. I understand my grades my first three semesters are not the best. It was not easy adapting to college after being in the same school for 12 years. Those grades do not reflex who I am as a student, once I adapted and found a new study method that works for me, my GPA improved. . I will continue to work until this goal has been achieved
By Guest JohnT
Hey everyone, thanks for taking the time to review my essay.
This is my very first draft of my personal statement for PA school. I touched on a few things that are important to me, such as my mission trip, but I feel like it may have gotten jumbled. I really wanted to focus on my desire to help people before they develop chronic conditions. Please critique and let me know which parts I should stress more and which I could do without. Also, I'm still working on a stronger conclusion. Right now it's 4341 characters with spaces. Thank you.
“Can I listen to your heart?” Kayla, the physician assistant (PA), asked the toddler crawling under the examination table. His mother had brought him to the emergency room (ER) for a fever and persistent cough. As a shadow, I was able to witness the patience that Kayla had for this restless child. She squatted to his level to make him feel comfortable and took the time to explain to his mother what she was looking for in terms of signs and symptoms of any serious illness. This pattern continued as she attended to patients with sprains, pregnancy complications, lacerations, etc. When she needed to examine an x-ray or test result, there was always the option to consult with the doctor for a second opinion. During my time as a shadow, I have met nurse practitioners, doctors, and other physician assistants who all work independently, yet as a team, to provide care for the ER patients. Mike, another PA I shadowed at that ER, has worked in several different specialties over the past 20 years, but enjoys emergency medicine because he can apply all of his skills. This ability to care for people in such a versatile, independent, caring manner is what attracted me to the PA profession.
As a child, I actually wanted to become a veterinarian because I loved caring for my pets. Whenever my dog got sick, I always volunteered to give him his medicine. However, after my senior year of high school, I became part of a team to go on a short-term mission trip to the Dominican Republic. During this trip, we played with children in dirt streets, encouraged women in a jail, and sang with a youth group. Despite how I felt about animals, I could not forget the deep sense of fulfillment that comes with bringing a smile to a person’s face. From then on, I decided to modify my career goals from one that cares for pets to one that directly impacts a person’s life.
During my undergraduate studies, I applied this goal as a math tutor. I enjoyed spending extra time with my students to ensure they were confident in their understanding of a certain topic. All of my students were unique; therefore I initially assessed them to determine what kind of problems they had and which approach I should take when explaining a topic.
Until my last years of undergraduate studies, I did not know about the versatile profession of PAs. Prior to this discovery, my eagerness to help people and learn human biology led me to consider going to medical school. The more I researched, the more I learned about the similarities of PAs to doctors, particularly the ability to assess patients, prescribe medications, and even perform surgery. Once I recognized that PAs lack the stress of owning a practice, while gaining the flexibility to practice different specialties, I was swayed away from medical school and towards becoming a PA.
In order to gain more exposure to the healthcare field, I became an emergency medical technician (EMT). Over the past year, I have gained valuable experience in assessing patients and learning about various medical conditions. I treat each of my patients with the utmost respect, knowing that I may be in any of their positions one day. Most of my patients are from convalescent homes in medically underserved areas and have a list of chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and renal disease.
There are no definitive cures for these conditions, but there are preventions. A few years ago, both of my parents went through a detox program run by a PA at our local family and urgent care center. She ordered blood tests to determine their levels of cholesterol, vitamins, and nutrients and met with them regularly to help them through the program. As people become more concerned with their health, the need for health professionals to assess and treat them will escalate. As a tutor, I taught students about math concepts they did not understand. As a PA, I would like to teach patients about their health to help them thrive and live a sustaining life.
Through tutoring, volunteering, and healthcare experience, I have learned compassion that I can apply to my future patients. The beauty of PAs is that I can specialize as I feel the desire to do so, while still being able to return to other fields. They are more affordable for the general population and more available for the increasing number of patients.