I am looking for a little insight on PA opportunities within the special operations community. I know that most spec ops groups, with the exception of special forces, has a PA that deploys with them, however there is not much information out there on how close to combat these PA's get. So far it sounds like Navy PA's who deploy with NSW does not get any action and it seems like PA's in the 75th Ranger Regiment get the most opportunities to get their hands dirty but the assignments are competitive. Does anyone have any experience with PA's in the 75th? I am very interested in operational medicine and being as far forward as possible, so any information about how to achieve that role as a PA in the military is greatly appreciated.
Thanks in advance,
Please help me make a complete list of Pros and Cons of being a PA vs Physician.
Shorter School Less expensive Work Life Balance Lateral movement in career Doctor:
Greater Pay More Autonomy Cons__________________________________
Lower Pay Less Autonomy Doctor:
Longer Training (residency) Limited to one medical specialty
I am in a very unique situation, and would love everyone's input!
I have been wanting to be a doctor my whole life, but after meeting my stepmother 10 years ago (who has been a Physician Assistant for over 20 years) I have grown to have a great admiration for the profession and countless hours of shadowing has given me a deeper understanding of the PA role. When I applied last cycle to PA schools I did not get a single interview invite. I began to internalize the idea that perhaps the Physician Assistant profession was not in the books for me. I decided to apply again this cycle and retake a couple classes to help my science GPA. One of my professors this summer recommended I apply to Podiatry School which will allow me to become a doctor/surgeon with 2 years of didactic, 2 years of rotations and 3 years of residency. I was very desperate to be in medicine and felt like this was my golden ticket, I applied (literally on the last week of the cycle being open for Podiatry) and to my surprise I was accepted! I started podiatry school a few weeks after being notified this August 2020. I had applied again to PA school but given that I did not get a single interview invite, I felt that my odds were low and didn't want to miss out on what might be my only opportunity to be in healthcare. Then to an even bigger surprise I got accepted Into PA School just last month. My dilemma is that, if one year ago I had gotten into PA school that is where I would be, but I am now in medical school and have been struggling internally ever since I received notice of my acceptance into PA school.
Now this is me being very very honest. Due to life circumstances, I am almost 30 and just now starting medical school. Although this has been a dream of mine, I can't help but feel that in 7 years when I am done with my residency, I will have career fulfillment but at the expense of personal sacrifice. I am currently engaged and we would like to have kids in the future, but with the way school is going I can't image doing either of those while I'm still in school (although I know it is possible). PA has always been high on my list because of the flexibility it provides. I witnessed my stepmother have the opportunity to easily adjust her work schedule as my brothers were growing up so that she could prioritize her personal life and even switch specialists based on her new interest and schedule desires.
I guess I am hoping to get feedback on weather or not I should quite medical school to start PA school next Fall. I know that this is a decision that I alone can make, so I'm hoping that someone can give me the pros and cons to being a Doctor over a PA and a PA over a Doctor.
Thanks in advance! 🙂