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Hi all I'm a new grad and I'm 2 weeks into my first job of family care and I am burnt out. I am having a hard time learning the new emr, medicine, and balancing all the patients I have to see . I feel like the supervising physician is getting a little frustrated with my learning curve. Although they told me when I was hired that they are new grad friendly, it's pretty stressful! How long is appropriate to stay at your first job?

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I'm still in school but it sounds like you may be throwing in the towel a bit prematurely? I don't think any job is going to be "easy" 2 weeks outa school. 

 

My advice: keep your chin up/put your nose to the grindstone (preferably not at the same time) - and keep truckin'

 

I'm sure some of the more veteran PA's will tell you to stick it out for 6mo-1yr. 

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People always say how busy PA school is, with the "drinking from a firehose" bit. Here is the terrifying truth for PA students and recent grads: many (most?) of you will find that "real life" is much more stressful and aggravating than PA school.

 

In PA school, most of your actions did not have serious consequences. Your faculty was working with you, supporting you and pulling for you to succeed. In "real life" you are part of corporate medicine and someone hired you to make money. Your institution views you not as a human being, but as a revenue stream. There are a bunch of attorneys - and probably even patients - hoping you make a mistake so they can win the lottery with a malpractice claim.

 

I have seen a number of new grads jump around jobs in the first year after graduation because they thought they were working too hard. By the third job, the horrible reality sinks in: this is what being a PA is really like. You work just as hard as a physician, with 1/3 of the salary and 1/10 of the respect.

 

Make no mistake, being a PA is still the best job ever and we do awesome things everyday. But be prepared for the life you chose.

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I left my first job after only a few months and now I'm a month into job #2. It was justified (I can give more details through PM if you want them), I somehow managed to leave on good terms and I LOVE my current job. CJAdmission's post is right on! I knew being an actual PA would be worlds harder than PA school- I'm an older new grad, so I had plenty of life experience going in. I took my first PA job against my "gut feeling" that it wasn't a good place to work because I was so desperate to have something lined up quickly. Big mistake, but I learned some valuable lessons and have found a job I plan to stick with for many years.

 

I am curious about details: how many patients are you expected to see? What are your hours? Does your SP like to teach? Are you seeing more acute or lots of complicated chronic patients? What's your emr- is it one with some training available? Do you have good support staff (your own RN/LPN/MA)? I'm asking all this stuff to see if you are in a good place and experiencing normal new PA stress or if you're in a bad situation for a new grad.

 

Being a new grad is hard. I love my current job and it is a really good fit for me, but it is still super stressful. I make mistakes, have to look so many things up, work slowly, and feel completely inadequate some days. Fortunately I am on an APP team with awesome providers who keep answering my questions patiently, encouraging me, and reassuring me that I am not expected to feel comfortable managing our everyday issues yet.

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Thanks guys for the motivation! Right now they have me seeing around 15 patients on my supervising physician's schedule and helping out the other providers with patients around the office. I am supposed to get my own schedule this week with around 23 - 25 patients per day. This gives me a lot of anxiety because I am already struggling with the current patient load I have now, and to increase it by 10 patient's .. I just don't know if I can handle that. They hired another new grad PA though who started a couple weeks before me and she's seeing 25 patients per day now and seems to be handling it just fine. So I feel bad if I complain. They try to assign me the easy acute patient's right now but I also get random chronic complicated diabetic follow up patients as well. Also I have no idea how to dose insulin.. 

 

To add, I dont want to leave this job for at least a year because I know it will look back to future employers, I am just afraid that my supervising physician and the physician co owner of the practice might lay me off because I am too slow/ not productive enough. This is a small private family medicine practice. 

 

I am learning a TON every day. I just feel bad that I feel like I am learning the emr system/medicine/patient flow a lot slower than the other PA's at the practice. :(

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I would recommend trying to sit down with your SP and discuss your concerns and ask for feedback on how you can improve your efficiency. Also, just because someone is seeing that many people doesn't mean they're also doing it safely. Any reasonable SP would rather you be slightly slower and safer than reckless.

 

In response to your other question I wound up switching jobs about 4 months in. I'd been hoping for ER but took an underpaid urgent care gig right out of school. I took a risk when the ER job fell in my lap but I'm glad I did. I've been there for two years now and plan on being there long term.

 

Being new is extremely stressful, but it does eventually get better with time and experience.

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