IMHO there is a great deal of potential in this specialty.
This article is a few months old but the numbers are solid...
According to this article ' Nationally about 1,800 PAs, or roughly 2% of the total number practicing, specialize in psychiatry'.
Looking at Psychiatrist shortage ' From 2003 to 2013, the number of practicing psychiatrists declined by 0.2%, to 37,889 nationally by 2013. During the same decade, the number of adult primary care doctors increased by 9.5%, to 211,121 total, and by 14.2% to 862,444 among physicians overall'. ' By 2015, 60% were 55 years or older'.
I know.... You are thinking that new grads need experience for this type of work. This is not true. The right personality and an opportunity are all you need.... That and a desire to work in mental health, I should say...
Of course you can apply for a clerkship. I found 7 programs here:
I've struggled with mental health issues my entire life and like many others, my problems peaked while in college. I would like to briefly address it in my personal statement because I think it could help explain some of the weaknesses in my application but I don't want it to come off as an excuse. Also, I'm concerned that adcoms will then see me as mentally unstable or unable to handle the stresses of PA school and consequently not give me a chance. I am currently taking the steps to improve both my mental health and my application and I would address that as well but I'm wondering if I should even bring it up or if I should scrap that section altogether? (I'll be applying in a few cycles from now but it never hurts to start early)
Fellow Psychiatry PAs;
I am rapidly approaching my 1 year mark with an outpatient psychiatry practice. I am looking for any input anyone has to offer WRT salary, bonus, contract terms etc.
I graduated approximately 1 year ago and I have only had this one job since. I recently changed my schedule from 5 days a week at 8 Hours per to 4 days at 10 hours per. On average I see XX patients per week. Currently my salary is competitive and we do get some benefits. We get 15 vacation days for year 1 then 20 per year, 5 sick days, 6 federal holidays, 5 CME days and $3,000. There is a bonus structure, it is a % for collections over 200K. I am not certain what this will amount to as I have not seen what my collections are.
I plan on asking for access to the billing data.
The practice has 4 MDs 3 total PAs and around 15 LCSWs, Psychologists and LPCs.
Any input would be greatly appreciated.
Hello. I am a M.S Mental Health counseling student (will qualify to get a LPC/LCADC/SAC) wanting to apply to a PA program. I have some questions:
1.) Has anyone heard of or know of anyone who has had an M.S in Mental Health apply to a program and got in?
2.) I am worried about the contact hours. During my program in the end I will have graduated with 1000hrs of contact hours with patients of all sorts. Does this look equally as good as someone who is an EMT etc.?
3.) My undergrad was not strong (2.7). I am glad my program saw something in me because now I have a graduate GPA of 3.5, would my undergrad hold me back?
I am taking the pre-reqs I need for PA programs while finishing up my M.S. Any advise would help thank you.
I stumbled across this forum a few months back and was looking for some guidance. After recalculating my uGPA I realize it is going to take some serious work to get my GPA back to anywhere remotely close to getting admitted into a PA program. If you can work with me here I would really appreciate it.
I went away to school when I was a freshman and ended up failing 5 courses sophomore year due to being young, stupid, going through a bad break up, and attempting to manage my dysfunctional family. I left this school with a 2.1.
I took a semester off, transferred to a different school and got a BA degree in media studies (definitely not what I wanted to do). There were sporadic Cs in my communication and media classes in this degree. My GPA was wiped when I got into this school and I started fresh (I know not really according to CASPA). I finished this with a 3.18, but that does not matter. The real overall GPA when these are calculated together is 2.8. I am a pretty intelligent guy. I just lacked structure and motivation during these years.
After finishing this degree I did some soul searching and really followed a path I wanted to follow. I took the MAT, wrote a solid essay, got great LORS, and got accepted into graduate school for counseling. I finished this degree last semester with a 3.9. Regardless, my transcripts before graduate school are not pretty at all. My graduate school transcript is A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A, A..........B. I worked very hard and developed great study habits and time management. I have been working in mental health as a case manager/counselor for the past year. I was a vocational counselor for people with schizophrenia, schizoaffective, depression, anxiety disorders, and various other psychological disorders. I recently accepted a new job which is more clinical. I utilize the DSM, do intakes, provide psychotherapy, case management, and frequently collaborate with PAs, psychiatrists, general practitioners, and nurses at a community based mental health center. I frequently treat people with psychotic disorders. I have not found out if this will count as direct HCE. I do assessments, treatment planning, medication monitoring, and counseling.
Three months ago my father passed away of cancer and that has been very tough. It has also given me motivation to follow my aspirations. I don't want to be the guy that says I got into medicine because of X family story, but in reality this event has made me look deeply into myself and pursue my dreams. I only took 2 biology courses in my undergrad and those are all passed the expiration to any of the schools I want to apply. I am starting fresh with all of my sciences.
I have also exercised the thought of applying to an OT program seeing that there is a program which counts graduate school GPA into the admission GPA where I am located.
I work 45 hours a week so I am limited on time to take these classes but I did find a Saturday Bio 1 class at my local community college. I am looking at making a 3-4 year plan to take classes, gain other types of experience, get involved in volunteering activities, gain PA shadow hours, and network. I frequently talk to the PA at our mental health center and she is very encouraging. I am well aware it is going to take me some time to get this all together but I want it so badly. I do have 2 friends who are PAs and I plan on sitting down with them and getting their feedback too.
Courses I am enrolled in for the fall:
General Biology 1
Intro to Sociology (if I go OT)
Intro to Psychology (required for PA program, retaking to get an A and refresh)
Medical Terminology (required for programs I am interested in)
What I plan on taking in the future:
General Biology II
Basic Chemistry I
General Chemistry I
General Chemistry II
Organic Chemistry I
Child Psychology (if I go OT)
Total it will be about an extra 70 credits post-bac.
If anyone could give me advice on:
1. Any recommendations regarding bringing my GPA up? I know securing As in my courses seems like the only possibility. Should I take other classes I know I can do well on?
2. Is my HCE acceptable? What other kind do you think I could secure given my 9-5 schedule? I have seen people have case management on their HCE experience before.
3. Any particular sequence I should take these courses in?
4. Will my Master's Degree in Counseling be of any benefit to me in the admissions process?
5. What are some other ways I can show admissions committees I can be a successful PA?
6. Any other impressions or guidance, advice, support you can provide?
Thank you in advance for your help. I really appreciate it. This is a great community and you all rock!