Jump to content
corpsman89

The case for Medical Practitoner

Recommended Posts

I wanted to make a very brief and to-the-point case for a new title: Medical Practitioner. 

As a profession what we need more than ever is our own path

* How do we separate ourselves from NPs? Well, the biggest thing is that we practice medicine within the medical model. 

* How do we separate ourselves from Physicians? Well, we aren't physicians and did not train as one, but we still practice medicine. 

My point is that Medical Practitioner not only describes what we do perfectly, but it gives us our own path. We can say we are a practitioner just like NPs, but we practice in the medical model. We can say that we practice medicine similar to Physicians, but our training was more accelerated and we did not attend a full residency, and therefore we are practitioners. 

 

Edited by corpsman89
  • Like 10
  • Upvote 13

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree 100% and have been pushing this for 20 years while watching zero change from our leadership.  This profession needs a revolution or the next gen of "Assistants" are going to be/ARE being steamrolled by NP's for jobs.  Where I live it's already happening.  It's time to demand change and stop "hoping for the best".  Sadly, I don't think it will ever happen.  To many dinosaurs not willing to throw a lifeline to the new providers and change the name. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree- for too long the AAPA line has been that PR happens "one patient at a time". well , that hasn't worked. time for a new name and a huge PR campaign to show Americans that we are not medical assistants.

  • Like 2
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder how much money does the AAPA earmark annually for telling the people who we are and what we do.  Do they target Pharma or MD organizations to educate them?  How much money??

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, TWR said:

I wonder how much money does the AAPA earmark annually for telling the people who we are and what we do.  Do they target Pharma or MD organizations to educate them?  How much money??

From what I can tell it's not very much. 

Look on YouTube at some of the AAPA commercial videos that they released several months back. The one below has a grand total of 163 views. It's obviously ONLY PAs who are looking a these videos. They probably spent a good chunk of change on these videos and they did absolutely NOTHING with them aside from uploading them onto YouTube. Its a waste. 

 

  • Like 3
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, TWR said:

I wonder how much money does the AAPA earmark annually for telling the people who we are and what we do.  Do they target Pharma or MD organizations to educate them?  How much money??

kinda wish they would educate legislators that we are not medical assistants....I know there are "PA day on the hill activities", but these are mostly PAs volunteering their time to see their representatives, not a paid lobbyist movement every day...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree as well. Unfortunately, many can't see past the PA initials and therefore want to keep the name the same or settle on a name that includes the initials. I think this is a mistake.

From a marketing and branding perspective, Medical Practitioner makes the most sense. It is familiar, yet different enough to set us apart. It is descriptive, and will be easily understood by patients, legislators, hospital admin, hiring managers, etc. Those who know what an NP is will have no problem understanding what a Medical Practitioner is, and we would actually benefit from the branding of NPs in areas where they are well known (which are many). At the same time, it would differentiate us from NPs and show we are trained in the medical model and practice medicine. Win-win.  

People who are grasping at physician associate seem to do so either because of some desire to keep the initials, or because it was used briefly early in the profession. However, it simply doesn't make as much sense as a title, and isn't as strong of a change. To a physician, a "physician associate" is used to describe their physician colleagues, and many of them have voiced displeasure due to that reason. I have never heard a physician call themselves a medical practitioner, and using that title would help us stand on our own as a profession by taking "physician" out of our title. Physician associate also doesn't prevent the apostrophe issue of ownership, and that puts us back to square one.

After weighing the pros and cons of each title, I think that Medical Practitioner is truly the best option, and changing to this name will bring a certain amount of publicity itself. OTP is a big step forward for our profession, and we should move forward with it as Medical Practitioners. 

Edited by ProSpectre
  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
48 minutes ago, TWR said:

I wonder how much money does the AAPA earmark annually for telling the people who we are and what we do.  Do they target Pharma or MD organizations to educate them?  How much money??

Not enough money or time. I have been an AAPA member since graduating PA school and if they will not make change this year then I am done. Even though it cost me nothing, I will tell my employer that I am saving them money. I am so sick of the AAPA not doing anything! I hope Dave Mitt will do some good for US. I am tired of being the low man on the pole even when our education/training is much more superior than NP training (and my wife is an FNP).  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I completely agree. I hate the title physician associate. I don’t see it being any better than physician assistant. Hopefully, if the title does change, it’s changed to medical practitioner 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am ok with physician associate > assistant, but I don't believe in the current political climate we could get it through in all 50 states. MP makes more sense from that perspective.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IMHO, medical practitioner is too generic.  It is a broad term that encompasses several professions.  Trying to make a general term "all ours" will be impossible.  Do you mean a "Medical Practitioner" formerly physician assistant, or are you referring to medical practitioners in general?

 

I prefer Associate Physician.

Edited by LKPAC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, LKPAC said:

IMHO, medical practitioner is too generic.  It is a broad term that encompasses several professions.  Trying to make a general term "all ours" will be impossible.  Do you mean a "Medical Practitioner" formerly physician assistant, or are you referring to medical practitioners in general?

 

I prefer Associate Physician.

Associate physician will NEVER happen. We are not Physicians, and that titles implies that we are. 

We are practitioners. We practice within the medical model: Medical Practitioner. 

We are a lot like NPs, except our training is much better because we learn in the medical model. 

Edited by corpsman89
  • Like 2
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Someone in another thread awhile back suggested the term "paraphysician," analogous to a paramedic or a paralegal. I think that has a nice ring to it but doubt it would catch on. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, karebear12892 said:

Someone in another thread awhile back suggested the term "paraphysician," analogous to a paramedic or a paralegal. I think that has a nice ring to it but doubt it would catch on. 

This implies that PA's are at a paraprofessional level rather than a professional level (i.e. paramedic, paralegal, paraeducator). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, karebear12892 said:

Someone in another thread awhile back suggested the term "paraphysician," analogous to a paramedic or a paralegal. I think that has a nice ring to it but doubt it would catch on. 

Not a fan. Paramedics do not practice medicine and paralegals do not practice law. Plus it still says “we are like physicians but less.” I’d rather something that stands on its own.

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, corpsman89 said:

Associate physician will NEVER happen. We are not Physicians, and that titles implies that we are. 

We are practitioners. We practice within the medical model: Medical Practitioner. 

We are a lot like NPs, except our training is much better because we learn in the medical model. 

I I wouldn't say our training is better cause it's it's the medical model, I would like to be more in the natural route as well. Our training is better cause we spend more time in studies, we study the body not theory, and west get a lot more clinical experience. I like things about both professions but PA is much more of a solid education. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, camoman1234 said:

I I wouldn't say our training is better cause it's it's the medical model, I would like to be more in the natural route as well. Our training is better cause we spend more time in studies, we study the body not theory, and west get a lot more clinical experience. I like things about both professions but PA is much more of a solid education. 

True, but people get bored after the first sentence. We cannot go around telling everybody why PAs have better education, you just look like a tool doing so. No one wants (or cares) to hear you spew off how many ours of didactic and clinical hours you have compared to NPs, etc. We need something short and sweet.

Schmuck: "I think NPs are better than Medical Practitioners because NPs practice patient centered care"

You, or me: "NPs train in the nursing model, but what makes Medical Practitioners so great is that we train within the medical model, similar to physicians, and while we also practice patient centered care, we have a much more thorough education because of it. " 

Using the whole "we are trained in the medical model" things is a nice argument because I would sure rather have someone treating me who trained in the medical model vs the nursing model. I don't know why we don't capitalize on this more currently, but with a new title like Medical Practitioner it would be second nature to mention it, and it goes along perfectly with the title. 

Edited by corpsman89
  • Like 1
  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tbh Medical Practitioner sounds cool but I agree with @LKPAC its such a generic term. 

1.) It doesn't properly define a PA that firsts assists in surgery.

2) Confusing with some docs, friend of my told me his uncle is a "Family Medicine Practitioner" aka an MD who does family medicine. In that sense he sounds like a "Medical Practitioner" .

Personally, I like keeping the initials PA regardless of what it stands for. I think as PAs we should universalize the DEGREE granted rather than a full blown name change. Right now there is like 4 degrees granted nationwide (maybe more) I propose it should be standardized to MMS (Master of Medical Sciences) 

So you can introduce yourself as John Doe the PA, with a Masters in Medicine. This makes sense and differentiates us from Physicians who have their Doctorate in Medicine or Doctorate of Osteopathic medicine, or NPs who have a masters/doctorate in nursing..we'd have a masters in Medicine. 

Idk just my two cents while I take a break from studying >.< 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, OneDayPA-C said:

Tbh Medical Practitioner sounds cool but I agree with @LKPAC its such a generic term. 

1.) It doesn't properly define a PA that firsts assists in surgery.

2) Confusing with some docs, friend of my told me his uncle is a "Family Medicine Practitioner" aka an MD who does family medicine. In that sense he sounds like a "Medical Practitioner" .

Personally, I like keeping the initials PA regardless of what it stands for. I think as PAs we should universalize the DEGREE granted rather than a full blown name change. Right now there is like 4 degrees granted nationwide (maybe more) I propose it should be standardized to MMS (Master of Medical Sciences) 

So you can introduce yourself as John Doe the PA, with a Masters in Medicine. This makes sense and differentiates us from Physicians who have their Doctorate in Medicine or Doctorate of Osteopathic medicine, or NPs who have a masters/doctorate in nursing..we'd have a masters in Medicine. 

Idk just my two cents while I take a break from studying >.< 

 

I agree with you about having a universal degree but honestly, no one cares. (I agree MMS is a the best degree)

It may be in your mind being a student, but it will absolutely mean nothing to your patients, co-workers, etc. And even if you wish to place it pretentiously on your coat, it will still mean nothing to people. I just some it up that all PAs basically have masters in medicine regardless of what their specific degree actually says. 

But I do have a question. Why do you feel keeping the PA initials is a good thing? 

 

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, corpsman89 said:

I agree with you about having a universal degree but honestly, no one cares. (I agree MMS is a the best degree)

It may be in your mind being a student, but it will absolutely mean nothing to your patients, co-workers, etc. And even if you wish to place it pretentiously on your coat, it will still mean nothing to people. I just some it up that all PAs basically have masters in medicine regardless of what their specific degree actually says. 

But I do have a question. Why do you feel keeping the PA initials is a good thing? 

 

I don't think that it "means nothing" and no one cares. I see a potentially large benefit in standardization of the degree- it becomes universal and there is no patchwork of different (and misleading) degrees for the same clinician. It is one less thing to worry about when talking to the public, legislators, etc. "We are called PAs, but are not assistants. Also, although our degrees are very different in name (MMS, MS, MPAS, MS PAS, MHS), they all mean the same thing, and that MPAS does not mean we are a master at physician-assisting studies, even though its easy to see it that way." That begins to sound silly..

Edited by lemurcatta

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, OneDayPA-C said:

Tbh Medical Practitioner sounds cool but I agree with @LKPAC its such a generic term. 

1.) It doesn't properly define a PA that firsts assists in surgery.

2) Confusing with some docs, friend of my told me his uncle is a "Family Medicine Practitioner" aka an MD who does family medicine. In that sense he sounds like a "Medical Practitioner" .

Personally, I like keeping the initials PA regardless of what it stands for. I think as PAs we should universalize the DEGREE granted rather than a full blown name change. Right now there is like 4 degrees granted nationwide (maybe more) I propose it should be standardized to MMS (Master of Medical Sciences) 

So you can introduce yourself as John Doe the PA, with a Masters in Medicine. This makes sense and differentiates us from Physicians who have their Doctorate in Medicine or Doctorate of Osteopathic medicine, or NPs who have a masters/doctorate in nursing..we'd have a masters in Medicine. 

Idk just my two cents while I take a break from studying >.< 

 

1. MD and NP who first assist in surgery are still MD and NP. That should not be a problem.

2. Personally, I never heard any MD introduce themselves as "practitioner." But that is just me. They usually like to say " I am DR. John Doe, I practice family medicine" 

I was a big supporter of Physician Associate when I was a student. When I was a student there was a movement in 2010 for a title change to Physician Associate. I thought Physician Associate is a "good enough" title. 

After 7 to 8 years of practicing, dealing with patients, administrator, and moving up the ladder as I become a more experienced provider I realized Physician Associate can potentially hold us back just like Assistant. That title is "not good enough." 

In my opinion, we need a generic title. We need a clear and simple title to let people know we practice medicine. We need a name that is simple enough for people to understand we are here to make medical decision as soon as we introduced our title. The definition of what we do should be in the name, as simple as that. 

"PA practice medicine" is the key idea of all the AAPA promotion. We don't have any success with that because it is very hard to convince people assistant practice medicine.

 

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, lemurcatta said:

I don't think that it "means nothing" and no one cares. I see a potentially large benefit in standardization of the degree- it becomes universal and there is no patchwork of different (and misleading) degrees for the same clinician. It is one less thing to worry about when talking to the public, legislators, etc. "We are called PAs, but are not assistants. Also, although our degrees are very different in name (MMS, MS, MPAS, MS PAS, MHS), they all mean the same thing, and that MPAS does not mean we are a master at physician-assisting studies, even though its easy to see it that way." That begins to sound silly..

I agree that standardization of the degree should happen, and it's something we should work towards.

However, I think it will follow naturally after a title change becomes a reality, as it doesn't really make sense for schools to offer a Master's in Physician Assistant Studies to become a Medical Practitioner. 

 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, ProSpectre said:

I agree that standardization of the degree should happen, and it's something we should work towards.

However, I think it will follow naturally after a title change becomes a reality, as it doesn't really make sense for schools to offer a Master's in Physician Assistant Studies to become a Medical Practitioner. 

 

I do not disagree, but it would be easier if programs switched to MMS before a title change that way they aren’t awarding degrees that don’t match the new title. This will happen for some time even after a name change, because universities are very burecratic places. Changeing the name of a degree often requires long petitions, committee approvals, regents/boars involvement, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.



― Friedrich Nietzsche 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Welcome to the Physician Assistant Forum! This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn More