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Having distinct passions & switching specialties later on

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I have a friend who is a fellow new grad PA, and she is considering a 2-year residency program in psych. She has a passion for psychiatry and could see herself making big differences there, however she is worried that she may begin to forget general medicine if she only works in psych for 2 or 3 years. Her other passion is ortho surgery (and other general surgery). She has also considered pediatrics and inpatient neonatal as other close-2nd choices.

So, I'm wondering if anyone has had to decide between two fairly distinct specialties or switched between the two, years down the road. In particular has anyone here gone from a psych residency program to another specialty (or moonlighted / floated elsewhere)... or any other residency program to something else?

In general, how difficult is it to find a general medicine or even surgery job after working only in psych for a while?

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      Interested in Surgery?

      An introduction to the OR team


       
      By Robert M. Blumm, MA, PA-C, DFAAPA


       
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      Robert M. Blumm is a surgical physician assistant who lives in Amityville, N.Y. He has served as president of the American Association of Surgical Physician Assistants, the Association of Plastic Surgery Physician Assistants, the New York State Society of Physician Assistants and the American College of Clinicians. He is a member of the editorial advisory board for ADVANCE for NPs & PAs. Blumm has completed a disclosure form and reports no relationships related to the content of this article.


       
      References

      1. Kurzweg FT. The patient, his surgeon and the record. In: The Surgeon’s Handbook. Garden City, N.Y.: Medical Examination Publishing Company , Inc.; 1982: 3.

      2. Position statement of the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses. One Perioperative Registered Nurse Circulator Dedicated to every Patient Undergoing a Surgical or Other Invasive Procedure. http://www.aorn.org/Clinical_Practice/Position_Statements/Position_Statements.aspx. Accessed Dec. 27, 2011.

      3. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Conditions of participation for hospitals: surgical services. http://www.cms.gov/manuals/downloads/som107ap_a_hospitals.pdf. Accessed Dec. 27, 2011.

      4. Sweeny F. Who’s the person giving my anesthesia? In: Sweeny F. The Anesthesia Fact Book. Perseus Publications; 2003: 3-12.

      5. University of Cincinnati Residents, Berry S. The Mont Reid Surgical Handbook. 4th ed. Mosby;1997.

      6. Sumpter R. Anesthesia. In: Labus JB. The Physician Assistant Surgical Handbook. W.B. Saunders; 1998: 19.

      7. All about anesthesia. American Association of Registered Nurse Anesthetists. http://www.aana.com/forpatients/Pages/All-About-Anesthesia.aspx. Accessed Dec. 27, 2011.

      8. Facts about AAs. American Academy of Anesthesiologist Assistants website. http://www.anesthetist.org/factsaboutaas/. Accessed Dec. 27, 2011.

      9. Weis MK. The first assistant and collaborative practice. In: Rothrock JC, Seifert PC. Assisting in Surgery: Patient-Centered Care. Competency & Credentialing Institute; 2009: 387-405.

      10. American Association of Surgical Physician Assistants website. www.aaspa.net. Accessed Dec. 27, 2011.

      11. Blumm RM, Condit D. Surgical physician assistants help solve contemporary problems. Bull Amer Coll Surg. 2003;88(6):14-18. http://www.facs.org/fellows_info/bulletin/2003/blummcondit0603.pdf. Accessed Dec. 27, 2011.

      12. Manz EA, et al. Clipping, prepping and draping for surgical procedures. Managing Infection Control. 2006;August: 84-97.

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