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hi,

 

i wanted to ask all you guys, professional PAs, that are you happy with what you do? Being PA might be lots less stressful than being MD, assuming here, don't know the facts, but are you guys happy with what you do day in and day out? it will be interesting hear different perspectives on this.

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I am. I love my practice and my patients. I recently left a pretty great paying specialty job to work FP and HIV medicine (which was my late mentors practice. One of his protege MDs and I reopened it after he died) the old patients I knew for years pre-pa are now MY pts. I suppose it depends on where you land. I make a lot less now too but I'm happier. Money never really drove me though.

 

Sent from my myTouch_4G_Slide using Tapatalk

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I am very happy with my job. It is the dream job I always wanted. I am far more stressed by far than my SP, who shows up to see a few patients when he feels like it and I take care of all the business end and running the practice. We play reverse roles in that, when he had a really complex, difficult patient, he passes them on to me.

 

It has been a long road to get here.

 

I will say that while I'm very happy with my practice I'm in now and I've been a PA for 30 years, I am a bit disappointed in our profession. We have come a long ways over 30 years but the NPs are leaving us in their dust. I'm a bit concerned about the next generation if something isn't done. The future looks like this MD+DO, near them DNP then all the above with the role of potentially supervising physician assistants.

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Guest Paula

I love my job in family practice. I agree with jmj11 though on the future of PA's and shudder to think I could one day be supervised by a DNP! Really! It's a scary thought. Pre-PA and current PA students need to take up the mantle to push this profession forward and unshackle us. IMHO!

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hi,

 

i wanted to ask all you guys, professional PAs, that are you happy with what you do? Being PA might be lots less stressful than being MD, assuming here, don't know the facts, but are you guys happy with what you do day in and day out? it will be interesting hear different perspectives on this.

 

my perspective is that of a new graduate who has only been working two months. i left a higher paying job and took a paycut to become a PA. i would say all in all i am happy. as opposed to many others here, i do work much less than my SP. however, i still work at least 60 hours a week, and about 80 hours when i'm on call...and i do not get lunch breaks. sometimes no time to pee too!

 

i think the only thing that would make me more happy with my job is if i knew what i was doing. i am still completely clueless, and i still staff EVERYTHING with my SP. i am learning so much, but i wish i could just accelerate that process :) i am lucky to work with an amazing SP. he's super smart and compassionate...just a workaholic haha

 

i think if i could do it all over again, it would have been nice to go MD route, but all in all i am happy where i'm at

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10 months out of school. I love my job. Granted, I got a cherry gig. I work urgent care 3 days/wk and travel 45 mi to work family practice/urgent care in a rural native american clinic 1 day/wk. So, I work 4 12s (roughly, some days a little shorter, some a little longer) and make a good amount of money. We, as a family, have been blessed by having this as my profession. And I love it. This is the first job I've ever had where I go to work at the end of the day thinking, "I get to come back tomorrow and do that again." I get to practice medicine and take care of people. I do it with a great schedule. I see my family quite a lot and we get to enjoy the fruits of my labor. Couldn't be happier. Ask me again in 10 years. I am willing to bet the answer will be the same.

 

Andrew

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Depends on the day. Some days happy...many days not as much. We'll just say arbitrary restrictions are....well, arbitrary.

 

The occasional disrespect from physicians (usually unintended, but stings just as much), practice guidelines that pretty much suck, and knowing that I can see the exact same patient load as the physician but make half as much in income puts a damper on the enthusiasm. Then there's the patients....."So when are you done with your training?" "When am I going to see a real doctor?" "Oh, so you're the assistant, who's going to be my doctor?" Add to that all of the drug seekers, non compliant patients, and people who abuse the system and are just not nice, as well as the borderlines and psych patients and most of my shift is spent explaining that I'm not going to do anything for them and that they need to be seen in the clinic. Not even to mention the dreaded P word........PARENTS.......nothing worse than a kid with the sniffles and an overbearing parent demanding cultures and antibiotics....The kids are great.....the parents....not so much. I actually had an adult patient last night who called me the biggest as*hole he'd ever met, and loudly announced to the ED (and to my delight security) that he was going "have my job" because I wouldn't give him any Oxycontin. I told him that better people than him have tried and failed, but good luck.

 

Part of the reason that I am moving away from practicing as a PA and towards a full time research career.

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I got a good laugh out of this ... not a chance.

 

Read the original Family Medical Leave Act. I was horrified when it passed. It defined practitioners (who could determine FMLA) as MDs, DOs and NPs. Then in the next paragraph it said that nurses, MAs and physician's assistants could also sign the form if directly supervised by and co-signed by an MD, DO or NP. The AAPA did work on getting the language changed a couple of years later. But if we portray a professional inferiority then legislation will eventually treat us that way.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Patient care and practicing medicine is no less stressful for a PA than doc.

This is one of the common misconceptions about PA practice, along with the idea that we work fewer hrs, have more free time, spend more time with patients, work "under a physician's license", can't get sued, etc....

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a lot happier this month since I finally made the decision to go to 100% nights, avoiding the hostility of(nursing) admin on the day shifts telling me where to put my coffee and to wash my hands between every breath.

it will involve a salary hit but it will be worth it.

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a lot happier this month since I finally made the decision to go to 100% nights, avoiding the hostility of(nursing) admin on the day shifts telling me where to put my coffee and to wash my hands between every breath.

it will involve a salary hit but it will be worth it.

 

A salary hit to work all nights ? Needless to say, those are traditionally viewed as the more undesirable shifts, no? Seems backwards. Unless you cut hours....

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Patient care and practicing medicine is no less stressful for a PA than doc.

This is one of the common misconceptions about PA practice, along with the idea that we work fewer hrs, have more free time, spend more time with patients, work "under a physician's license", can't get sued, etc....

 

than why do we get paid significantly less then doc? And, and we hit the salary plateau quicker, assuming here. not sure if any PA makes 200k after 15+ years experience. looks like tons of added frustrations.

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A salary hit to work all nights ? Needless to say, those are traditionally viewed as the more undesirable shifts, no? Seems backwards. Unless you cut hours....

I do get more/hr to work nights but we also earn money based on production and nights are slower than days. typical production bonus for day shift is around 22-25 dollars/hr on top of base hourly rate. night shift averages $10/hr in production. the night differential is 5 dollars/hr so I end up down 7-10 dollars/hr.

night shifts are a bit longer so I will be working more hrs but will still end up in the red vs all days or a mix of days and nights...and I don't care, it's still a lot of money, more than 95% of pa's make probably. making even more money isn't worth it if I hate going to work...and I was hating work when I was doing days....

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than why do we get paid significantly less then doc? And, and we hit the salary plateau quicker, assuming here. not sure if any PA makes 200k after 15+ years experience. looks like tons of added frustrations.

docs set the salaries for pa's and value our work less than their own.

pa's who work A LOT in a specialty can make 200k. one of my partners does but he works 24-26 days/mo., I work 17-18.

docs hire pa's to do the work they don't want to do at the times and places they don't want to do it so they can be home with their families at night and on holidays, spring break, etc.

docs in my group work around 100-110 hrs/mo. for >350k/yr

most pa's in my group work 160-180 hrs/mo for 135-150k or so depending on production.

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That also depends if you get production pay or bonuses E...I know that I don't and no one at this institution does. No one. Docs included. You get paid a straight salary.

we get hourly + production bonuses quarterly based on rvu's of pts seen.

I actually prefer a no bonus system. I think working on production makes folks get sloppy in an effort to see more pts.

I assume my bonus will be zero and try to base my life on that. I won't speed up just to see an extra pt or 2 at the end of shift to make more money. that leads to poor outcomes and poor documentation.

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we get hourly + production bonuses quarterly based on rvu's of pts seen.

I actually prefer a no bonus system. I think working on production makes folks get sloppy in an effort to see more pts.

I assume my bonus will be zero and try to base my life on that. I won't speed up just to see an extra pt or 2 at the end of shift to make more money. that leads to poor outcomes and poor documentation.

 

I as well don't have any RVU/bonus/production system- we're also just straight salary. It definitely takes the financial incentive out of it, which it should in the ED. And the added bonus is the rare encounter with a patient who likes to complain about how much they think they paid (which they actually didn't) for their ER visit. My response is always "I don't see any part of that- I make the same whether I see 50 patients a shift or none".

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so it the same situation for surgery PA vs FP PA or EM PA? Does sugery PA has to rush to see multiple patients as FP PA? or every place is different in how they set up the salary pay.

 

Surgical PAs don't typically see their "own" patients, they operate and do periop care on pts consulted by surgeons. These positions are salaried or hourly.

Certain surgical PA jobs may bill per pt for procedures (ortho).

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