I speculate PAs will continue to strengthen their role in the U.S. healthcare system in the years to come.
With the passing of time, PAs have proven to be the most effective, resourceful and viable solution to our current healthcare predicament.
Members of our profession have answered the call to tackle today’s healthcare issues by being adaptable, flexible and ready to meet whatever the healthcare need may be.
At the same time, the PA profession has continued to validate what it stands for; it has remained a reliable and credible profession during its rapid growth period by never compromising the quality of PA programs or the PA graduates who are allowed to join the ranks of this distinguished profession.
We’ve seen other professions lose track of the important health issues we are currently facing and seek advances that only benefit their professional agenda.
Meanwhile, the PA leadership has remained steadfast, patient-centered and focused on issues that matter to our community.
- We have partnered alongside organizations and supported legislation(s) that sponsored important and noble causes that have promoted increased access to healthcare for uninsured Americans.
- We are serving honorably in the armed forces and public health corps.
- We are valuable instructors, teachers and professors actively involved in academia and research, promoting higher education with rigor.
- We are serving in public office positions.
- We are employed in federal agencies and private sectors, leading and partnering in all capacities using our clinical and additional skills to make a better tomorrow for everyone.
We’ve come a long way from what Eugene Stead, MD, envisioned. PAs have turned into an indispensable profession that is much-needed by any established healthcare system or healthcare CEO.
The future of PAs is beyond great. Our profession will continue to be rooted in the same principles that Stead designed. PAs will continue to be partners with their supervising physicians and to enhance patient care where patient care is needed.
Physicians will continue to excel at training PAs to maximize their skills and for PAs to continue to be proficient, dependable healthcare provider-augmenters.
With added knowledge, skills and technological advances, PAs will be able to forge new working arrangements to deliver care where care has never been delivered—to reach new frontiers while maintaining the delicate and intricate physician-PA relationship that has been so successful to our profession.
In addition, physicians will have more opportunities to embark in greater tasks with the support of well-trained PA-partners on their sides.
We have much to look forward to.
Happy PA Week to all of the great PA clinicians that are making a difference, day in and day out!
Ivan Carbonell, DHSc, MPH, PA–C, is staff occupational medicine PA at the Barquist Army Health Clinic in Fort Detrick, Md.
See also: PA Week and Advocacy