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Program Overview

Physician Assistants are health care professionals licensed to practice medicine in collaboration with their physician partners. As part of their comprehensive responsibilities, they conduct physical exams, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret tests, provide counsel on preventive health care, assist in surgery, and write prescriptions. Physician assistants have a close working relationship with physicians. They are educated in the medical model designed to complement physician training.

Within the physician-PA relationship, physician assistants exercise autonomy in medical decision-making and provide a broad range of diagnostic and therapeutic services. A PA's practice may also include education, research, and administrative services. This Program seeks to prepare exceptional physician assistants to practice as an integral part of the health care team. Miami Dade College has a distinguished history in contributing talented health care providers to the health care industry both locally and nationally.

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Program Details

During the first year, students complete course work in the basic and applied sciences including, clinical medicine, pharmacology, history/physical examination techniques, and surgical technical skills. Several of these courses have both a lecture and a laboratory component.

During the second year, students are provided the opportunity to develop their clinical skills and expand their knowledge by participating in supervised clinical practice experiences (SCPE) under the supervision of medical professionals such as physician assistants and physicians. To provide students with a broad range of clinical experience, the program utilizes numerous hospitals, primary care centers, and free standing clinical settings within the State of Florida.

Certification

Upon graduation, PAs take a national certification examination developed by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). To maintain their national certification, PAs must complete 100 hours of continuing medical education credits every two years and sit for a recertification exam every ten years. Graduation from an accredited physician assistant program and successful completion of the national certifying exam are required to obtain state licensure and the privilege to practice medicine with the collaboration of a physician.

Accreditation and Pass Rate

Get details about program accreditation and student pass rates.

Mission and Goals

Physician Assistant Program Mission:
  • Provide high quality education and training opportunities in primary care for students from diverse cultural backgrounds interested in providing health care services to the medically under-served residents in urban and rural communities, especially in Florida.
  • Promote and maintain high academic and professional standards.
  • Participate in professional activities and continuing education to promote life-long learning.
  • Prepare each graduate with a level of didactic and clinical competence that provides successful entry into the profession. 
Physician Assistant Program Goals:
  • Admit physician assistant students from diverse cultural backgrounds.
  • Prepare physician assistant students to practice in the local South Florida community or local underserved areas.
  • Offer a curriculum to prepare physician assistant students to enter clinical practice.
  • Prepare physician assistant students to become leaders in the profession and in the community.

To learn more about the Miami Dade College PA program goals and outcomes, please download the Physician Assistant Goals PDF document

About the Associate of Science

The Associate of Science degree in Physician Assistant (PA) will be discontinued. Miami Dade College has instituted a new degree track to replace the previous pathway. The NEW degree track will now be the attainment of an AS degree in Health Services (60 credits) which will allow students to enroll in a PA option to pursue the Bachelor of Applied Sciences in Health Sciences with an Option in Physician Assistant Studies.

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