The Difference Between PAs and NPs

The Difference Between PAs and NPs

Get Started Today 888-839-9997 info@admissionshelpers.com 20 Minutes Free Consultation   So what is the difference between a physician assistant and nurse practitioner?  By Alyson Rockhold PA-C, MPH There are 5 nurse practitioners (NPs) and 2 physician assistants (PAs) that work at my office. Recently, a drug rep asked us, “So, what’s the difference between NPs and PAs anyways?” My co-workers and I looked at each other in uncertainty. One NP muttered, “Well, um, NPs are trained in the nursing model, and PAs are trained in the medical model?” Crickets. Everyone shrugged at each other, and the conversation flowed in a new direction. But I couldn’t stop thinking about it. What do these different training models mean in the real world? In my particular office, PAs and NPs do the same work and get the same pay. Are we any different after all? With a little digging, I discovered a few key distinctions between PAs and NPs, especially in their training, certification, and autonomy: Training As my co-worker pointed out, the classic explanation is that PAs are trained in the medical model, and NPs are trained in the nursing model. In my experience, this doesn’t change very much about how PAs and NPs act in a clinical setting. Most patients won’t even realize they’re being treated by different medical professionals. Even though I was trained as a PA to focus on the disease state, I also care enough about my patients to make sure they’re comfortable and to explain everything thoroughly to them. There are a few other differences in our training. The average PA program is 27 months and...
Combining PA school with public health training: Perspectives from a career as a PA MPH

Combining PA school with public health training: Perspectives from a career as a PA MPH

Get Started Today 888-839-9997 info@admissionshelpers.com 20 Minutes Free Consultation     Alyson Rockhold PA-C, MPH I stood in the Museum of Modern Art, mesmerized by Monet’s water lilies. I leaned in to inspect the precision and artfulness of each tiny brushstroke, then I stepped back to appreciate the beauty of all of those small spots of color working in unison.  I moved closer and then farther away, unsure which view I found more inspiring. As I swayed back and forth, it hit me: This is why I got a dual degree in both physician assistant (PA) studies and a master’s of public health (MPH). As a PA, I deal with disease one person at a time. Like the brushstrokes, each individual is important and deserves close inspection and thoughtful placement. Public health gives a wider perspective; letting me evaluate health on a larger scale and plan interventions that improve the health of entire communities!  And so my career has been a dance between leaning in to treat patients one-on-one in an exam room and then stepping back to evaluate the problem on a bigger scale. I loved how these two degree plans were woven together in my dual degree program. In the morning, I leaned in to learn physical exam techniques, diagnosis, and treatment plans for diabetes and hypertension. Then, in the afternoon, I stepped back to study interventions that target the obesity epidemic, a root cause of those same disease states. In the 10 years since I graduated with my double master’s, I have reaped the benefit of their combination time and time again. When I’ve interviewed for...
Four Ways Predental Students Can Boost Clinical Hours and Skills During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Four Ways Predental Students Can Boost Clinical Hours and Skills During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Get Started Today 888-839-9997 info@admissionshelpers.com 20 Minutes Free Consultation   Advice from a Practicing Dentist By Dr. Katie D. COVID-19 has shut down dental offices, canceled volunteering events, and hindered previous paths of shadowing and service hours. What’s a pre-dent to do? A silver lining to the pandemic is the innovation and re-interpretation of what this experience is and how to obtain it. Here are four ways you can earn these hours and boost your skills from the comfort and safety of your own home. Virtual Shadowing: There are several players in the virtual shadowing world one year into the pandemic. Here are a few to check out: Instagram @dentalshadowers & @smileshadowers – these accounts are putting together weekly series of dental professionals sharing their stories. They are coordinating with general dentists, specialists, and dental staff members. There are also helpful posts with tips and insight into dentistry. Prehealthshadowing.com is a non-profit organization comprised of a diverse structure of young adults. They have Zoom meetings arranged with dental professionals who will discuss their dental experiences from application to current work environment. These sessions are also recorded and available on YouTube. They offer a Certificate of Verification following completion of a session. The live meetings allow for Q&A and interaction with other interested viewers, networking, and social support. Within their program, they invite interested viewers to contact them for other volunteer opportunities some as research and grant writing. This is a fantastic opportunity to log some volunteer hours as well as shadowing time. Volunteering: With the closure and limited entry available to many dental clinics, your ability to directly volunteer...
Getting Dental Experience as a Predental Student

Getting Dental Experience as a Predental Student

Get Started Today 888-839-9997 info@admissionshelpers.com 20 Minutes Free Consultation   Tips from a Recent Dental School Graduate By Dr. Natalie P As with any career, if you are interested in dentistry, it is most likely a good idea to shadow or observe what the profession entails before you apply.  Below are several ways that you can gain experience in the dental field as well as questions that you may want to ask during your experience. Volunteer at a dental office If you have a dentist that you have been seeing for several years, one of the easiest ways to get an idea of what goes on in a dental practice is to ask them if it is ok to shadow them for a few days. There is value in shadowing a dentist to inquire about both the business aspect of dentistry as well as the procedural aspect. How many people comprise the business, are there associates, how many hygienists, assistants, front desk staff make up the team? What are the various procedures that are conducted on a daily basis and what procedures do they refer to specialists? Is there a good collaboration with the lab for esthetic cases and what lab work is done by the dentist or assistant? Depending on the state, what are the job duties of the assistants? Depending on the state and the rapport that you have with the person you are shadowing, they may allow you to assist on several procedures which would further allow you to get an idea of what is entailed in the field of dentistry. Attend a dental mission In...
What I Wish I Knew Before I Started Dental School

What I Wish I Knew Before I Started Dental School

Get Started Today   20 Minutes Free Consultation   Perspectives of a Recent Dental School Graduate By Dr. Natalie P When I got my acceptance to my top choice dental school, I remember just screaming with excitement. The next several months, I looked into housing, explored things to do in the City of Brotherly Love, and connected with future classmates. I was looking forward to a whole new adventure. The four years of dental school consisted of hard work, some play, and trying to make it through practicals, board exams, and competencies to graduate. There was a lot of information to learn in the first two years, each class instructor conveying large quantities of information that I wasn’t sure I was going to remember. The subsequent two years focused on applying the knowledge we had learned, while fine-tuning our hand skills and perceptual abilities. Looking back on my dental school adventures, here’s some advice I wish I had received before I started: Stay organized and don’t worry about what your classmates are doing:  Dental school is competitive and most of the people who got accepted are driven with a high sense of ambition. So, focus on yourself and what works best for you. How do you best study – by yourself or in a group setting? Do you take copious notes during class? Do you require more “practice” when it comes to the hands-on learning? It is best to not compare yourself with others, be honest with yourself, and take on an approach that works for you. Dentistry requires a lot of hand skills and certainly with practice comes...