News

  • 23 Sep 2016 9:19 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    NCCPA Revises Potential Changes to the PA Recertification Exam

    September 19, 2016

    NCCPA advised AAPA, PAEA and ARC-PA at our meeting in Atlanta on September 6 that it is considering an alternative to its previous proposal for recertification testing. NCCPA did not ask the organizations present to endorse its proposal, nor did we offer to do so. We – AAPA, PAEA and ARC-PA – agreed to give NCCPA time to make an official announcement to the PA community before reaching out to our respective stakeholders. NCCPA distributed the alternative they are currently considering by email to PAs on September 9. Over the coming weeks, AAPA’s board will evaluate the new NCCPA proposal in light of AAPA policy, the views of our constituent organizations (COs) and those of individual PAs.

    Click here to read more.

  • 23 Sep 2016 9:01 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The only clinic in one of the nation's busiest commercial fishing ports is so remote that even conventional telemedicine for emergencies has been impossible for its limited staff — until this week.

    Starting Thursday, a new partnership with an Anchorage hospital will virtually beam critical care doctors 800 miles (1,287 kilometers) away to the emergency room on the island that holds Dutch Harbor, the operations base for the Bering Sea crabbing fleet made famous by the Discovery Channel show "Deadliest Catch."

    Click here to read more.


  • 02 Aug 2016 8:44 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    The Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center has returned to its former status as a leading public health clinic, hiring about a dozen new medical staff, eliminating a long waiting list and accepting new patients, says its chief executive officer, Tammy Green.

    Green started her job as the head of the neighborhood health center last June, a time when the Midtown health center had a waiting list with more than 2,000 names on it. It had closed its doors to most new patients and, at its lowest, its staff had dwindled to six medical providers. The health center's mission is to treat any patient regardless of ability to pay, but without enough staff it had to start refusing service.

    Click here to read the whole article. 


  • 21 Jul 2016 10:16 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    At its July meeting, the AAPA Board of Directors unanimously voted to take the following action: 

    “AAPA will take the next steps toward establishing a new certifying organization by gathering more information and developing the necessary documents. “

    “The changes to the recertification process proposed by NCCPA would have such a significant detrimental impact on PA practice and patient access to care that the AAPA Board decided it would be prudent to begin the work necessary to establish a new certifying body,” said AAPA President and Board Chair Josanne Pagel, MPAS, PA-C, Karuna®RMT, DFAAPA.  “Of course, we continue to hope that NCCPA will accept our invitation, which was extended after the May HOD meeting and again after our most recent Board meeting, to discuss its recertification exam proposal with us directly, board-to-board.” 

    Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to our CEO, Jenna Dorn (jdorn@aapa.org or 571.319.4301), BOD Chair Josanne Pagel (jpagel@aapa.org) or HOD Speaker David Jackson (djackson@aapa.org).

    It is important to understand, and to communicate to PAs who ask, the following information: 

    • This Board action is the next step in exploring and gathering information about establishing a new certifying body.  It will be a thorough and thoughtful process.
    • This announcement in no way changes the current CME, certification or recertification, process -- PAs should continue to prepare for and comply with NCCPA's requirements.
    • More information about why AAPA believes NCCPA's proposed changes will be detrimental to PAs and the profession can be found on the AAPA News Center: http://news-center.aapa.org/

    Please feel free to share this information with your delegations.  Due to the transition from one leadership year to the next, we want to be confident all HOD delegates are informed of this Board action.   

    Sincerely,                                                         

    Josanne K. Pagel, MPAS, PA-C, Karuna®RMT, DFAAPA
    President and Chair, Board of Directors

    David I. Jackson, DHSc, PA-C, DFAAPA
    Speaker, House of Delegates

  • 21 Jul 2016 10:05 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    (Submitted by Sr. HOD Rep Sarah Bigelow, PA-C)

    Once again, Casey and I enjoyed our time at the AAPA House of Delegates.  The 2016 IMPACT conference was hosted by the beautiful city of San Antonio, Texas and they lived up to their reputation by doing everything big!  A warm welcoming ceremony featured  Navy SEAL to PA to movie consultant and "American Sniper" actor, Kevin "Dauber" Lacz, PA-C, who knows what it means to go for – and get – what you want in life. As one of two keynote speakers he shared his experiences about why it is important to take, mitigate and overcome risks to achieve your goals as a leader and as a team member.  The second speaker, Terry Stone, the Managing Director of Oliver Wyman's Health & Life Sciences practice group, focused her unique insights on translating the healthcare trends of tomorrow into today's transformational healthcare strategies. Terry has extensive experience in the healthcare industry and gave us a view of what is on the horizon and the important role PAs have in healthcare today and in shaping its future.

    After three days of discussion and testimony on various recommendations the house came together to vote on the recommendations presented by the reference committees.  Although most resolutions presented were accepted for the consent agenda, covering topics from PA license portability to the opioid abuse crisis to medical marijuana laws, a few were extracted for further debate.  Two of the extracted resolutions passed will have particular importance on the future of the profession – one relates to the NCCPAs proposed changes to the recertification process of PAs and second revised the AAPA guidelines for state regulation of PAs.  Many states echoed concerns expressed to the NCCPA proposal to the recertification process.  Please refer to resolution B-01.  Delegates approved the guideline revision that encouraged states to allow “PA scope of practice to be determined by the PAs education and experience, rather than physician delegation; repeal the concept that physicians should be responsible for PA-provided care; replace references to physician “supervision” with “collaboration”; and authorize state constituent organizations to pursue even more progressive provisions that would increase PA practice authority, should that opportunity arise.  Please refer resolution C-02 and policy HP 3500.3.4

    As we sadly bid farewell to our Speaker of the House, Gail Curtis, who was honored with a special resolution and thank you, we elected new House officers and members to the Nominating Work Groups.  New elected members can be viewed on the AAPA website.

    Click here for a summary of actions for 2016 HOD.  If you have not been following the discussions between the AAPA and NCCPA we encourage you to take a few moments and review the material.  Information can be found on both the AAPA and NCCPA websites. 

    Again, thank you for the opportunity to serve as your HOD representatives.  We hope you are enjoying the amazing Alaskan summer and look forward to seeing you this October in Fairbanks at the All Alaska Medical Conference.

    Thank you,

    Sarah Bigelow, PA-C and Casey Schanz, PA-C

  • 21 Jul 2016 10:00 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    Physician assistants, often considered primary care professionals, are entering more specialty fields including surgery and emergency medicine amid a nationwide doctor shortage, according to a new report.

    More than 70% of physician assistants now work in “non-primary care specialties,”  according to the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants in its annual profile of the PA profession.

    To read the complete article from Forbes, click here

  • 19 May 2016 10:15 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    The AKAPA would like to congratulate the MEDEX Northwest Anchorage site for being a PA Foundation IMPACT Grant Recipient!

    Kari Bernard, PA-C, Alaska Health Fair Inc.
    Grant Amount:  $2,500
    Project Name:  Hosting a Health Fair for a Homeless Population in Alaska
    Project Description:
    The University of Washington PA students chosen to matriculate into the Anchorage class each have a strong connection to the state of Alaska, and most have plans to remain in state to practice. Built into the didactic curriculum is exposure to underserved Alaskan populations, most notably those without adequate housing who are at great risk for poor health outcomes. Every winter, the didactic class partners with Brother Francis Shelter and Alaska Health Fair Inc to host a health fair for the homeless. PA students provide education aimed at maintaining health on the streets. A hematology and chemistry lab panel is also drawn on fair participants and when the results are back, volunteers at the shelter-based clinic help patients interpret the results and assist with referral to providers as needed. 

    To view the full list of recipients click here

  • 29 Apr 2016 9:28 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    The current edition of the Veterans Caucus Newsletter, dated Apr 2016, is now available here or on the Veterans Caucus website for your review. 

  • 21 Dec 2015 9:23 AM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)
    Great article in support of PAs and NPs- also addressing when to see a doc and when to see a PA or NP. Great practical info for inquiring patients.

    Let’s say you hurt your knee doing your best Tom Brady impression playing flag football.

    It hurts like the dickens and you’re not sure if you tore something or just have a really bad case of tendonitis. You go to your local urgent care clinic, or doctor’s office, and you’re seen by a physician assistant  (PA), who examines you, says everything is structurally intact, and you should use ice, elevate your leg and take some ibuprofen for the pain.

    What the PA said makes sense, but shouldn’t you see — you know — the doctor?

    Read the complete article here: http://commonhealth.wbur.org/2015/12/pa-np-care

  • 14 Oct 2015 1:25 PM | Jenny Thomasson (Administrator)

    According to Glassdoor, being a physician assistant is the best job in America right now!

    Read more here



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