Do you want to learn more about what it means to be a Physician Assistant? Find all the information you are looking for here in this article. This is a tailor-made article for you if you are from Colorado and looking to pursue a career path that allows you to work in a hospital setting. This article will uncover the best PA schools in Colorado where you can acquire your training.
In your career as a physician assistant, you’ll have the task of assisting doctors in carrying out their duties and tasks in hospitals. It is quite a rewarding career that will broaden your knowledge in the medical field. So its a career you’ll need to consider.
Quickly take a look at some of the things you’ll find in this article in the table of contents below.
So let’s delve into the journey.
Who is A Physician Assistant?
A Physician Assistant otherwise known as PA is a trained mid-level healthcare provider who works under the supervision of a licensed medical doctor.
In other words, the term Physician Assistant can be defined precisely as a mid-level practitioner who is able to practice medicine under the supervision of a licensed physician.
Usually, the PA does not need to perform his duties only when the supervising physician is around provided he has been well trained and knows how to discharge his duties appropriately. However, there needs to be a consistent method of contact between the supervising physician and the PA at all times.
What are the duties of A Physician Assistant?
The duties of a Physician Assistant are described according to what specialty they want to focus on or what specialty their supervising physician is focused on.
A physician Assistant who has under the supervision of orthopedic surgeon will definitely have the task of conducting bone surgeries even when the supervising surgeon is not around.
In the same vein, a physician assistant working under a pediatrician will have the responsibility of carrying out what duties the supervising pediatrician does whether he is around or not. These are dependent on the premise that the assistant physician has been properly trained by the mentor.
However, on a general note, Physician Assistants perform the following functions.
What Requirements do I need for PA School?
To be considered for admission into any PA program, it is important that you meet these very important requirements coming in the following lines.
The first level to becoming a physician assistant is the acquisition of a high school certificate with a strong foundation in sciences like; biology, chemistry, physics, English, etc.
Virtually all schools in the US will require the completion of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. This degree requirement is one of the prerequisites for gaining admission into an accredited PA school.
Some schools require a GRE and GPA but some do not really consider it.
Furthermore, in your walk to become a physician assistant, you must complete an ARC-PA accredited master’s program. This is one of the requirements you must meet to have a swell time as a physician assistant.
After completing a PA program, you’ll take the PANCE to earn certification as a physician assistant, then seek licensure from your state in order to begin practicing.
How long does it take to complete a PA program?
To become a certified physician assistant, one needs to complete something around 8 years of training. The 8 years here are spent in learning various skills that are required to fully become a PA.
Firstly, one must earn a bachelor’s degree, which takes roughly four years to complete. This means that you must have also completed your high school education with relatively good grades.
The bachelor’s degree which you must have could be in any course at all provided it is related to the medical profession.
Acquiring a bachelor’s degree alone does not qualify you to become a Physician Assistant. You’ll need to get health training which will further widen your knowledge in health care. The health care training could be in the area of paramedics or any other medical-related course. Usually, this training takes about three years to complete.
After you have completed the health care training, the next thing will be to acquire a master’s degree. The master’s program does not take so much time to complete. On average, it will cost you like two years to complete a master’s degree program which leads to a career as a Physician Assistant.
One more thing will be left for you to do after your master’s degree. That is sitting for the Accreditation test. Only those who graduate from the ARC-PA program (the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant) can qualify to write this test.
One can attempt this test up to 6 times in a span of 6 years after which he will need to wait for some time before trying again.
In addition, a person who has completed all the rigors and has been licensed to practice as a physician assistant will still need to take council exams periodically to maintain their licensure.
What schools offer Physician Assistant Programs?
There are only four notable schools in the whole of Colorado that offers Physician Assistant programs. So, if you live in Colorado and you are looking to enroll in PA school soon, here is a list of PA schools where you can pursue PA programs in Colorado.
Explore here below.
List of Best PA Schools in Colorado
Let us look at the schools more closely.
#1. Colorado State University
Colorado State University is one of the top PA schools in Colorado. The school over the years has provided thorough training for students pursuing careers as Physician Assistants.
The Colorado State University provides one of the most rigorous PA programs in Colorado for students.
The mission of the Physician Assistant Program at this school is to provide comprehensive physician assistant education in primary care across the lifespan, with expanded training in pediatrics and care of the medically underserved.
#2. Colorado Mesa University
Colorado Mesa University provides one of the best PA programs in Colorado. The CMU PA Program is designed to offer a student-centered curriculum that has a unique emphasis on training compassionate and competent PAs.
The program places emphasis on wellness promotion and disease prevention for the individual patient and the community.
The program is a rigorous 27-month (2 years and 3 months), full-time, on-campus program consisting of 112 credits.
The CMU PA Program curriculum is designed to educate future clinicians with the knowledge and skills to be agents of excellence and innovation in the delivery of quality healthcare to the communities of Western Colorado and beyond.
Take a quick flight to the school.
#3. Red Rocks Community College
The Red Rocks Physician Assistant Program is a rigorous 27-month, state-sponsored, nationally accredited program.
As one of the schools on our list of best PA schools in Colorado, the RRCC PA program was the first community college in the US to confer its own master’s degree.
Graduates of the RRCC PA program have usually been conferred a Master’s in Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS). The RRCC PA program has a long history of educating competent, community-minded PAs to practice primary care.
Graduates at RRCC receive exceptional training and are prepared to enter clinical practice upon graduation.
Accepted students can find their path in careers such as nursing, physical therapy, emergency services, exercise physiology, medical assisting, radiographic technology, respiratory therapy, and audiology, among many others.
Interestingly, the RRCC PA Program accepts 32 students per year allowing for closer relationships with the lecturers.
#4. Rocky Vista University
Rocky Vista University is another PA school with the best PA programs in Colorado.
The mission of the Rocky Vista Physician Assistant Program is to prepare clinically competent, collaborative, and compassionate physician assistants to provide primary care.
The RVU PA program provides educational experiences to support student development of requisite knowledge, skills, and attitudes corresponding with competence in each of the EPAs.
The school has been fully accredited by The ARC-PA.
PA schools in Colorado without GRE
GRE has been the nightmare of most students desiring to pursue a career as Physician Assistants. This is because of how rigorous the exam is.
If you want to become a physician assistant but you don’t want to write the GRE, there is only one school in the whole of Colorado that does not require you to write or present GRE.
If you do not want to write a GRE before getting into the PA school, Colorado Mesa University is the only university and apparently the only PA school in Colorado that does not require a GRE.
Visit the school here below.
PA schools in Colorado with low GPA
If you are looking to enroll in a PA school in Colorado but you are looking for a school with a low GPA requirement, it’s sad, the truth is that all the PA schools in Colorado require GPA above average.
The minimum GPA required to be admitted into Colorado PA schools is 2.8. This is quite above average. So you there is actually no PA school in Colorado that accepts a low GPA.
Frequently Asked Questions on Best PA schools in Colorado
How much does a PA make in Colorado?
The average salary for a Physician Assistant in Colorado is $102,334.
What is the job outlook of Physician Assistants in Colorado?
Irrespective of the fact that the PA career is very competitive, the demand continues to grow in Colorado.
Recent statistics released by the United States Department of Labor show that the number of physician assistants working in Colorado will shoot up from 2, 020 in 2012 to 2,830 by 2022.
This is about a 40% increase rate and it is quite exciting news for physician assistants since it will create nearly 120 annual job openings during this ten-year period.
Interestingly, a career as a physician assistant is one of Colorado’s top fifty fastest-growing occupations through 2022.
How much does a Colorado medical license cost?
The Colorado Medical Board charges a non-refundable application processing fee of $569.
What is the average GPA for PA school applicants?
The average GPA to be considered for into pa schools in Colorado is 2.8 on a 4.0 scale.
Pursuing a career as a physician assistant is a very demanding but lucrative one. You’ll get to spend so much time in school completing your training. It takes about 6 years without healthcare training while it takes 9 years plus with healthcare training.
But is it really worth all the stress? I think it is worth all the stress and even more! An average salary of $102,334 isn’t just huge but promising that more will come. Additionally, you’ll get to work with the specialists in your chosen specialty.
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