Physician Assistant Studies

Program Director: Mary E. Springston (of Physician Assistant Studies)

Associate Professor: William Holmes

Professor of Practice: Rebecca Brown, Raymond A. Jannetti, Elizabeth W. Mercer, Lynn-Beth Satterly, Anthony Vinciquerra

Adjunct Faculty: Jonathan Conlon, Joanne Daprano, Joel P. Delaney, Travis Hayden, Andrea Henson, Susan Jewett, Anne Kukulski, Sherradyn L. Mack, Mallory Manning, Michael Mastroleo, Lisa A. Olsen-Gugerty, Amy Roberson, Susan Sterns, Kristin M. Suchowiecki, Mark J. Suchowiecki

Interim Clinical Coordinator: Edward Wolfe

Assistant Research Coordinator: Patricia Kriegisch Kondapi

Working in an exciting and challenging career, the physician assistant practices medicine under the direction and supervision of a licensed physician. During the intensive training period, the physician assistant studies student becomes competent in such medical skills as history taking, physical assessment, patient management, surgical techniques and laboratory diagnostics. The physician assistant is trained to manage around 80 percent of the problems presenting in outpatient settings. Employment opportunities are excellent nationwide. The physician assistant profession is one of the fastest growing careers in medicine.

The Le Moyne College Master of Science Program in Physician Assistant Studies is dedicated to the education of students to become competent, caring, compassionate and ethical providers of primary health care services. The program seeks to instill in each individual the desire to pursue a lifelong commitment to promote excellence in the delivery of patient care through continual self-assessment and advancement of one’s medical skills and knowledge. The program prepares the student to work in a wide variety of settings, such as hospitals, private primary care facilities, nursing homes and community centers.

The physician assistant studies (PA) curriculum is a 24-month full-time program, divided into 12 months of didactic courses followed by 12 months of supervised clinical practice.

The 12-month clinical curriculum is comprised of rotations in primary care, pediatrics, women’s health care, surgery, emergency medicine, behavioral, geriatric medicine and medical selective and surgery or medicine elective. Emphasis is placed on developing a solid foundation for providing patient care in a variety of primary care and specialty settings.

Accreditation

The Le Moyne College Physician Assistant Studies Program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) and the Education Department of the State of New York. Graduates are eligible to sit for the national certification examination administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants.

Physician Assistant Studies

Admission Criteria

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution
  • Cumulative, science and prerequisite grade-point averages of at least 3.0
  • Completion of prerequisite courses
  • Documentation of quality and quantity of health care experience
  • Successful interview, by invitation
  • Foreign transcripts need to be evaluated by World Education Services (wes.org) and submitted for the CASPA application
  • International students:

    Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of at least 79 or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of 6.5. The following are exceptions:

    • Graduation from an accredited American high school OR
    • Graduation from an American two- or four-year college or university OR
    • Completion of 15 graduate credits at an American college or university OR
    • Completion of 60 undergraduate credits including six transferable credits of English at an American college or university

Prerequisites

  • 750 hours of paid, volunteer or combination hands-on patient care
  • Biology I with lab and Biology II with lab for science majors
  • Four additional advanced-level (200+) biological sciences courses for science majors, two of which must include lab
  • Two semesters of general chemistry with lab for science majors
  • One semester of organic chemistry or biochemistry
  • Two semesters selected from the following: statistics, calculus or physics
  • Two semesters of social science
  • One semester of English composition or technical writing
  • Completion of at least four advanced-level science courses within the last five years
  • Basic computing skills

Admission Options

Post-baccalaureate – For individuals who have already earned a bachelor’s degree or will have earned one by the time the program begins.

Accelerated – A five-year (3+2) B.S./M.S. curriculum with application to the physician assistant studies program in the student’s junior year (available only to Le Moyne students).

Direct entry – For exceptional high school students to accelerate their path to become a P.A. in the five-year (3+2) Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in biological sciences/Master of Science (M.S.) program in physician assistant studies at Le Moyne College.

Student Classifications

Candidates who fulfill the admission requirements are accepted only as full-time degree-seeking students.

Health Clearance

In addition to meeting the immunization requirements of the College, more specific health and immunization requirements must be met prior to participation in any clinical rotations.

Academic Criteria

Graduation Requirements

Successful conclusion of the PA Studies Program requires a minimum G.P.A. of 3.0 and completion of required coursework.

Probation

Physician assistant studies students earning a quality point index of less than 3.0 are placed on academic probation. A student who receives a grade of less than a B for three academic credits will be placed on academic probation. A student who fails any pass/fail course will be put on academic probation.

Termination

The following will result in dismissal from the program:

  • A student who receives a grade of less than B for six academic credit hours.
  • A student who receives a grade of less than a C in the didactic year for a three-credit course (a three-credit course or combination of courses that add up to a total of three credits or more than three credits).
  • A student who is on probation who fails a pass/fail course. A student who has failed two pass/fail courses.

Transfer Credit/Waiver Policy

The Le Moyne College Physician Assistant Studies Program does not grant advanced placement, give credit for or accept transfer of credit for PA Studies courses. Previous health care experience is required, but no course credit is granted for that experience.

The director of the physician assistant studies program has the authority to substitute a prerequisite course if such a substituted course is deemed to cover similar material satisfactorily.

Term Limit for Completion

Physician assistant studies students must complete the program within four years from the date of matriculation.

Withdrawal or Leave of Absence

If a student chooses to withdraw or take a leave of absence from the program, the student must inform their faculty advisor or department chair and follow college policy.

For additional policies specifically related to the Physician Assistant Studies Program, please refer to the Physician Assistant Studies Student Handbook (available at student orientation), or on-line at www.lemoyne.edu/pa.

Physical Assistant Studies (PAS)

PAS 501. Clinical Medicine I. 7 Credit Hours.

This case-based course introduces students to the fundamentals of medical practice, including history taking and physical examination skills. Utilizing a systems approach, it includes a comprehensive study of diseases with emphasis on etiology, pathophysiology, signs and symptoms, diagnostic procedures, and therapeutic measures involved in treating the various medical problems. Various aspects of preventive medicine, patient counseling and education, medical law and ethics, medical economics, physician assistant practice, and other related factors are incorporated. This course is closely integrated with Human Anatomy and Physiology I and Pharmacology I.

Prerequisites: Acceptance into the Physician Assistant Program.

PAS 502. Clinical Medicine II. 7 Credit Hours.

This is a continuation of PAS 501 Clinical Medicine I, and is integrated with Human Anatomy and Physiology II and Pharmacology II.

PAS 503. Clinical Medicine III. 7 Credit Hours.

This is an advanced course in clinical medicine topics with focus on integrating basic sciences, basic medical sciences, and clinical practice. A combination of cases, lectures, and laboratory experiences provide the student with an opportunity to solidify clinical skills, critical thinking skills, self-directed learning, and professional communication skills. Open only to Physician Assistant Studies students. Required for completion of degree.

Prerequisites: Completion of PAS 501 and 502.

Corequisites: PAS 515.

PAS 511. Human Anatomy & Physiology I. 4 Credit Hours.

This course utilizes a systems approach to applied functional human anatomy and physiology. It includes both classroom and lab sessions so that students develop an understanding of the integral workings of the human body. Lab sessions will use models, computer simulated software, and prosecuted human cadavers. Body systems covered include nervous, special sense, endocrine, musculoskeletal, renal, reproductive, respiratory, cardiovascular, and digestive. The order may be rearranged to integrate with Clinical Medicine I and Pharmacology I.

Prerequisites: Acceptance into the Physician Assistant Program.

PAS 512. Human Anatomy & Physiology II. 4 Credit Hours.

This is a continuation of PAS 511 and is integrated with Clinical Medicine II and Pharmacology II. Remaining body systems will be covered through didactic and laboratory sessions and will integrate with Clinical Medicine II and Pharmacology II.

PAS 513. Pharmacology I. 3 Credit Hours.

Medical management of diseases affecting the major body systems will be covered in this course, including the principles of pharmacology as they pertain to therapeutic agents. Students learn the principle mechanisms of action of the major groups of therapeutic agents, absorption, metabolism, distribution, uses, side effects, and toxicities of representative drugs. It is closely integrated with PAS 501 Clinical Medicine I and PAS 511 Anatomy & Physiology I.

Prerequisites: Acceptance into the Physician Assistant Program.

PAS 514. Pharmacology II. 3 Credit Hours.

This is a continuation of PAS 513 Pharmacology I. Medical management of diseases affecting the major body systems will be covered in this course, including the principles of pharmacology as they pertain to therapeutic agents. Students learn the principal mechanisms of action of the major groups of therapeutic agents, absorption, metabolism, distribution, uses, side effects, and toxicties of representative drugs. It is closey integrated with PAS 502 Clinical Medicine II and PAS 512 Anatomy & Physiology II.

PAS 515. Counseling and Public Health. 3 Credit Hours.

This course covers general public health concepts, including health promotion and disease prevention. Patient education, counseling, and intervention strategies are covered. Students explore available community and public health resources relavant to patient needs throughout the lifespan of pediatric, adult, and geriatric populations. Content is based on Healthy People 2010 guidelines.

PAS 516. Physical Diagnosis and Patient Evaluation Laboratory I. 4 Credit Hours.

This course presents the techniques necessary to elicit comprehensive medical histories, perform complete physical examinations, make case presentations, and document patient information. A combination of lectures, discussions, case studies and simulations will be used to present and practice concepts. Each aspect of the course emphasizes the importance of creating a therapeutic and ethically sound relationship with patients and other healthcare professionals. The course integrates material from Clinical Medicine I, Pharmacology I, Human Anatomy and Physiology I and Medical Humanities.

PAS 517. Physical Diagnosis and Patient Evaluation Laboratory II. 4 Credit Hours.

This course presents the techniques necessary to elicit comprehensive as well as focused medical histories, perform complete or focused physical examinations, understand the indications for and evaluation of various ancillary studies, make case presentations, and record various types of patient information, including an introduction to electronic Medical Records systems. A combination of lectures, discussions, case studies and simulations will be used to present and practice concepts. Each aspect of the course emphasizes the importance of creating a therapeutic and ethically sound relationship with patients and other healthcare professionals. The course integrates material from Clinical Medicine II, Pharmacology II, Human Anatomy and Physiology II and Medical Humanities II.

Prerequisite: PAS 516 with a grade of "B" or better.

PAS 518. Physical Diagnosis and Patient Evaluation Laboratory III. 4 Credit Hours.

In the Summer Semester the previously taught skills of obtaining comprehensive or focused medical histories, performing complete or focused physical examinations, performing oral case presentations, documenting various types of patient information are reinforced. Instruction in the special patient populations of Women's Health Care, Geriatric and Pediatric Health Assessment is given. Additionally, emphasis will be placed on Competenecy-based evaluation as the student moves toward clinical rotations through a combination of lectures, discussions, case studies and simulations training. Each aspect of the course emphasizes the importance of creating a therapeutic and ethically sound relationship with patients and other healthcare professionals. The course intergrates material from Clinical Medicine III.

Prerequisite: PAS-516 and PAS-517.

PAS 521. Medical Humanities Seminar I. 3 Credit Hours.

This interdisciplinary seminar is designed to engage students in thinking critically about fundamental ethical, cultural, religious, and social issues concerning health, medical practice, access to health care and public policy. By taking note of the plurality of cultural and social contexts in which medical care and moral discourse about medical care take place, students will explore the values, ideologies, and institutional practices that shape the meanings that health, illness, and acceptable medical practices have for patients and for health care practitioners and that influence medical decision-making and interactions between patients and health care practitioners. Whenever possible, this course will be coordinated with PAS 501 (Clinical Medicine I).

PAS 522. Medical Humanities Seminar II. 3 Credit Hours.

This is a yearlong, interdisciplinary seminar designed to engage students in thinking critically about fundamental ethical, cultural, religious, and social issues concerning health, medical practice, access to health care and public policy. By taking note of the plurality of cultural and social contexts in which medical care and moral discourse about medical care take place, students will explore the values, ideologies, and institutional practices that shape the meanings that health, illness, and acceptable medical practices have for patients and for health care practicioners and that influence medical decision- making and interations between patients and health care practitioners. Course will be coordinated with PAS 502(Clinical Medicine II.).

PAS 600. Orientation to Physician Assistant Prog. 0 Credit Hour.

This course introduces the physician assistant to the history of the profession, role of the physician assistant in the health care team, professional organizations, requirements for licensure (including graduation from an accredited program, certification and recertification requirements), credentialing, professional liability, and general trends in political and legal issues that affect PA practice.

PAS 601. Research Seminar I. 1 Credit Hour.

This course is the first of 5 seminars that will culminate in the completion of a master's project. Working in collaboration with faculty sponsors, students will produce a scholarly work pertaining to the science, practice or profession of physical assistant. Each project must include a review of a relevant scholarly literature, involve the analysis of data, and be conducted by students working in teams of perhaps 3 to 4. Specific topics of investigation will depend on the interests of students and faculty, and on available resources. In this seminar, students will explore their research interests and those of the faculty, and create their project teams. Project teams will then decide upon the questions or problems they wish to investigate, design methods by which to investigate the problems, identify relevant resources, consult with local agencies and experts as necessary, and create inital and updated outlines of project proposals. In addition, students will become familiar with many of the research designs and statistical concepts of evidence-based medicine.

PAS 602. Research Seminar II. 1 Credit Hour.

This course is the second of 5 seminars that will culminate in the completion of a master's project. Working in collaboration with faculty sponsors, students will produce a scholarly work pertaining to the science, practice or profession of physician assistant. Each project must include a review of relevant scholarly literature, involve the analysis of data and be conducted by students working in teams of perhaps 3 to 4. Specific topics of investigation will depend on the interests of students and faculty, and on available resources. In this seminar, project teams will create formal project proposals in which they explain the questions or problems to be investigated and the methodologies to be used, and write drafts of applications for review of research by the College's Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects(IRB). In addition, students will continue their study of the research designs and statistical concepts of evidence-based medicine.

Prerequisites: PAS 601.

PAS 603. Research Seminar III. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is the third of 5 seminars that will culminate in the completion of a master's project. Working in collaboration with faculty sponsors, students will produce a scholarly work pertaining to the science, practice or profession of physician assistant. Each project must include a review of relevant scholarly literature, involve the analysis of data, and be conducted by students working in teams of perhaps 3 to 4. Specific topics of investigation will depend on the interests of students and faculty, and on available resources. In this seminar, project teams will submit to the College's Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects(IRB) applications for review of research, write second drafts of the introduction and methods sections of their master's project reports, and continue their study of medical research designs and statistics.

Prerequisites: PAS 602.

PAS 604. Research Seminar IV. 2 Credit Hours.

This course is the fourth of 5 seminars that will culminate in the completion of a master's project. Working in collaboration with faculty sponsors, students will produce a scholarly work pertaining to the science, practice or profession of physician assistant. Each project must include a review of relevant scholarly literature, involve the analysis of data, and be conducted by students working in teams of perhaps 3 to 4. Specific topics of investigation will depend on the interests of students and faculty, and on available resources. In this seminar, project teams will collect and analyze their project data, and write drafts on the results sections of their project reports. Pass/Fail.

Prerequisites: PAS 603.

PAS 605. Research Seminar V. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is the fifth of 5 seminars that will culminate in the completion of a master's project. Working in collaboration with faculty sponsors, students will produce a scholarly work pertaining to the science, practice or profession of physician assistant. Each project must include a review of relevant scholarly literature, involve the analysis of data, and be conducted by students working in teams of perhaps 3 to 4. Specific topics of investigation will depend on the interests of students and faculty, and on available resources. In this seminar, students will complete their projects, submit final written rports, and present posters of their findings to the college community. Final reports and posters will follow the editorial style of the American Medical Association, and will incorporate explanations of the questions or problems that were investigated, assessments of the current state of knowledge pertinent to the questions or problems, descriptions of the methodologies and data analysis techniques that were used to answer the questions or resolve the problems, and discussions of findings, including summary and implications, recommendations, limitations and conclusions. Pass/Fail.

Prerequisites: PAS 604.

PAS 651. Professional Skills I. 3 Credit Hours.

The series of courses is designed to prepare Physician Assistant students to practice medicine in the current health-care system. The student will address legal and ethical issues as they relate to the health profession; study behavior aspects of medicine, social causes of illness, and preventative medicine; review the medical literature and apply it to a clinical setting; examine insurance, billing and coding issues; and refine the knowledge, skills, and techniques acquired during their clinical rota- tions. Communication skills, professional standards and requirements, advanced clinical topics, health care practice issues, patient response to illness, and other topics encountered in the clinical setting will be discussed. Pass/Fail.

PAS 652. Professional Skills II. 3 Credit Hours.

This series of courses is designed to prepare Physician Assistant students to practice medicine in the current heath-care system. The student will address legal and ethical issues as they relate to the health profession; study behavior aspects of medicine, social causes of illness, and preventative medicine; review the medical literature and apply it to a clinical setting; examine insurance, billing and coding issues; and refine the knowledge, skills, and techniques acquired during their clinical rotations. Communication skills, professional standards and requirements, advanced clinical topics, health care practice issues, patient response to illness, and other topics encountered in the clinical setting will be discussed. Pass/Fail.

PAS 653. Professional Skills III. 3 Credit Hours.

This series of courses is designed to prepare Physician Assistant students to practice medicine in the current health-care system. The student will address legal and ethical issues as they relate to the health profession; study behavior aspects of medicine, social causes of illness, and preventative medicine; review the medical literature and apply it to a clinical setting; examine insurance, billing and coding issues; and refine the knowledge, skills, and techniques acquired during their clinical rotations. Communication skills, professional standards and requirements, advanced clinical topics, health care practice issues, patient response to illness, and other topics encountered in the clinical setting will be discussed. Pass/Fail.

PAS 671. Clinical Rotation I. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 672. Clinical Rotation II. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 673. Clinical Rotation III. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 674. Clinical Rotation IV. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 675. Clinical Rotation V. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 676. Clinical Rotation VI. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 677. Clinical Rotation VII. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.

PAS 678. Clinical Rotation VIII. 3 Credit Hours.

Clinical rotations are six-week rotations spent full time in the clinical setting. Students are assigned to complete rotations such that they acquire clinical experiences that will prepare them to practice as mid-level primary care pro- viders. Students complete rotations in (1) primary care, (2), pediatrics, (3) women's health, (4) geriatrics/behavioral health, (5) surgery, (6) emergency medicine, (7) medicine, (8) elective. Each rotation emphasizes cultural sensitivity, understanding of health in relationship to the predominant culture, and the role of the health care provider in the setting. Pass/fail.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of the first year of the Physician Assistant Studies Program and approval by the Physician Assistant Promotions Committee.