What does a Physician Assistant do?
Provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. Conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients. May, in some cases, prescribe medication. Must graduate from an accredited educational program for physician assistants.
- Examine patients to obtain information about their physical condition.
- Interpret diagnostic test results for deviations from normal.
- Make tentative diagnoses and decisions about management and treatment of patients.
- Obtain, compile and record patient medical data, including health history, progress notes and results of physical examination.
- Administer or order diagnostic tests, such as x-ray, electrocardiogram, and laboratory tests.
- Prescribe therapy or medication with physician approval.
- Perform therapeutic procedures, such as injections, immunizations, suturing and wound care, and infection management.
- Instruct and counsel patients about prescribed therapeutic regimens, normal growth and development, family planning, emotional problems of daily living, and health maintenance.
- Provide physicians with assistance during surgery or complicated medical procedures.
- Supervise and coordinate activities of technicians and technical assistants.
- Visit and observe patients on hospital rounds or house calls, updating charts, ordering therapy, and reporting back to physician.
- Order medical and laboratory supplies and equipment.