PA Profession’s 50th Anniversary Marked by Growth, Widespread Acceptance

Number of Certified PAs increased 44 percent in six years

JOHNS CREEK, Ga.--()--Fifty years after the first three PAs graduated from Duke University, Certified PAs are key providers in the healthcare delivery system, practicing medicine and surgery in every state, specialty and clinical setting. The most comprehensive data available has just been published in the 2016 Statistical Profile of Certified Physician Assistants. With input from over 94 percent of Certified PAs, the profile shows:

  • Over 70 percent of PAs work in specialties outside primary care, including in highly technical surgical specialties, emergency medicine and hospital medicine.
  • A shift from the early years when the profession consisting of former military medics was all male to a population of Certified PAs that is now 67 percent female.
  • The states with the largest number of PAs are New York, California, Texas, Pennsylvania and Florida. However, three of the top five states with the largest number of PAs per capita are Alaska, South Dakota and Montana, indicating that Certified PAs often fill the void for healthcare in rural areas.
  • Certified PAs earn an average salary of over $104,000, with the highest paid to those in pathology, dermatology, surgical subspecialties and critical care medicine.

The report, released by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA), is the most comprehensive data available on PA practice, with profile information compiled from over 101,000 Certified PAs.

“As a profession, we are 50 years young,” says Dawn Morton-Rias, Ed.D., PA-C, president and CEO of NCCPA. “We have made historic strides, and the future is brighter than ever. The profession is young (average age of PAs is 38) and the demand for well qualified providers is expanding. Certified PAs contribute greatly to the value-based care model and offer a solution to the nation’s need to provide access to care at a sustainable cost. I am proud to be a PA-C.”

About the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants

The National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) is the only certifying organization for physician assistants (PAs) in the United States. The PA-C credential is awarded by NCCPA to PAs who fulfill certification, certification maintenance and recertification requirements. There are more than 115,500 Certified PAs in the U.S. today. NCCPA also administers the Certificate of Added Qualifications (CAQ) program for experienced, Certified PAs practicing in seven specialties. For more information, visit www.PAsDoThat.net.

Contacts

NCCPA
Mary Rittle, Director of Communications
maryr@nccpa.net
678-417-8142

Release Summary

The National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) announces the 50th anniversary of the PA profession has been marked by growth, as reported in the 2016 Statistical Profile.

Contacts

NCCPA
Mary Rittle, Director of Communications
maryr@nccpa.net
678-417-8142