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Physician Assistant

Graduate Competencies

Expected Functions and Tasks for Graduates of the RIT Physician Assistant Program

Graduates will demonstrate profiency at performing the following skills, tasks and procedures when working with male and female patients across the life spectrum of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds with varying degrees of medical acuity, in a wide variety of medical settings. These settings include but are not limited to office-based practices, inpatient facilities and long-term care settings in urban, suburban and rural communities:

  1. Demonstrate ability to properly triage patients with potentially life-threatening injuries or illnesses and the ability to initiate appropriate care
  2. Demonstrate good interpersonal communication skills and the ability to develop an appropriate and professional rapport with patients, families and other healthcare workers
  3. Obtain a comprehensive history, eliciting information pertinent to the development of a diagnosis.  Each history will contain the following elements:
  4. Chief complaint
  5. History of present illness
  6. Past medical history
  7. Family history
  8. Social history
  9. Review of systems
  10. Perform a comprehensive physical examination
  11. Obtain a problem focused history when appropriate
  12. Perform a problem focused physical examination when appropriate
  13. Differentiate between normal and abnormal physical exam findings
  14. Order and interpret appropriate laboratory and diagnostic studies
  15. Critically analyze history, physical examination and diagnostic study findings to formulate an accurate assessment and demonstrate medical decision making skills in the formulation of a treatment plan
  16. Organize and document all patient data in written form to ensure the establishment of an accurate record compliant with all medical/legal standards
  17. Deliver concise oral presentations (using either bullet or formal format) which accurately summarize pertinent patient data
  18. Discuss the risks, benefits, associated with various diagnostic studies, treatment referrals and medication choices
  19. Discuss and demonstrate profiency in the use of evidence based medicine in medical decision making
  20. Determine when additional intervention is needed and facilitate medical referrals and/or access to allied health providers (i.e. physician specialist, physical therapy, social work, hospice care, psychotherapy, etc.)
  21. Educate and instruct the patient regarding symptoms, physical examination findings, assessment and treatment plan recommendations, including verification that the patient clearly understands all discharge instructions
  22. Counsel patients regarding normal development and aging patterns as well as health maintenance, disease prevention, screening techniques, immunizations, and the risks/benefits of various lifestyle choices.
  23. Demonstrate the ability to follow Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards in clinical practice.
  24. Demonstrate knowledge of NY State guidelines regarding the recognition of child abuse and the physician assistant’s role as a mandated reporter
  25. Maintain CPR/ACLS certification during the clinical component of the student’s education
  26. Demonstrate professional integrity, honesty, dependability, respect for self and others, compassion, and an ability to protect patient confidentiality and trust.
  27. Demonstrate commitment to the ideals of life-long learning, professional excellence, teamwork, and tolerance for diversity and community service.
  28. Recognize and comply with the accepted standards within the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability (HIPAA) Act of 1996.
  29. Perform the following medical procedures with proper supervision:
    1. Perform a pelvic exam including proper speculum, PAP smear and culture technique
    2. Demonstrate digital rectal exam and the ability to test stool for occult blood using guaiac cards
    3. Demonstrate proper breast exam technique and the ability to instruct the patient regarding self-breast exam
    4. Demonstrate proper testicular exam technique and the ability to instruct the patient regarding self-testicular exam
    5. Test visual acuity using a Snellen chart
    6. Perform a venipuncture
    7. Perform an arterial puncture
    8. Start an IV
    9. Obtain stool, urine, sputum, throat or wound drainage specimen for culture
    10. Perform injections including subcutaneous, intradermal, intravenous and intramuscular
    11. Interpret intradermal skin test
    12. Insert a nasogastric tube
    13. Obtain and interpret an electrocardiogram
    14. Analyze spirometry readings
    15. Demonstrate proper technique for a lumbar puncture
    16. Insert and remove a Foley catheter
    17. Demonstrate proper technique for a thoracentesis
    18. Demonstrate proper technique for a paracentesis
    19. Demonstrate the ability to utilize OSHA recommended Universal Precautions
    20. Demonstrate the ability to use aseptic technique and the ability to establish a sterile field
    21. Demonstrate proper wound care including skin closure using various suturing techniques
    22. Apply casts and splints using proper materials and techniques
    23. Demonstrate the ability to determine when supplemental oxygen is required by a patient and the factors which must be considered when determining the best delivery method and rate of flow
    24. Demonstrate competency in the interpretation of plain radiographs of the chest, abdomen, spine and extremities
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