SJVC’s Physician Assistant program prepares students to work as health professionals and to practice medicine under the supervision of a licensed physician. Students learn to collect and evaluate medical data and participate in the process of clinical decision–making. Graduates are prepared to provide diagnosis and therapeutic management as it relates to their patients and their position in the health care field.
Throughout SJVC’s Physician Assistant program, students will learn how to:
- • Conduct physical examinations
- • Order & interpret laboratory tests
- • Diagnose patients
- • Determine treatment plans
- • Counsel patients
Graduates will earn an Associate of Science degree, and can do so in approximately 24 months.
Graduates are eligible to take the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE) administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). PANCE is the initial exam required to become a certified Physician Assistant (PA). A credentialed PA is recognized by the Physician Assistant Board as being academically and clinically prepared to provide health care services with the direction and responsible supervision of a doctor of medicine or osteopathy.
Within the physician-PA relationship, physician assistants make clinical decisions and provide a broad range of diagnostic, therapeutic, preventive and health maintenance services. The clinical role of PAs includes primary and specialty care in medical and surgical practice settings. PA practice is centered on patient care and may include educational, research and administrative activities.
Physician Assistant practice specialties range from Family Medicine to Neurosurgery. Physician Assistants work in:
- • Rural ambulatory clinics
- • Community hospitals
- • Solo & group practices
- • Veteran & military facilities
- • Academic teaching hospitals
- • Urban emergency rooms
The Physician Assistant program is available in:
- • Visalia
The Physician Assistant Program is divided into three consecutive phases of instruction over the period of two years, and is accredited by ARC-PA. The program carries an intense workload and it is recommended that students do not work while completing their studies. As students start their clinical coursework, schedules are determined by the clinical site. Students are expected to be on clinical rotations a minimum of 128 hours per month. No special concessions are granted for working students. Upon successful completion of all 96 units of coursework, an A.S. degree is awarded.
Mission of the Physician Assistant Program
The mission of SJVC’s Physician Assistant program is to educate and train students to become primary care physician assistants. The program aims to improve health care for rural, multi-cultural and underserved populations of the California Central Valley.
- • Provide education and training in primary care medicine to students who are interested in becoming physician assistants
- • Add to the supply of primary care services in rural communities
- • Increase careers in the health care professions for members of rural, disadvantaged groups
- • Contribute knowledge, expertise and service to the community
View more information on SJVC’s Physician Assistant program’s accreditation, continuing education, Board Pass Rates and tuition.
If a Physician Assistant degree sounds like the opportunity you’ve been looking for, please complete SJVC’s Request Information form. An Admissions Advisor will contact you soon to discuss how you can reach your career goals with SJVC.