Physician Assistant Program - Southwest Florida

Curriculum

Overview

The entry-level physician assistant program at NSU in Southwest Florida, leading to a Master of Medical Science (MMS) degree, is a fully integrated program encompassing masters level work as well as clinical knowledge and skills. All students must complete all courses within the entire curriculum, regardless of their previous educational preparation. All course work must be completed at this campus.

The PA-S(1): Academic Education (14.5 months)

The first year (4 terms over 14.5 months) consists of intensive, didactic classroom and laboratory education. This educational process is designed to give the student practical and useful information to begin the practice of medicine with the supervision of a physician. The courses of study are required PRIOR to beginning the clinical education phase.

(Note: We understand that many applicants have completed similar courses in other institutions. No course exemptions for previous course work completed prior to admission will be considered. The curriculum is subject to change and /or modification at any time).

The course of study in the didactic/academic 14.5 months includes Gross Anatomy, Physiology, Physical Diagnosis, Clinical Pathophysiology, History Taking & Communication Skills, Introduction to the PA Profession, Cultural Issues in Healthcare, PA & Health Care Dynamics, Microbiology, Fundamentals of Medical Imaging, Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care, Pharmacology, Clinical Medicine and Surgery (a multi discipline of all medicine and surgery), Clinical Laboratory Medicine, Social and Behavioral Sciences & Psychiatry, Electrocardiography, Health Promotion & Disease Prevention, Complementary Medicine & Nutrition, Life Support Skills and Procedures, Clinical Procedures and Surgical Skills, Interpretation and Evaluation of the Medical Literature, Clinical Pharmacology, Domestic Violence training, OSHA "Blood borne Pathogen" training, "Prevention of Medical Errors" training, Clinical Year Preparation seminars, and training in the use of the One45 clinical tracking software.

The PA-S(2): Clinical Education (12.5 months)

The second year consists of clinical rotations in hospitals, private practices, and other patient care areas over the remaining 12.5 months of the program. Students must complete 6-week required rotations in family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, prenatal care & gynecology, emergency medicine and surgery. These required rotations must be completed within the state of Florida, most often within an 80-100 mile radius of the program. Students will also complete two (2) 6-week and one (1) four-week elective rotation in concentrations of their choice. Each student should expect to complete at least one rotation during the clinical year in a rural or underserved area.

During the second year, students are required to return to campus after each rotation. These "End of Rotation" events include testing, review seminars, job preparation and didactic instruction in contemporary clinical medicine and surgery topics.

Also during the second year, students are required to complete a graduate project. This project is a scholarly paper suitable for publication consisting of either results of original research or literature review and evaluation, which will be presented to the college during the final clinical rotation.