“General practice is changing and is facing both a recruitment crisis and increasing workload. Physician Associates provides an additional resource to help practices meet these challenges.”
Dr Peter Dixon, Medeconomics July 2017
Physician associates (PAs) are a relatively new member of the clinical team, seen as complementary to GPs rather than a substitute. Commitments in The 2016 General Practice Forward View included an aim to recruit 1000 physician associates into general practice. Following appropriate legislation, PAs will be regulated by the GMC.
For resources describing the role of PAs see:
- Health Careers website
- You Tube case studies and A day in the life of a physician associate in general practice
- Physical Associates a working solution for GP from HEE.
The Royal College of Physicians has worked with the Faculty of Physician Associates to develop CPD-approved training for PAs. For the latest workshop dates see the RCP website.
The Faculty of Physician Associates (FPA) provides professional support to physician associates across the UK. The FPA reviews and sets standards for:
- the education and training of physician associates
- accreditation of university programmes and
- physician associate national certification and recertification examinations.
The FPA manage the Physician Associate Managed Voluntary Register (PAMVR) of fully qualified physician associates who have been declared fit to practise in the UK.
Information for employers
The Faculty of Physician Associates (FPA) have developed a dedicated PAs in GP website to help support GPs/practice managers who are either thinking of employing or have recently taken on a PA and inform the wider primary care system. This website has a variety of information with downloadable templates and answers to FAQs including an employer’s guide to physician associates.
The FPA recommend that employers only consider recruiting physician associates who are registered on the Physician Associate Managed Voluntary Register (PAMVR). The PAMVR is held exclusively by the Faculty of Physician Associates (FPA), and allows employers to check whether an applicant or employee is a fully qualified and approved physician associate.
Last updated: 27 November, 2020