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Physician updating records on an iPad.

PA Career Outlook

Overview of the PA Profession

According to the American Academy of PAs, “PAs are medical professionals who diagnose illness, develop and manage treatment plans, prescribe medications, and often serve as a patient’s principal healthcare provider ... PAs practice in every state and in every medical setting and specialty, improving healthcare access and quality.”

Along with nurse practitioners, PAs are advanced practice providers who participate on collaborative healthcare teams and are often responsible for a patient’s primary care.

Generally awarding a master's-level degree, PA programs in the U.S. are accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). The Market Demand Report and Feasibility Study conducted by the University provided extensive data related to PA career growth projections, PA program competitors, and enrollment potential.

  • PA profession is projected to grow 31% from 2019 to 2029.
  • Conferrals of PA degrees have increased an average of 10% annually between 2012 and 2016. There were 7,682 degrees conferred nationwide in 2016.
Physician Assistant giving a baby a checkup