Just a note on the NP vs PA debate... - page 5

I did not want to fuel this debate. In fact, I hadn't realized there was this much NP-PA hostility until I found this board. Honestly, I think it a trivial debate in the grand scheme of things....... Read More

  1. by   foxyhill21
    I am so tried of hearing about the NP vs. PA or NP vs. MD. If u want to be a PA just do it!!! If you want to be a MD just do it!!! If you want to be a NP just do it!!! In every profession you are going to found some pros and cons. So who cares which profession that people think is higher or better. It is all about YYOOUU, what ever your heart desires, do what u love the most. IT is too many people working at places b/e of the$$$. Do something in life that u like. Do not allow the world to choose your destiny, CHOOSE YOUR OWN destiny. Life is too short to be worried about minor issues as this. Every profession is wonderful as long as the person enjoys what they do.
  2. by   Danielle4
    Quote from FNP/DNP
    I am an NP, but having spent some time on the PA forum have gotten some good education about their profession. First of all-not anyone can be a PA- those are very competitive programs to enter, harder to get into than NP programs. PA's have excellent training and many PA's work independently, with physcians cosigning charts just like we do. This debate is senseless.
    We have more similarities than differences.
    ___________________________________________

    I just wanted to say thank you to FNP/DNP for recognizing that PA's work hard too as that is not the mood I am getting from this website.

    I admire all healthcare professions as I have worked as a medical assistant under a doctor and an RN whom I admired for 3 years and I also have worked as a medical technologist in a lab as well and have had a lot of contact with nurses. I also have 2 sister-in-laws who are very good nurses. My mother is also a nurse whom I admire very much.

    I just wanted to mention that in AZ where I live there are only 2 PA schools and both of them are master's degree programs. I just wanted to get that out so that people would not think that PA's are just assistants they are at the same level with an NP (as far as being considered midlevel). I also agree with anydim in that perhaps PA's do have a strong education and RN's do have strong experience behind them, but both I believe have an important role in medicine. I know I am not trying to compare fields I don't believe that one can compare the two jobs besides the fact they are both midlevel practitioners they are not the same at all. In fact one of them practices medicine and diagnosing and the other doesn't. One of the professions treats patients when they are already sick and the other treats patients and prevents them from getting sick. What I mean to say is they are BOTH important and DIFFERENT fields. It is not an issue of assisting anyone. PA's do not want to be doctors and they don't want to ge NP's they are a career that is separate from both.

    When I was in school and I got my Bachelors in Biololgy one of the required classes in my school was physics and it was a common weed out course and many of the people at my school went into nursing when they could not pass physics because nursing did not require it. The school I went to is one of the best in the state for nursing so they had their hard classes too I am sure! Please don't miss understand me by thinking that I mean nursing is the easier route, but I wanted to mention this because the whole mood of this forum seems to be degrading the PA and I just wanted to illustrate that the PA route is a hard route too. You all know how hard it is to be a student. PA and NP both start out as students alike and I just wanted to point out that both fields have their difficulties even though they are all different difficulties that they both face.

    I just wanted also to mention that PA's in the state of AZ are required to do CME's and recertify every 6 years just as NP's do CME's so do PA's.

    I am not in the medical field to "compete" with anyone. I am in the medical field to help people in the way that I can with what I do best. However, I do think the competativeness sort of a good thing because it forces PA'a and NP's alike to both give the best care to the patient as we both keep each other on our toes! I want to give credit to both professions for that.

    I also wanted to mention since I feel I have to defend the PA route a little on this website that there are only 2 schools that offer the PA and their are SEVERAL nursing schools so it is really hard to get into PA school as opposed to nursing school in my state. I have 6000 hours of clinical experience, volunteer experience and a high GPA to get into the program and the competativeness of getting into PA school is really difficult. When there are less seats to apply to it makes it harder...not comparing nursing to PA school, but the less people that will make it in makes it competative. If there were more PA schools maybe it would be easier to get in. Mainly I just wanted to mention this in hope that all of you nurses would PLEASE respect the PA's too becasue they deserve it as much as you do!

    I also wanted to mention. Someone else mentioned that PA have to practice while a doctor is in the building. This is not true a PA has their own patients and it is up to the doctor if he wants to review the charts or not. The doctor can give his PA as much freedom as he feels he wants to and not all PA's have every single chart reviewed. A PA only has to have the ability to contact the doctor by pager, or telephone they do not have to be "in the building". Many PA's function as primary care providers in rural areas as well.

    I repect both nurses and PA's because I believe they are both important careers in the medical field. I just wish their was not so much anamocity between fields because I know both fields could learn a lot from each other and work really well together.

    Anyway, again I want the thank all of you nurses who support the PA profession. I admire all of you.
    Thank you!!!!
  3. by   Danielle4
    As you probaby guessed I am a PA student. I just had to say something because I don't want anyone degrading the profession I have closen either. I am a student and it sort of hurts my feelings that some of the nurses don't think my profession is a noble one. Anyway, I really admire you nurses that do. Thank you again!
  4. by   cgfnp
    Quote from Danielle4
    ___________________________________________

    I just wanted to say thank you to FNP/DNP for recognizing that PA's work hard too as that is not the mood I am getting from this website.

    I admire all healthcare professions as I have worked as a medical assistant under a doctor and an RN whom I admired for 3 years and I also have worked as a medical technologist in a lab as well and have had a lot of contact with nurses. I also have 2 sister-in-laws who are very good nurses. My mother is also a nurse whom I admire very much.

    I just wanted to mention that in AZ where I live there are only 2 PA schools and both of them are master's degree programs. I just wanted to get that out so that people would not think that PA's are just assistants they are at the same level with an NP (as far as being considered midlevel). I also agree with anydim in that perhaps PA's do have a strong education and RN's do have strong experience behind them, but both I believe have an important role in medicine. I know I am not trying to compare fields I don't believe that one can compare the two jobs besides the fact they are both midlevel practitioners they are not the same at all. In fact one of them practices medicine and diagnosing and the other doesn't. One of the professions treats patients when they are already sick and the other treats patients and prevents them from getting sick. What I mean to say is they are BOTH important and DIFFERENT fields. It is not an issue of assisting anyone. PA's do not want to be doctors and they don't want to ge NP's they are a career that is separate from both.

    When I was in school and I got my Bachelors in Biololgy one of the required classes in my school was physics and it was a common weed out course and many of the people at my school went into nursing when they could not pass physics because nursing did not require it. The school I went to is one of the best in the state for nursing so they had their hard classes too I am sure! Please don't miss understand me by thinking that I mean nursing is the easier route, but I wanted to mention this because the whole mood of this forum seems to be degrading the PA and I just wanted to illustrate that the PA route is a hard route too. You all know how hard it is to be a student. PA and NP both start out as students alike and I just wanted to point out that both fields have their difficulties even though they are all different difficulties that they both face.

    I just wanted also to mention that PA's in the state of AZ are required to do CME's and recertify every 6 years just as NP's do CME's so do PA's.

    I am not in the medical field to "compete" with anyone. I am in the medical field to help people in the way that I can with what I do best. However, I do think the competativeness sort of a good thing because it forces PA'a and NP's alike to both give the best care to the patient as we both keep each other on our toes! I want to give credit to both professions for that.

    I also wanted to mention since I feel I have to defend the PA route a little on this website that there are only 2 schools that offer the PA and their are SEVERAL nursing schools so it is really hard to get into PA school as opposed to nursing school in my state. I have 6000 hours of clinical experience, volunteer experience and a high GPA to get into the program and the competativeness of getting into PA school is really difficult. When there are less seats to apply to it makes it harder...not comparing nursing to PA school, but the less people that will make it in makes it competative. If there were more PA schools maybe it would be easier to get in. Mainly I just wanted to mention this in hope that all of you nurses would PLEASE respect the PA's too becasue they deserve it as much as you do!

    I also wanted to mention. Someone else mentioned that PA have to practice while a doctor is in the building. This is not true a PA has their own patients and it is up to the doctor if he wants to review the charts or not. The doctor can give his PA as much freedom as he feels he wants to and not all PA's have every single chart reviewed. A PA only has to have the ability to contact the doctor by pager, or telephone they do not have to be "in the building". Many PA's function as primary care providers in rural areas as well.

    I repect both nurses and PA's because I believe they are both important careers in the medical field. I just wish their was not so much anamocity between fields because I know both fields could learn a lot from each other and work really well together.

    Anyway, again I want the thank all of you nurses who support the PA profession. I admire all of you.
    Thank you!!!!
    PA/NP same thing to me. As far as the laws are concerned what you said is true in some states, but not in others. It just depends on the state. It's stupid as I think it should be across the board for NP/PAs but each state has their own BS.

    I've frequently read people trying to defend one thing or another; trying to downplay PA or NP or DO or whatever. It's common in the net world but in the real world we all know it doesn't matter. We're all in this for the same reason and that's to help people who need help or else we would've been stock brokers or computer analysts.
  5. by   BlocDoc
    As a teenager, I started as an orderly, putting nursing home residents on the commode- I did this ALL day long. A few years later I became a unit clerk ( a white male in a South Philly hospital with all black female UC's-think that won't humble you?) while going to nursing school. I went on to work for years in the hospital system- Was a USAF flight nurse, did ICU/CCU and open heart-Moved to Level one trauma and then to PA school (couldn't pass organic chem to save my life but I wanted to do more) I chose PA school because it preserved my ability to "move around" which, clinically, is something that I had demonstrated a propensity to do. I never wanted med school because I didn't think I had the drive for the long haul program and bills- My wife was a professional (non-medical) and had her own career aspirations- Plus I had a kid and a mortgage- Nursing allowed me to work 24/40 weekends for the 3 years I did the PA thing. I have been a PA for 11 years- I have a great job. I work with NP's on occasion- I know several in fact- After the first year or so, I find that things play out and the two are (in my opinion) indistinguishable in a given clinical area. I don't mind the supervision requirement. Whether we believe it or not, there is always someone supervising all of us.

    I find the NP/PA relationship to be analogous to the MD/DO relationship- Trained under different philosophies- Boarded and legislated in some ways the same and in others, differently. But in the end, both are much needed commodities.

    Say what you will to each other. But in the end consider yourselves blessed to be working and serving. On any given day, I am still the guy putting residents on the commode- Because it needs to be done...

    Matthew R. Miller, RN, CEN, FN, PA-c, DSc. FRCSc
    Director-Pain Management Division
    Penn Surgery Institute
  6. by   zenman
    Quote from BlocDoc
    As a teenager, I started as an orderly, putting nursing home residents on the commode- I did this ALL day long. A few years later I became a unit clerk ( a white male in a South Philly hospital with all black female UC's-think that won't humble you?) while going to nursing school. I went on to work for years in the hospital system- Was a USAF flight nurse, did ICU/CCU and open heart-Moved to Level one trauma and then to PA school (couldn't pass organic chem to save my life but I wanted to do more) I chose PA school because it preserved my ability to "move around" which, clinically, is something that I had demonstrated a propensity to do. I never wanted med school because I didn't think I had the drive for the long haul program and bills- My wife was a professional (non-medical) and had her own career aspirations- Plus I had a kid and a mortgage- Nursing allowed me to work 24/40 weekends for the 3 years I did the PA thing. I have been a PA for 11 years- I have a great job. I work with NP's on occasion- I know several in fact- After the first year or so, I find that things play out and the two are (in my opinion) indistinguishable in a given clinical area. I don't mind the supervision requirement. Whether we believe it or not, there is always someone supervising all of us.

    I find the NP/PA relationship to be analogous to the MD/DO relationship- Trained under different philosophies- Boarded and legislated in some ways the same and in others, differently. But in the end, both are much needed commodities.

    Say what you will to each other. But in the end consider yourselves blessed to be working and serving. On any given day, I am still the guy putting residents on the commode- Because it needs to be done...

    Matthew R. Miller, RN, CEN, FN, PA-c, DSc. FRCSc
    Director-Pain Management Division
    Penn Surgery Institute
    Damn, your history almost mirrors mine. And yes, we do what must be done. The other day, we just coud not get our usual 2 aides for the shift. So me and an LPN were the aides for the unit. Actually, I think we were faster than the aides...but my back hurts!
  7. by   nev
    I just want to know if what I heard was a rumor or not. Can NPs becoming PAs by just doing 1-2 years in PA school. Do they get some sort of advanced placement?

    Thanks
    Nev
  8. by   Danielle4
    Quote from nev
    I just want to know if what I heard was a rumor or not. Can NPs becoming PAs by just doing 1-2 years in PA school. Do they get some sort of advanced placement?

    Thanks
    Nev

    Nev,

    PA programs are all about 2 years in length (some of them vary in the number of months- the one I have seen them for 24-26 months for the most part) so the answer to your question is yes.

    I don't think you get advanced placement as an NP, but I am sure you would be highly appreciated and admired by all of the students for your clinical background and knowledge since those from PA school come from all different clinical backgrounds.

    Just to let you know though some places will hire a PA or NP for the same position so in some cases they compete for jobs so they are considered both mid level positions. Even though they are very different roles in medicine in some cases they have the same jobs, but not in most cases.

    I hope that helps you a little.

    Danielle
  9. by   patnshan
    Quote from nev
    I just want to know if what I heard was a rumor or not. Can NPs becoming PAs by just doing 1-2 years in PA school. Do they get some sort of advanced placement?

    Thanks
    Nev
    Yes they can in two to three years, just like everybody else. No advanced standing, just probably favorable recognition in the admission process. Kind of what Danielle said.

    Pat
  10. by   SusanJean
    Quote from patnshan
    Yes they can in two to three years, just like everybody else. No advanced standing, just probably favorable recognition in the admission process. Kind of what Danielle said.

    Pat
    Correct. Any applicant that is accepted would have to go through the entire course work and clinical for PA school, regardless of previous experience or education. For that matter, I am not aware of any PA schools that accept credit transfers from other PA schools - not that they are not out there.

    Though, for the life of me, I don't know why an NP would want to go to PA school... I'm sure some will have their reasons, tho. Kinds seems redundant to me.

    SJ
  11. by   patnshan
    Quote from SusanJean
    Though, for the life of me, I don't know why an NP would want to go to PA school... I'm sure some will have their reasons, tho. Kinds seems redundant to me.

    SJ
    The only reason I could think of would be to obtain a more thorough medical education, although there are other, less intensive ways of doing that.

    Pat
  12. by   sailornurse
    Quote from nev
    I just want to know if what I heard was a rumor or not. Can NPs becoming PAs by just doing 1-2 years in PA school. Do they get some sort of advanced placement?

    Thanks
    Nev
    I doubt that anyone who is already a NP would need or want to go to PA school. Both programs are now or soon to be at the Master's level. NP's & PA's are both considered "mid-level providers". As a FNP I can't think of any reason that a NP would have to become a PA. I belong to our local advance practice group. Membership is open to: PA's, NP's, CNM, CRNA, CNS. Our current president is a PA (who was an RN in the ICU). He went the PA route because he had a Bachelors in community health ed (BCHE) & became an RN with an ADN. He would have had to get a BSN to go on to NP school. The only difference is that PA's can not practice independently & therefore can not open their own clinic/office. NP's can in many states (which is the case in New Mexico) & that is one advantage to being an NP. Pay is the same in most cases.
  13. by   sdgreen
    Quote from Kabin
    Interesting thread as I've been internally debating the PA/NP path for a few days now. I received a PA flyer from MidWestern University and it states that PAs need to sit for a recertification exam every 6 years. I have yet to hear anything similar for NPs.
    The recertification for NPs in Family Practice is every 5 years.

    ~S

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