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Five Different Types of PA Specialties

Physician assistants are some of the most commonly visited medical professionals around the country, making them incredibly versatile for patients in need. Despite this versatility, there are still specializations a PA can pursue to give their medical practice a more narrowed, focused approach. Let’s review five common specializations for physician assistants and a few of their benefits as noted by About.com.

  1. Urgent Care – Working as a PA in an urgent care center is not only lucrative (UCC PAs have an average salary exceeding $130,000) but it also keeps your medical training sharp and top of mind. Urgent care centers are springing up across the country, with thousands added yearly to serve the millions of patients who don’t need to be seen by emergency room doctors.

  2. Primary Care – From family medicine to pediatrics and women’s health, a primary care PA will cover a wide range of specializations. They are becoming more and more demanded as their peers move on into specialized fields such as some of the ones listed here. While not as lucrative as other specializations from an income standpoint, the primary care field still pays in the high $90,000 range and, much like UCC PAs, offers a chance to keep your skills sharp across a range of procedures.

  3. Emergency Room – ER visits will always offer a unique experience from day to day. While this field can bring with it some high-risk patients, your common patients will be more stable and simply seeking treatment for minor ailments. The heavy patient load carries with it a more rewarding salary exceeding $115,000 on average. You can learn more about ER tasks in our hospitalist procedures CME course.

  4. Dermatology – The increased risk of skin cancer and the increased popularity of cosmetic procedures make the dermatological field both competitive and financially rewarding for PAs. With cosmetic procedures being covered on an out-of-pocket basis, it can reduce the impact of lengthy delays in insurance reimbursements and put cash flow right into the practice. A dermatology PA earns on average upwards of $127,000. Find out more about dermatology and its potential applications with our dermatology CME course!

  5. Surgery – A surgical PA could apply to any number of surgery specializations such as neurosurgery, cardiothoracic surgery or orthopedic surgery. With an aging population of patients, preventive surgical procedures are becoming more commonplace. Taking on one of these specializations puts you on dedicated surgery teams with six figure incomes usually exceeding $110,000.

Aside from doctoral practices, PA fields offer some of the best paying and most varied job opportunities for medical professionals. Whether focusing on a specialization or broad field, you’re assured a dynamic, well-paying and gratifying job experience. Review some of our continuing medical education courses to see how you can get the most out of your PA career.