The Baylor College of Medicine PA Program refers to a 30-month Master of Science Physician Assistant (PA) Program to train PAs, who provide a wide spectrum of healthcare services to individuals and communities in a broad range of settings. The PA Program is appropriate for students who are seeking careers that help to improve the health and well-being of children, adolescents, young adults, men, women of child bearing age, mothers, and older adults.
The Baylor College of Medicine PA Program is located at the Texas Medical Center, the largest medical center in the world, and is recognized as the premier private academic health science center in the Greater Southwest. The university was ranked as one of the top 25 medical schools for research, and trains more than 3,000 medical, graduate, nurse anesthesia, and physician assistant students, as well as residents and post-doctoral fellows.
BCM’s PA Program ensures that, through education, research and service roles, students benefit from professional, hands-on contact with experienced instructors, respectable researchers, and clinicians in active clinical practices in the specialties such as emergency medicine, internal medicine, family medicine, pediatrics, surgery, obstetrics and gynecology.
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In 2002, the College Strategic Plan mapped out initiatives that helped define the PA Program’s goals, which were reaffirmed in 2010. The first of these initiatives is to transform education to provide the skills required for the future advancement of medicine, followed by the aim to compete successfully for highly qualified trainees, and, thirdly, to create curricula for the 21st Century.
Following the establishment of the strategic plan, six program goals were adopted:
- Recruit highly qualified applicants for enrollment as students in the Master of Science Physician Assistant Program;
- Offer a didactic curriculum comprised of basic science, behavioral, and pre-clinical sciences of medicine along with clinical and critical thinking/problem solving skills that provides the foundation required for entry to the clinical year of the program;
- Offer a clinical experience that facilitates the development of judgment, critical reflection, professional responsibility, and clinical competence using a biopsychosocial approach to patients, families and communities;
- Prepare graduates with the analytical skills required to locate, appraise, and apply evidence from scientific studies to improve patient care practices;
- Prepare graduates that exhibit respect and compassion for others, responsiveness to diverse populations, and a commitment to the ethical, legal and regulatory standards guiding clinical practice; and
- Maintain an accredited program with a curriculum that prepares entry-level graduates for the contemporary practice of medicine.
Baylor College of Medicine PA Program: Professionalism and Competencies
Students enrolled in the PA program at Baylor College of Medicine are supposed to have qualities that reflect the high ideals of healthcare practice and ethical behavior such as: academic integrity, altruism, confidentiality, commitment to learning, interpersonal, personal integrity, personal demeanor and appearance, professional responsibility and environmental respect.
By the time of graduation, PA students at the Baylor College of Medicine should be able to select and properly order a range of diagnostic studies to further delineate and monitor health risks, illnesses or injuries under consideration; define problems of a biological, functional, psychological, environmental and cultural nature and their differential possibilities; provide continuous care of patients in the home, nursing homes, extended-care facilities, and hospitals as these settings relate to the supervising physician’s practice; and perform evaluation and therapeutic procedures in an independent manner when responding to life threatening illnesses and injuries.