Chatham University

Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) Curriculum

All physician assistant studies courses are limited to physician assistant studies students, unless permission is obtained from the program director.

The Chatham University MPAS Program is dedicated to producing knowledgeable, compassionate, ethical, and clinically skillful graduates who are ready to provide health care services to all persons without exclusion and who are willing to become the future leaders and educators of the profession. This will be accomplished by:

  • Providing a student-centered curriculum which promotes self-directed and lifelong learning as well as professionalism and service;
  • Educating competent physician assistants to practice as primary care providers to all populations;
  • Contributing to the advancement of knowledge in medicine and physician assistant education;
  • Encouraging students to serve local, national, and international communities through active involvement in service-oriented programs for medically underserved populations;
  • Involving students in inter-professional activities and encouraging the development of team skills and an appreciation of team-based, patient-centered care and
  • Promoting participation in professional organizations and the education of future PAs.

The curriculum is a 24 month (85 semester credits) professional course of study leading to the MPAS degree. Basic medical sciences, research, clinical methods, and clinical experiences are integrated from the beginning of the program and continued throughout the course of study.

The program produces physician assistants capable of providing primary medical care in an ethical, legal, safe, and caring manner. To achieve this, students must acquire knowledge and the ability to use that knowledge in the practice of medicine. Students are expected to consistently retrieve and apply their knowledge appropriately in the area of their patients and reason effectively. Self-directed learning skills are necessary in order to keep their knowledge current. Self-knowledge, knowledge and understanding of others and continued professional development beyond the degree are necessary for success.

Chatham University utilizes hybrid model of Problem-Based Learning, lecture, and on-line activity that challenges students to be self-directed and prepares students for the evidence-based, problem-oriented world of clinical medicine. Through actual patient cases, students develop learning issues and research topics using the most up to date resources, work in teams and receive feedback on knowledge base as well as professionalism to prepare them for primary care, problem-focused clinical practice.

The MPAS program is competency-based, requiring all students to master the required material. The grading system is pass/fail. Any student receiving a failing grade may remediate the course work with the approval of the respective instructor of record.

A student in the MPAS program must be in good academic standing to remain enrolled in the program. To be eligible for graduation, students must be in good academic standing and successfully complete all required courses.

Accreditation

The MPAS program is accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc. (ARC-PA). Only graduates of an accredited program are permitted to sit for the certification examination, which is administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA).

Program Requirements

+ Degree Requirements

Completion of 85 credits in physician assistant studies courses.

All courses are pass/fail grading only.

PAS600 Essentials for the Physician Assistant I

Essentials for the Physician Assistant I is a problem-oriented approach to primary and specialty care medicine. This course incorporates medical diagnosis and treatment; pharmacotherapeutics; psychosocial assessment and management; patient education; management of patients with chronic illness; clinical decision making; and prevention of disability and disease through detection, education, and prevention. The course is divided into three segments. Audit grades will be given to PAS 600A & PAS 600B. The final grade will be given for the course in PAS600C. Prerequisite: PAS 616

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PAS601 Essentials for the Physician Assistant II

Essentials for the Physician Assistant II is a problem-oriented approach to primary and specialty care medicine. This course incorporates medical diagnosis and treatment; pharmacotherapeutics; psychosocial assessment and management; patient education; management of patients with chronic illness; clinical decision making; and prevention of disability and disease through detection, education, and prevention. The course is divided into three segments. Audit grades will be given to PAS 601A & PAS 601B. The final grade will be given for the course in PAS601C. Prerequisite: PAS 600C

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PAS602 Clinical Application of Basic Sciences I

An in-depth study of topics in gross human anatomy, physiology, and pathophysiology, supporting the instruction in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses. Instruction will involve basic sciences with an emphasis on the clinical application of the material, utilizing a systems approach.

4
PAS603 Clinical Application of Basic Sciences II

This course is a continuation of PAS 602. An in-depth study of topics in gross human anatomy, physiology, and pathophysiology, supporting the instruction in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses. Instruction will involve basic sciences with an emphasis on the clinical application of the material, utilizing a systems approach. Prerequisite: PAS 602

4
PAS604 Critical Reading of the Literature I

Students critically evaluate medical literature and resources used in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses, including research design, data collection, and statistical analysis.

1
PAS605 Critical Reading of the Literature II

This course is a continuation of PAS 604. Students critically evaluate medical literature and resources used in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses, including research design, data collection, and statistical analysis. Prerequisite: PAS 604

1
PAS606 Clinical Pharmacology I

This clinically oriented course provides students with knowledge required for the safe and effective use of pharmaceutical agents in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases through an understanding of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. Topics selected will support the body systems covered in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses.

2
PAS607 Clinical Pharmacology II

This course is a continuation of PAS 606. This clinically oriented course provides students with knowledge required for the safe and effective use of pharmaceutical agents in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of diseases through an understanding of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. Topics selected will support the body systems covered in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses. Prerequisite: PAS 606

2
PAS610 Introduction to Clinical Experiences I

This course will introduce the student to various types of medical documentation and medical terminology. It will address HIPPA and OSHA regulations, as well as Universal Precautions. Professional comportment while on rotations will also be introduced.

2
PAS611 Introduction to Clinical Experiences II

This is a continuation of PAS 610. Students will continue to explore various types of medical documentation, and issues surrounding cultural sensitivity in medicine. Professional comportment and communication skills will be addressed. Students will be introduced to billing and coding. Policies and procedures for clinical rotations will also be introduced. Prerequisite: PAS 610

2
PAS612 Introduction to the PA Profession

This course introduces the students to the physician assistant profession and their role in the American healthcare system. Topics of discussion include history of the profession, national and state organizations, federal and state laws affecting practice, education, and the future of the profession.

1
PAS614 Medical Ethics

Contemporary professional medical ethics issues are discussed and debated. Instruction is provided through classroom discussions, guest lectures, and small group problem-based learning.

1
PAS616 History and Physical Examination

PAS 616 is an introductory course designed to orient students to the theory and application of medical history taking and physical exam performance. Students will participate in group lectures and practical lab sessions, and will be evaluated through class participation, quiz performance, oral and written communication, and skills competencies.

2
PAS617 Clinical Procedures

Laboratory course covering theory and application of common clinical procedures that a physician assistant will encounter during practice. Students demonstrate competence through practical evaluations.

2
PAS625 Clinical Decision Making I

Problem-oriented cases present the student with opportunities to use clinical reasoning to formulate differential diagnoses and emphasize development of treatment and care plans. These courses run concurrently with the clinical experiences I-IX.

1
PAS626 Clinical Decision Making II

Problem-oriented cases present the student with opportunities to use clinical reasoning to formulate differential diagnoses and emphasize development of treatment and care plans. These courses run concurrently with the clinical experiences I-IX.

1
PAS627 Clinical Decision Making III

Problem-oriented cases present the student with opportunities to use clinical reasoning to formulate differential diagnoses and emphasize development of treatment and care plans. These courses run concurrently with the clinical experiences I-IX.

2
PAS628 Clinical Decision Making IV

Drawing on skills acquired in PAS 625, 626 & 627, as well as knowledge that has been acquired throughout the curriculum, students develop problem oriented cases which include history, physical examination, diagnostics, treatment and patient education, based on specific disease entities. These cases are presented in a grand rounds format. Additionally, students complete summative program evaluations related to medical knowledge base and clinical assessment skills.

1
PAS630 Topics in Clinical Medicine

An intensive review in preparation for entering practice as a physician assistant. A series of special seminars and presentations that provides the student with a topical approach to medicine.

3
PAS633 Physical Diagnosis I

Practical laboratory course covering application of interviewing, history taking and physical examination skills, as well as elicitation and documentation of patient data. Students demonstrate competence through practical evaluations and written documentation. Students perform system based and problem-focused physical examinations for both primary care and specialty complaints that support the coinciding information that students will cover in PAS 600 Essentials for the Physician Assistant I. Prerequisite: PAS 616

3
PAS634 Physical Diagnosis II

This course is a continuation of PAS 633. Practical laboratory course covering application of interviewing, history taking and physical exam skills, as well as elicitation and documentation of patient data. Students perform problem-based physical examinations for problem based Primary Care complaints that coincide with the patients they encounter in Essentials for the Physician Assistant as well as non-problem focused male and female genitourinary examinations, and a comprehensive examination including all body systems. Prerequisite: PAS 633

3
PAS635 Healthcare Policy

Students explore relevant health-care law and policy issues that impact the Physician Assistant profession and health-care delivery systems. Instruction is provided through classroom discussions, guest lectures, and small group problem-based learning.

1
PAS636 Program to Practice

Assist students with the transition of becoming a clinically practicing physician assistant. The course will provide information on how to prepare for the new career, including obtaining certification, licensure, malpractice insurance, and many other essential items needed before they begin practicing.

1
PAS640 Clinical Experiences I

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS641 Clinical Experiences II

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS642 Clinical Experiences III

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS643 Clinical Experiences IV

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS644 Clinical Experiences V

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS645 Clinical Experiences VI

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS646 Clinical Experience VII

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS647 Clinical Experience VIII

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3
PAS648 Clinical Experiences IX

Clinical courses designed to provide students with supervised medical and surgical clinical practice experiences enabling them to meet program expectations and acquire the competencies needed for clinical PA practice.

3