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Physician associates support doctors in the diagnosis and management of patients.
Training and qualifications required
You’ll usually need a bioscience-related first degree or be a registered healthcare professional such as a nurse, allied health professional or midwife to get onto one of the training programmes available. Training usually two years, including many aspects of an undergraduate or postgraduate medical degree. A four-year undergraduate Masters programme is offered by one university and a level 7 apprenticeship standard for physician associates has been approved for delivery. .
Expected working hours and salary range
Staff in the NHS will usually work a standard 37.5 hours per week. They may work a shift pattern. Most jobs in the NHS are covered by the Agenda for Change (AfC) pay scales which covers all staff except doctors, dentists and the most senior managers. Physician associates will usually start on AfC band 7. Many posts are internships which can be AfC band 6. Terms and conditions of service can vary for employers outside the NHS.
Desirable skills and values
As well as academic achievement, you’ll need to be able to demonstrate experience of working with the public, an interest in health or social care, the right values to work for the NHS and excellent communication skills.
With further training and/or experience, you may be able to develop your career further and apply for vacancies in areas such as further specialisation, management, research, or teaching.