The Netherlands Physician Assistant


  • Geert Brink
  • Quinten Driesschen
  • Lian Elfering


Netherlands, Physician Assistant


The PA profession was introduced to the Netherlands in 2001 as a temporary pilot. In 2003, the Universities of Nijmegen and Utrecht launched the first accredited PA Master’s degree programs in the country.  This was followed by programs in Amsterdam, Groningen and Rotterdam. The number of programs is limited by the government and students enrollment is capped at 250 to 270 per year.  Since July 1st, 2018 the title “Physician Assistant” in the Netherlands is a protected title that only PAs can use who successfully completed an accredited Master’s degree in Physician Assistant.

Author Biographies

Geert Brink

Geert van den Brink is program coordinator of the HAN Master physician assistant and chair of the Dutch platform PA/NP.

Quinten Driesschen

Quinten van den Driesschen has been a physician assistant since 2006 with clinical experience in primary and urgent care.  He is a medical-lecturer at Han University of Applied Sciences, co-founder and first president of the Netherlands Association Physician Assistants (NAPA) and member of the NAPA working-group International affairs.

Lian Elfering

Lian Elfering has clinical experience as a physician assistant in plastic surgery, is a former board member of the NAPA and member of the NAPA working group on International Affairs.




How to Cite

Brink, G., Driesschen, Q., & Elfering, L. (2021). The Netherlands Physician Assistant. Social Innovations Journal, 8. Retrieved from