India Physician Assistants
Keywords:India, Physician Assistant
AbstractThe PA program in India took its birth in the year 1992 at a private, tertiary healthcare institute in Chennai, India. It was born out of the necessity to fulfil the vacancies due to the constant exodus of resident doctors in pursuit of higher education. This, along with the rising disease burden, led to the introduction of PAs in India to even out the imbalance in health care delivery. Inspired by the success of PA profession in the United States, Dr. K. M. Cherian, renowned cardiac surgeon, believed that a similar profession might mitigate the problem of the floating population of resident doctors. After his return from USA, Dr. Cherian introduced the PA concept in India by starting the PA program in Chennai in the year 1992 at the Institute of Cardiovascular disease as a Diploma program and the first PA graduated in 1994. Subsequently, a 2-yearMaster’s degree PA program was started. In 1996, an integrated 4-year undergraduate bachelor’s degree course was established. Soon PA profession proved to be a vital workforce in the institute. The physicians who were exposed to this concept spread the message to other health care institutes. PAs were found to be of immense use in whichever institute they worked. Anticipating the demand of this profession in health care arena, more institutions started the program in collaboration with reputed universities across the country.
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