Physician Assistant Courses

Code Course Name Description Credits
P A 501 Clinical Correlations I

This course will include presentations and discussions by guest lecturers on end-of-life care, cultural diversity, HIPAA, ICD-9 coding/billing, dealing with the stress of illness/injury, counseling families, legal issues, and HIV/Hepatitis C patient care. Case studies, readings, group discussions, will be used to focus on issues of concern to physician assistants. Mini rotations in a variety of clinical settings will be assigned in conjunction with the course. 

2
P A 502 Clinical Correlations II

Case studies, readings, and group discussions will be used to focus on issues of concern to physician assistants. Mini rotations in a variety of clinical settings will be assigned in conjunction with the seminar. A basic understanding of the dimensions of human sexuality will be provided including historical and cross-cultural perspectives of sexuality, and social issues. Guest speakers will present various topics.

2
P A 510 Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis I

This course is designed to provide students with the background and skills needed to make accurate assessments and diagnoses using detailed history-taking and an appropriate and thorough physical exam. The course will be taught using a system-based approach, incorporating lecture, audio-visual aids, teaching models, and clinical laboratory sessions. Practical experience will enable the student to become more proficient in the technique of history-taking and physical examination findings.

3
P A 511 Clinical Assessment And Diagnosis II

A continuation of PA 510. The PA student will further develop and refine skills in history-taking and physical examination. This course will include systems not covered in PA 510, and signs and symptoms of disease processes relevant to these systems. Clinical assessment skills will continue to be developed. 

3
P A 520A Pathophysiology I Disease processes will be presented with regard to definition or description of the disease, etiology, pathogenesis, pathology, clinical features, and therapy or prognosis. 2
P A 522 Medical Anatomy and Physiology I

Course delivered at The Commonwealth Medical College
Medical Anatomy and Physiology is an intense ten-week course that will take the student through the anatomical and physiological aspects of the human body via a systems-based approach. The instructional material will be presented in a multidisciplinary format to foster the integration of the basic disciplines of Gross Anatomy (full cadaver dissection), Histology, Embryology, Clinical Anatomy (which will include the surface anatomy and the physical examination), Radiological Anatomy, and Case based Physiology. The integration of these disciplines requires lectures, tutorials, and clinical case lectures as well asactive learning with full cadaver dissection experiences in the Gross Anatomy Laboratory. Students will also learn how to “read” and interpret normal medical images and locate important geographic landmarks within the body.

4
P A 530 Clinical Medicine I

Includes instruction in disease processes and Orthopedics. This course includes instruction in disease processes as they relate to specific organ systems. Signs and symptoms of various diseases, diagnostic procedures, and therapeutic measures used in treating diseases will be covered. Instruction will be received in common disorders of the skeletal system. The course includes components in clinical medicine (4 hours per week) and orthopedics (1.5hours per week).

4
P A 531 Clinical Medicine II

Continuation of PA 530. This course is a combination of clinical medicine, dermatology, critical care, pathophysiology; and Laboratory Medicine. This course will focus on disease states of all organ systems of the human body, as well as diagnosis and treatment. Dermatology will instruct the student in common dermatological diseases, treatment, and referral. Critical care will instruct the student in the care of the critically ill patient, including respirator use, cardiac disease, pulmonary disease, and acutely ill post-operative patients and trauma patients. Laboratory Medicine will cover the selection and interpretation of appropriate routine and special diagnostic, monitoring, and screening laboratory tests. Consequences of medical intervention is discussed based on the theories of pathogenesis. This course includes components in Clinical Medicine (4 hours per week), Critical Care (2 hours per week), Laboratory Medicine (2 hours per week), Dermatology (1 hour per week), and Pathophysiology II (3 hours per week).

7
P A 540 Diagnostic Methods I

Medical microbiology will review the basics of bacteriology and virology. This course will instruct the student in common infectious agents in each of the systems of the human body. There will be a review of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). The course includes, medical microbiology (1 hour per week)

1
P A 541 Diagnostic Methods II

Developing an understanding of various laboratory tests used in the diagnosis of disease including disturbances of the hematologic system, the coagulation system, immunohematology, and medical microbiology. Introduction to diagnostic imaging with radiographic studies, CT scan, and MRI. Recognition of normal and abnormal findings and rational for ordering appropriate studies. Interpretation of 12 lead EKG including electro-physiology, axis, rate and rhythm, as well as differential diagnosis of arrhythmias. This course includes components in lab medicine (2 hours per week), EKG interpretation (1.5 hours per week), and radiology (1.5 hours per week).

3
P A 550 Basic Medical Science I

Introduction to pharmacology including pharmacokinetics, mechanisms of action, therapeutic use, adverse effects of major drug classes, and prescription rationale. This is the first semester of a two semester course. 

2
P A 551 Basic Medical Science II

This course includes pharmacology II, general surgery, emergency medicine, and medical nutrition. Pharmacology will instruct the student in therapeutic regimens related to additional classes of drugs not covered in pharmacology I. Surgery will provide a comprehensive overview of the most commonly encountered surgical diseases with emphasis on surgical anatomy, pre-, intra-, and post-operative care, operative approaches, and surgical considerations. Emergency medicine provides an introduction to emergency medicinal care, recognition of common emergency complaints, differential diagnosis and management. Medical nutrition will cover the basics of the food pyramid, nutritional needs and issues throughout the lifespan, and caloric and nutritional needs for the ill. This course includes components in pharmacology (3 hours per week), emergency medicine (2 hours per week), surgery (2 hours per week), and medical nutrition (1 hour per week).

5
P A 560 Behavioral Sciences

These courses focus on issues in health care as related to the PA profession, including the history of the profession, changes in the health care system, and legal issues pertaining to the delivery of health care. Advanced topics of ethical issues will be discussed. A combination of lecture and practical applications will be employed to teach medical interviewing. Psychiatry will introduce the recognition, diagnosis, treatment, and referral of patients with behavioral and mental disorders encountered in a primary care setting. This course includes components in Issues in Health Care (1.5 hours per week) and Psychiatry (1.5 hours per week).

2
P A 570 Developmental Medicine I

Geriatric medicine will introduce changes associated with aging, considering the physical, social, and emotional impacts. In addition, this course will review theories of aging, and focus on geriatric care in both specialty and primary care settings. This course includes geriatrics (2 hours per week). 

2
P A 571 Developmental Medicine II

Pediatric medicine (first of a two semester course) will cover stages of physical and social development and the importance of immunizations.

1
P A 572 Developmental Medicine III

This course continues with part two of Pediatric medicine and includes introduction to basic knowledge of obstetrics and gynecology, including life cycle changes, pregnancy, and delivery. Includes components of Pediatric medicine 2 (2 hours per week) and Ob/GYN (2 hours per week).

2
P A 580 Epidemiology/Research Methods

Introduction to research methodology and statistical analysis with emphasis on the epidemiology of infectious disease and preventive medicine. This course is intended to provide physician assistant students with the basic concepts of epidemiology and preventive medicine and a methodical approach of reviewing and interpreting health science research literature. The student will be able to demonstrate how to evaluate the quality and content of a research article and command a thorough knowledge of epidemiological principles, and their relationship to morbidity and mortality, disease surveillance, and preventive medicine. This course is 2 hours per week.

3
P A 590 Seminar I Case studies, readings, group discussions, and cadaver lab skills will be used to focus on issues of concern to physician assistants. Mini rotations in a variety of clinical settings will be assigned in conjunction with the seminar. 1
P A 591 Seminar II Case studies, readings, and group discussions will be used to focus on issues of concern to physician assistants. Mini rotations in a variety of clinical settings will be assigned in conjunction with the seminar. Clinical Phase?Involves full time experience for six weeks in clinical settings under the supervision of qualified health care professionals. Six different clerkship experiences are required (Pediatric Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Surgery, Orthopedics, Women's Health, Psychiatry, and an Elective). 1
P A 610 Clerkship I

Clerkships are 6-week clinical courses that provide the PA student with experience in inpatient and/or outpatient medicine in the areas of Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Women’s Health, Psychiatry and a 6-week elective. The student will be assigned to the department or facility and work directly with the supervision of the preceptor. The student medically evaluates patients and follows their progress; thereby developing the ability to elicit historical and physical findings, correlate those findings along with the patients' physiologic and biochemical data and emotional state in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan for patient management. The ability to analyze, synthesize and make decisions is one of the primary objectives of these clinical experiences. The student is given opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate competency in performing and interpreting certain medical procedures and tasks.

3
P A 611 Clerkship II

Clerkships are 6-week clinical courses that provide the PA student with experience in inpatient and/or outpatient medicine in the areas of Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Women’s Health, Psychiatry and a 6-week elective. The student will be assigned to the department or facility and work directly with the supervision of the preceptor. The student medically evaluates patients and follows their progress; thereby developing the ability to elicit historical and physical findings, correlate those findings along with the patients' physiologic and biochemical data and emotional state in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan for patient management. The ability to analyze, synthesize and make decisions is one of the primary objectives of these clinical experiences. The student is given opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate competency in performing and interpreting certain medical procedures and tasks.

3
P A 612 Clerkship III

Clerkships are 6-week clinical courses that provide the PA student with experience in inpatient and/or outpatient medicine in the areas of Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Women’s Health, Psychiatry and a 6-week elective. The student will be assigned to the department or facility and work directly with the supervision of the preceptor. The student medically evaluates patients and follows their progress; thereby developing the ability to elicit historical and physical findings, correlate those findings along with the patients' physiologic and biochemical data and emotional state in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan for patient management. The ability to analyze, synthesize and make decisions is one of the primary objectives of these clinical experiences. The student is given opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate competency in performing and interpreting certain medical procedures and tasks.

3
P A 613 Clerkship IV

Clerkships are 6-week clinical courses that provide the PA student with experience in inpatient and/or outpatient medicine in the areas of Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Women’s Health, Psychiatry and a 6-week elective. The student will be assigned to the department or facility and work directly with the supervision of the preceptor. The student medically evaluates patients and follows their progress; thereby developing the ability to elicit historical and physical findings, correlate those findings along with the patients' physiologic and biochemical data and emotional state in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan for patient management. The ability to analyze, synthesize and make decisions is one of the primary objectives of these clinical experiences. The student is given opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate competency in performing and interpreting certain medical procedures and tasks.

3
P A 614 Clerkship V

Clerkships are 6-week clinical courses that provide the PA student with experience in inpatient and/or outpatient medicine in the areas of Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Women’s Health, Psychiatry and a 6-week elective. The student will be assigned to the department or facility and work directly with the supervision of the preceptor. The student medically evaluates patients and follows their progress; thereby developing the ability to elicit historical and physical findings, correlate those findings along with the patients' physiologic and biochemical data and emotional state in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan for patient management. The ability to analyze, synthesize and make decisions is one of the primary objectives of these clinical experiences. The student is given opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate competency in performing and interpreting certain medical procedures and tasks.

3
P A 615 Clerkship VI

Clerkships are 6-week clinical courses that provide the PA student with experience in inpatient and/or outpatient medicine in the areas of Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, General Surgery, Women’s Health, Psychiatry and a 6-week elective. The student will be assigned to the department or facility and work directly with the supervision of the preceptor. The student medically evaluates patients and follows their progress; thereby developing the ability to elicit historical and physical findings, correlate those findings along with the patients' physiologic and biochemical data and emotional state in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan for patient management. The ability to analyze, synthesize and make decisions is one of the primary objectives of these clinical experiences. The student is given opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate competency in performing and interpreting certain medical procedures and tasks.

3
P A 640 Preceptorship I

Preceptorships: Six months of clinical training (two 3 month rotations) in an office-based primary care practice or area of chosen clinical track, working directly under the supervision of a physician. Emphasis will be on further development and refinement of clinical skills, patient assessment, treatment, and appropriate follow-up in the provision of health care services.

6
P A 650 Preceptorship II

Preceptorships: Six months of clinical training (two 3 month rotations) in an office-based primary care practice or area of chosen clinical track, working directly under the supervision of a physician. Emphasis will be on further development and refinement of clinical skills, patient assessment, treatment, and appropriate follow-up in the provision of health care services.

6