Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Access Thesis

Degree Name

MS in Physician Assistant Studies (PA)


Physician Assistant Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Alicia Quella


Physician assistants (PAs) play a very important role in healthcare, acting as a collaborative team member to treat patients for the greater good. It is important that PAs are utilized in a manner that is beneficial to the healthcare system and public population and so evaluation of their qualities is necessary. Specifically in question is their unique characteristic of flexibility, which provides them with the opportunity to transition from one area of medical expertise to another in order to fulfill the needs of patients and healthcare demands. To obtain pertinent information about the flexibility characteristic of the PA population, online search engines such as Google Scholar and data from resources such as American Academy of Physician Assistant were used to evaluate the effect of PA career flexibility on primary and non- primary care. Results show a trend of the non-primary healthcare field benefitting from PA flexibility in contrast to the primary care field which is not currently receiving much profit. Overall, to measure a characteristic is difficult. It just so happens to be that in this time and age, the PA population is showing more interest in what non-primary care has to offer in comparison to primary care. It is uncertain though what the future holds with the aging population. It is important to comprehend that medicine is and will forever be changing and to keep up is to preserve the adaptability of the PA workforce.