Matriculation Requirements

Applicants are selected based on the Admissions Committee's assessment of their ability to successfully complete the training, and competently function in the role of the profession as defined by: the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc., as published in the Accreditation Standards for Physician Assistant Education; the State of Pennsylvania as published in the Medical Practice Act; and the Program.

Successful matriculation necessitates that all candidates must have the physical, emotional, and intellectual attributes necessary for success. 

For matriculation into the PA Program candidates must:

  1. Meet our Technical Standards or have written approval from the PA Program for accommodations.
  2. Successfully complete a criminal background check.
  3. Successfully pass a child abuse clearance.
  4. Pass drug abuse screening tests.
  5. Meet the CDC and Thomas Jefferson University’s requirements for vaccination and tuberculosis screening.
  6. Complete the prerequisite course work. Click here to see prerequisite requirements.


TECHNICAL STANDARDS

Students must:

  • Have the academic ability to learn a large volume of technically detailed information, and be able to synthesize and use this data to solve complex clinical problems. This information must be acquired in a short and intense period of study,that requires well-developed study skills, a high level of motivation, and may require considerable personal and financial sacrifice.
  • Possess the emotional maturity and stability to approach highly stressful human situations in a calm and rational manner.
  • Have the ability to effectively communicate with ill patients from a wide diversity of cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds in an empathetic and sensitive fashion.
  • Have well-developed oral and written communication skills in the English language.
  • Have comfort with the role of a dependent practitioner operating under the supervision of a licensed physician, while simultaneously feeling comfortable with the large amount of responsibility that goes along with the delivery of patient care in sometimes remote locations.
  • Display strong ethical integrity consistent with working as a health care professional.
  • Have sufficient physical abilities in the areas of sensory function (vision, hearing and touch sensation), hand-eye coordination, and neurologic and muscular coordination and control to competently perform the technical activities that are a critical part of the program and profession, including:
    • Physical examinations of male and female patients, which includes visual inspecting, listening to heart and lung sounds with a stethoscope, and examining by touch to gather information such as skin temperature and texture, as well as completing other maneuvers.
    • Performance and interpretation of diagnostic studies such as blood tests, EKG's, and X-rays.
    • Surgical assisting, which can involve activities such as control of bleeding and suturing (wound closure by placing stitches).
    • Performing common procedures such as applying casts, suturing, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), venipuncture (placing needle into a vein to collect a blood sample) and starting an intravenous access line.

CRIMINAL BACKGROUND, CHILD ABUSE CLEARANCES, AND DRUG AND ALCOHOL SCREENING

  • All applicants who are offered admission to Thomas Jefferson University Physician Assistant Program, East Falls Campus and New Jersey Campus, are required to have a criminal background check, including fingerprinting, and child abuse clearance prior to starting the Program and again before the student starts clinical rotations.
  • In addition, PA students who are offered admission must agree to drug and alcohol testing, prior to beginning the didactic year, prior to beginning clinical rotations, upon suspicion of drug or alcohol use, and randomly, as described the Drug and Alcohol Policy.
  • Some clinical sites may require PA Students to be fingerprinted again and/or undergo additional drug testing. The PA Program will provide you with the appropriate information to complete these requirements, as needed.  Clinical rotation sites that require a criminal background check, child abuse clearance, fingerprinting, or urine drug screening may deny a student’s participation in the clinical experience or rotation, because of a felony or misdemeanor conviction or a record of child abuse. Clinical sites may also deny participation in clinical experiences for other reasons, such as failure of a required drug test, or inability to produce an appropriate health clearance. As participation in clinical rotations is a required part of the curriculum and a requirement for graduation, denial of participation by a clinical site may result in delay of graduation or the inability to graduate from the program.
  • Applicants that have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor may be denied acceptance into the Program, or may be denied certification or licensure as a Physician Assistant. Information regarding individual eligibility may be obtained from the appropriate credentialing and licensing bodies.
  • Applicants must agree that they will notify the PA Program of any arrests or change in health status within 72 hours.
  • Applicants and students may request a copy of the Drug and Alcohol Policy at any time. 

IMMUNIZATION AND TUBERCULOSIS SCREENING REQUIREMENTS

  • All students must agree to comply with the CDC’s guidelines for immunization of health care providers.  The guidelines are continually updated. 
  • In addition, at times, the Thomas Jefferson University PA Program, East Falls Campus and New Jersey Campus, requirements for immunization (including requiring titers for proof of immunity) may be more stringent due to requirements of our clinical sites.  Students must be willing to abide by these requirements. 
  • Only students with medical reasons for exemption with written documentation from their healthcare provider will be considered for exemption.  This may limit the student’s clinical rotation options based on clinical site requirements.   

 

 

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