The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges Wales strongly supports the introduction of training and employment of physicians associates in Wales
The Wales Academy recognises that Physician Associates (PAs):
- are collaborative healthcare professionals working as an integral part of the multidisciplinary team.
- increase the numbers of the medical workforce and therefore increase access to quality care for patients.
- are able to work within mental health, general practice and a large number of hospital specialities.
- have contributed towards improving relations and morale of the NHS workforce, in particular junior doctors.
- are a positive solution to help to retain and attract more junior doctors to Wales.
- contribute to an enhanced training experience for other health professionals.
- can help to successfully integrate this new role into the NHS Wales medical workforce by drawing upon their experience of working in many locations and specialities
The Wales Academy supports the training of physician associates in Wales but will not support this at the expense of the junior doctor training budget. To ensure a high standard of patient care, PAs will need to be comprehensively trained and supervised by experienced consultant trainers as part of a structured and externally accredited programme.
The Wales Academy stresses that:
- PAs should have opportunities to work in both primary and secondary care.
- PAs can provide a continuing service to patients allowing doctors in training to attend their teaching and development sessions.
- Senior nominated doctors acting as supervisors must be given sufficient time to enable PAs to receive adequate supervision and this should not be at the expense of time available for the supervision of junior doctors.
- PAs will require to be professionally regulated. We call upon Government to show their support for this.
For more information please contact: Ollie John, Operational Manager for Wales