How and where to acquire clinical hours in order to apply for P.A. program?

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c4dance in Los Altos, California

23 months ago

I am beginning my required prerequisite courses at school to be eligible to apply for a P.A. program, but I am also required to accumulate 3,000 hours of "clinical experience". The program states that students' clinical hours will be evaluated on an individual basis--I think that means that even if I don't have exactly 3,000 hours I may still be considered if my clinical experience is on a relatively equal level.

I have zero experience in the health care field so I will be starting from scratch. I looked into volunteer opportunities at a local hospital but they only need help with the information desk (which doesn't count for the program).

1.) Does anyone know of other possible ways to accumulate my hours/experience?

2.) I live in California in the Silicon Valley area- is anyone a physician in this area who has a need for help or shadowing?

Thank you!

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Wayne05 in Castro Valley, California

23 months ago

For many PA programs shadowing doesn't count as clinical experience, what they mean is hands on clinical experience usually in some profession capacity that requires a certification such as RN, Respiratory therapist, EMT, Paramedic, LVN, Radiologists, surgical tech, CNA, and sometimes phlembotomist, etc... 3,000 Hours is about 1.5 years @ 40hrs/week. Do you want to shadow a doctor for that long, lol?

Best bet is to find a program, do it for 1-2 years or less if accelerated (EMT, Phlembotomist, BSN) , get a job in the field and do it for 3,000 hours. Also, you should broaden your scope to other schools because 3,000 seems on the high range for clinical experience, most require 2,000 hours.

I'm am in the same boat, but have a Science Degree and most of the pre-reqs with little clinical experience looking for an accelerated program of sorts and if not a 2 year certificate program.

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