The impact of prior professional degrees and experiences on Manitoba Master of Physician Assistant Studies graduates didactic year, clinical year, and first job in relation to CanMEDS-PA: A quality improvement survey response study
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Background: The Manitoba Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) program attracts applicants with a variety of different pre-professional degrees and experiences. Currently there is very little research with respect to whether certain pre-professional degrees or experiences have an impact of PA students’ overall success throughout the program. Purpose: The purpose of this study is to determine if Manitoba MPAS graduates feel that their pre-professional degrees, healthcare/clinical experiences, and non-healthcare/clinical experiences had an impact on their success in their didactic year, clinical year, and first job as a PA in relation to the CanMEDs-PA competencies. Methods: This quality improvement cross-sectional survey response study used an online survey sent to Manitoba MPAS graduates to obtain quantitative data and emergent themes related to the perceived impact of pre-professional degrees, healthcare/clinical experience and non-healthcare/clinical experience on student success. Results: Forty-seven survey responses met the inclusion criteria to be included in the study. Pre-professional degrees were felt to be most impactful during didactic year, with 76.59% of respondents reporting this. Of those who had healthcare/clinical experience, 80.00% felt this to have an impact during their didactic year, clinical year and first job as a PA. Non-healthcare/clinical experience were felt to be most impactful on clinical year, as noted by 65.71% of respondents who had this experience. Conclusion: Manitoba MPAS graduates felt their pre-professional degrees and experiences had an impact on their success in their didactic year, clinical year and, to a lesser extent, their first job as a PA. Specific degrees or experiences over others were not noted to be particularly influential in aiding in this success.