PA Week Ambassador Interviews Day 5: PA Thank-A-Thon
Being founded by a female Physician Assistant, Lara Francisco PA-C, every year from October 6-12, we celebrate National PA Week, which recognizes the PA profession and its contributions to the nation’s health. This year, we are featuring many of our esteemed PA Ambassadors who prove that PAs are essential.
During the COVID-19 response, PAs have stepped up like never before, showing how flexible, adaptable, and collaborative they can be. They have been testing, diagnosing, and treating COVID-19 patients, conducting telemedicine visits, redeploying to different specialties, or continuing to provide healthcare for those who need it most.
So in honor of those PAs who are a part of this special medical community, we’ve asked some of our Ambassadors from around the country to help raise awareness of their profession by sharing with us their inspirations and insights into being a physician assistant. Be sure to tune in to their features on our social media, and show your support by posting with today’s theme: PA Thank-A-Thon #PAWeek
Lauren Mitschrich, PA-C
Dermatology & Plastic Surgery
Lauren is a board certified Physician Assistant specializing in Dermatology and Plastic Surgery. She was inspired by the thoughtfulness and intelligence she witnessed of a sports medicine PA’s care, and quickly concluded the profession was a dream job for her. Because she loves team-based medicine, she and her supervising physician bounce ideas and treatment plans off each other daily in order to achieve the optimal result. She is known for the bond she forms with her patients and he “natural” aesthetic approach.
//Wearing the VERA G. Slim Fit Lab Coat
WHY ARE PAs ESSENTIAL?
Well honestly, my specialty isn’t essential. But I am an essential member of this specialty team. My practice is small - doc, PA, MA, manager. We are a lean and mean team and wouldn’t function without each one of us!
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME A PA?
A sports med PA named Jeff. He was the most caring, thoughtful, yet insanely smart provider I ever came across. He seemed to have it all together and the dream job. At the same time, EVERY SINGLE patient loved him.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT BEING A PA?
I absolutely love team-based medicine. My SP and I bounce ideas and treatment plans off each other daily. Lately, we bring each other in to our visits and see what the other one would do (without knowing the treatment plan) to achieve the optimal result! I just love it because with very different backgrounds, and a mutual respect, we achieve better results than our competitors because we treat our patients this way.
WHAT PA FOUNDATION/ CAUSES DO YOU SUPPORT AND WANT TO SPREAD AWARENESS FOR?
It is completely unrelated to my specialty, but it is called Urban Hope! My husband and I got involved with them when we lived in NYC. The entire goal of the organization is literacy for young kids. There are many studies that demonstrate that literacy before 2nd grade is a KEY predictor in adult outcomes.
WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS THE MOST COMMON MISCONCEPTIONSURROUNDING YOUR PROFESSION YOU’D LIKE TO DEBUNK?
Oh, this is a question I get every week - “so when do you become a doctor?”
Many people think we are residents or doctors in training... and all of us chose this profession because we DID NOT want to be a doctor!
WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR PARTNERSHIP WITH YOUR SUPERVISING PHYSICIAN?
Described above, but the collaboration game we play!
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO PA STUDENTS?
Push, push, push.... hard. Don’t take no for an answer! Get the job you want. I used every dollar left to my name to get a hotel room and car in the city I wanted to move. In a week, I walked in to >200 practices with resumes and said “you need a PA, and I’m your girl.” I got 2 call backs. BUT I landed my dream job! Sometimes, it takes grit!