Title

Exploring residents' perceptions of PA and NP roles and barriers to collaboration

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

5-1-2021

Journal

JAAPA : official journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants

Volume

34

Issue

5

DOI

10.1097/01.JAA.0000742972.71042.72

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Developing competencies for interprofessional collaboration, including understanding other professionals' roles on interprofessional teams, is an essential component of medical education. This study explored resident physicians' perceptions of the clinical roles and responsibilities of physician assistants (PAs) and NPs in the clinical learning environment. METHODS: Using a constructivist grounded theory approach, semistructured interviews were conducted with 15 residents in one academic setting. Transcripts were analyzed using an iterative approach to inductive coding. RESULTS: Participants typically perceived PAs' and NPs' roles as being "like a resident," less commonly as independent clinicians, and rarely as collaborators. Barriers to understanding PA and NP roles and perceiving them as collaborators included the lack of preparatory instruction about PAs and NPs, the hierarchical structure of medical education, and inadequate role modeling of interprofessional collaboration. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that barriers in the clinical learning environment and the structure of medical education itself may impede residents' learning about PAs and NPs and how to collaborate with them.

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