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Australia to try US-style physician assistants

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.a1407 (Published 21 August 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a1407
  1. Melissa Sweet
  1. 1New South Wales

    The government of Queensland plans to recruit 10 physician assistants from the United States as part of a trial to assess their effect on the delivery of healthcare services.

    The move follows a lobbying campaign by some senior medical and academic leaders who think that physician assistants may help to alleviate shortages in the workforce, particularly in rural, remote, and other areas with few doctors.

    US physician assistants already teach medical students at James Cook University in Townsville, and a hospital in Adelaide is planning to recruit them.

    The year long trial, which is expected …

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