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August 9, 2017

 

National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants

12000 Findley Road, Suite 100

Johns Creek, GA  30097-7409

 

Dear Fellow PA Leader,

 

PAs for Tomorrow (PAFT) is an organization committed to the future of the PA profession.  From inception, PAFT has sought meaningful change in a profession that has grown far beyond original expectations.  As such, PAFT leadership know that NCCPA leaders are interested in many of the same ideals that advance the PA profession.  In early June, we requested the opportunity to open dialogue meaningful dialogue between our organization, a request that essentially been ignored.  Because of a lack of a meaningful response from the NCCPA, this letter is now an open letter.

 

The NCCPA announcement in early June openly supporting Optimal Team Practice (OTP) is important and notably applauded by PAFT leadership.  OTP originated from within PAFT, and it was incredibly gratifying to see its unanimous acceptance by the AAPA House of Delegates last month.  The NCCPA’s message of support will resonate with PAFT membership and most importantly, practicing PAs.  The NCCPA’s recent announcement to seek alternatives to the high-stakes PANRE by 2020 is also a welcome step to positively connecting with clinically practicing PAs.  PAFT acknowledges there is no organization more acutely aware of the significance this topic holds for the profession than the NCCPA. 

 

The PA profession truly stands at a crossroads – one where we are struggling to be true to our historical roots, but also one demanding that PAs embrace a future certain of only additional change.  The above two issues are key to the PA profession’s forward motion.  And they are both issues that will best succeed with a unified professional direction.  The PAFT stands ready to assist any organization seeking to bring the profession to a more unified position. The NCCPA has been open to input by the PA community in the past and PAFT is hopeful that our thoughts could be heard in the willing spirit they are offered.     

 

Despite many differences spanning specialty, geography and demographic, PAFT believes the PA profession, as a whole, supports the following key concepts:

·       The profession values the pillars of organization construct of the PA profession – the NCCPA, the AAPA, individual state and federal chapters, the PAEA, PA educators, and the ARC-PA.  Each who have both shared and unique priorities.

·       The profession supports a NON high-stakes option for recertification.

·       The profession supports an “uncoupling” of recertification from licensure.

·       The profession supports a recertification process that reinforces and reflects PA clinical practice, whether in specialty or primary care.

·       The profession supports creation of a recertification method that maintains mobility between specialties, but accounts for specialty practice.  

·       The profession supports the position that our certifying body does not lobby the legislative body in a state.  

·       The profession would welcome any support the NCCPA could offer in the first states achieving, or trying to achieve OTP

 

There is optimism for the future and leadership of all PA organizations have an opportunity to harness a rapidly declining momentum to create a new national conversation.  As an organization, PAFT is in a unique position to offer a nuanced channel of communication and opportunity between other PA organizations as well as to the greater PA community. 

 

The PAFT supports a more positive and balanced conversation, particularly on topics specific to NCCPA and its interest in serving the public.  It can be done and it should be done for the common benefit of the PA profession. 

 

PAFT has withheld formal public comment on recent NCCPA specific issues.  We are not removing our request for a meeting to discuss how PAFT and NCCPA can work together to affect positive change for our profession.  PAFT’s leadership intends to make public commentary in the near future and would prefer to do so after conversation with NCCPA leadership.  To best understand the NCCPA’s perspective and to impart a clear and accurate message to the greater PA community, we prefer to do so with NCCPA input.  In an effort to respect open dialogue, we also extend a good faith effort to offer our public commentary on only topics and information appropriate for public conversation.

 

Sincerely,

 

  

 

PAFT Board of Directors

Frank Crosby, President


PAs for Tomorrow is a  professional organization for all PAs of all specialties.  It represents the future interests of all PAs, providing a vocal core group of PAs committed to seeing the PA profession reach its deserved place among America's health care providers and advocating for their role as providers of high-quality, cost-effective, comprehensive and patient-centered health care. 

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