Increasing Access to Health Care
The MEDEX mission focuses on expanding access to healthcare for the medically underserved and in rural and remote settings throughout the five-state northwest service region. MEDEX is designed as a second-career program, enrolling students with prior clinical experience, which is the first step on the way toward becoming a highly skilled PA.
The MEDEX classroom (didactic) curriculum has grown and developed throughout the program’s history (since 1969), with the consistent mission of training generalists who will most flexibly increase access to healthcare. The competency-based design integrates and reinforces material across courses in an organ system approach.
The MEDEX clinical year builds on the program mission. The core experience is a 4-month primary care continuity experience called the preceptorship. Additional 4-week clinical experiences include emergency medicine, general surgery, inpatient internal medicine, behavioral medicine, a medically underserved rotation and one elective. All of these rotations develop and reinforce a generalist skill set for those who are planning careers in primary care.
The primary care preceptorship emphasizes the relationship between the supervising physician and the PA student, and also includes a full-day site visit and evaluation by a MEDEX faculty member. Preceptorships are also utilized as a recruitment strategy for primary care clinics, who often choose to employ PA students who trained there.
MEDEX Graduation Video 2014
In August of 2014, 119 students graduated from MEDEX Northwest from across four sites: Seattle, Spokane, Yakima and Anchorage. This short video captures the celebratory moment, when two years of personal sacrifice, intensive study and clinical rotations opens up the profession of physician assistant to these individuals.
The MEDEX application is now closed for the 2014/2015 cycle! All CASPA and MEDEX supplemental applications submitted before the deadline will be reviewed and all applicants will be provided application status by email.
For all applicants planning to apply in 2015/2016 the application cycle opens in May with a final deadline of October 1st for enrollment the following year.
A Message From Ruth Ballweg
Greetings—This is an informal announcement to let you know about some upcoming changes in my career/life. After 29 years as the leader of the MEDEX Program, I’ve decided to “step down” as of May 1, 2014. As you can imagine, this is a huge, “difficult”, but also “positive” decision…
MEDEX 2014 WAPA Reception
MEDEX 2014 Scholarship Awards Reception on April 26 – Part of the WAPA Spring Conference
The annual MEDEX/WAPA Alumni Awards and Student Scholarship reception will be held on Saturday April 26, 2014 from 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm in rooms Evergreen 1 & 2 at the SeaTac Doubletree Inn. The reception will start with light refreshments and a cash bar, with the awards ceremony to follow. All MEDEX Northwest alumni and WAPA conference attendees are welcome to attend.
New MEDEX “Engagement” Video
What does it take to become a physician assistant? Apart from the basic clinical skills of medicine, one must cultivate trusting relationships with the patients. During their first year at MEDEX Northwest, PA students learn the necessary clinical skills in the classroom setting— taking a medical history, and conducting medical examinations. Then they apply this learning to their first patients: elderly, high-functioning residents at local retirement homes.
MEDEX Seattle Opens New Classroom
On January 6th, the current MEDEX Seattle didactic students returned from winter break to a new classroom, effectively doubling the size of the previous space.
PAs and the ACA
A recently published article in Academic Medicine examines the potential impact of the Affordable Care Act on large medical education programs, including the University of Washington. Entire sections address the critical importance of physician assistants in implementation of the ACA.
The Interactive Classroom
“The Interactive Classroom” details the thought, care, and planning that goes into designing the didactic year classroom experience for MEDEX students. Four faculty discuss the move from a purely lecture-based curriculum to physician assistant instruction that engages on multiple levels— kinetically, experientially, and as a team. Members of Seattle Class 46 are featured.
MEDEX Tacoma Campus Now Open
MEDEX Northwest is proud to have opened its newest site—for 28 students—on the campus of the University of Washington, Tacoma. Our opening ceremony on September 16th honored the entering students, but also the leaders throughout the community who have helped to make this happen.