Applicants must have no less than one (1) year – equivalent to 2,000 hours – of paid, recent experience. We strongly recommend applying with 4,000 hours (2 years) clinical experience to be more competitive, as our accepted students average 6.5 years in clinical fields.
Experience in the direct delivery of medical care to patients must be completed by the September 1st deadline to be eligible to apply in the current admission cycle. All clinical experience hours must be entered into the CASPA application to be considered for meeting the clinical experience requirement. Please note: Hours accrued after September 1st will not be considered.
Common, competitive, direct patient care experience includes the following:
- Military medicine (medic, corpsman, pararescueman, etc.)
- Emergency medicine (EMT, paramedic, emergency department technician, etc.)
- Nursing (registered nurse, license practical nurse, certified nursing assistant, etc.)
- Medical assistant
- Community health aide/practitioner (CHA/CHP)
Other acceptable allied health experience includes:
- Mental health worker
- International medical graduates
- Laboratory/medical technician
- Radiology technician
- Clinical research
- Emergency room or clinical scribe.
While these allied health fields may meet the clinical prerequisite, they are also considered specialized.
The positions that are NOT considered direct patient care and will not fulfill the MEDEX clinical prerequisite include:
- Medical billing
- Medical records
- Medical interpreter
- Medical transcriptionist
- Patient scheduler
- Anything considered administrative in nature
Experience must be from paid position(s) and not volunteer work. Exceptions include work as a paramedic or EMT when all emergency services are provided only on an all-volunteer basis. Clinical experience gained through a training program, as a student, does not count toward satisfying the 2,000-hour paid requirement.
MEDEX Northwest strongly encourages spending time shadowing physician assistants. Shadowing experience is valuable in adding an understanding of the PA role in healthcare and expands the understanding of primary care. Shadowing experience is a great way to supplement your experience but does not replace any required paid clinical time.