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Several major media outlets have covered physician associate stories in the news today, including the News Agents Podcast.

The Guardian newspaper carries a story and interview with physician associate Sammy Chan, who is one of 40 physician associates employed at the Royal Berkshire foundation trust in Reading.

The full article touches on several themes, including the supervision of physician associates, professional identity and PA training. The article mentions a recent BMA survey that highlighted confusion about the PA role, and the recent online toxicity that the PA profession has faced.

The article includes a quote from an anonymous junior doctor in ear, nose and throat (ENT) services, who says that the physician associate in her department has helped her training not hindered it. “I haven’t felt that my training opportunities have been threatened at all. In fact, quite the opposite.” she says. “[The PA] has actually freed me up to do more of the things I wanted to do rather than taking opportunities from me.”

Physician associates were also a topic of discussion on the popular News Agents podcast. The show is a British daily podcast produced by Persephonica for Global Media & Entertainment. It is presented by Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel.

The episode, which you can listen to here, makes reference to Jon Sopel’s time living in America where he was treated by a physician assistant, and debates whether the profession’s title should revert back to ‘assistant’ from associate.

The podcast includes an interview with Doctor Rachel Clarke who is an NHS palliative care doctor.

Dr Clarke says that her concerns are for patient safety. “Physician associates are being used as doctor substitutes.” Dr Clarke warns “crucially patients have no idea this is happening, and haven’t consented to it.”

The podcast, which you can listen to the full episode here, does not interview a physician associate.

LBC, a British phone-in and talk radio station owned and operated by Global, have also covered a news story on physician associates today.

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