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Following the May 24, 2021, vote by AAPA’s House of Delegates that passed a policy affirming “physician associate” as the official title for the PA profession, physician organizations across all specialties – including emergency medicine – have come out in opposition. SEMPA has responded to the name change criticism and its concerns on how it could impact emergency medicine.
SEMPA responds to another divisive statement targeting postgraduate EMPAs with multiple signatories from our emergency medicine colleague representative organizations.
SEMPA has joined other leading organizations in releasing a joint statement in which emergency medicine and other leading medical associations, academics and psychiatry experts outline steps to support the mental health of emergency physicians and other health professionals currently risking their lives to treat patients during this pandemic.
In light of recent acts of violence toward African Americans, including the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, the Society of Emergency Medicine Physician Assistants (SEMPA) denounces racism and condemns all senseless acts of violence.
The SEMPA Board of Directors instituted a policy statement on the title of the physician assistant to collectively and appropriately identify and name advanced practice providers, speicifcally physician assistants and nurse practitioners.
The Society of Emergency Medicine Physician Assistants (SEMPA) became aware of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine (AAEM) position statement on advanced practice providers (APPs), which includes emergency medicine physician assistants (EMPAs).
As the national organization representing EMPAs who practice in emergency departments across the country, SEMPA is disappointed that AAEM chose not to reach out to or involve SEMPA in any way for input when updating its position statement. Had they done so, SEMPA could have helped provide valuable information about EMPA practice patterns across the country that could have better informed their policy.
Since the introduction of the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) Certificate of Added Qualifications (CAQ) in Emergency Medicine, emergency medicine physicians and physician assistants have looked to SEMPA for guidance in whether obtaining this certificate is appropriate for EMPA practice. With the release of its official statement on NCCPA’s CAQ, SEMPA is endorsing the CAQ as an appropriate measure of knowledge of emergency medical content for physician assistants practicing in emergency medicine.
As the national organization representing emergency medicine physician assistants (PAs), who practice in academic and community emergency departments across the country, the Society of Emergency Medicine Physician Assistants (SEMPA) fully supports postgraduate education programs for PAs.
SEMPA recognizes and endorses the ACEP Ultrasound Guidelines: Emergency, Point-of-Care, and Clinical Ultrasound Guidelines in Medicine released June 2016. ACEP recognizes that emergency ultrasound is a fundamental skill in the practice of emergency medicine. SEMPA believes that emergency medicine physician assistants should be credentialed and granted privileges by their institutions to perform emergency ultrasound, if they have met the same training guidelines as emergency physicians, as outlined by the ACEP 2016 Ultrasound Guidelines.
SEMPA is in agreement with the ACEP policy titled, Emergency Ultrasound Certification by External Entities. SEMPA believes that certification for point-of-care ultrasound by a non-emergency medicine external body, organization, or society may negatively affect the ability of emergency medicine physician assistants to utilize this important diagnostic skill.