89.1 WEMU

Eastern Michigan University And Saint Joseph Mercy Health System Training Physician Assistants

Jun 9, 2014

The combination of an aging population and retiring doctors is creating a shortage of primary care physicians.  Eastern Michigan University and Saint Joseph Mercy Health System are teaming up on a new Physician Assistant program that will help address the problem.  

Credit Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Saint Joe's President and CEO Rob Casalou thinks the hospital's simulation center will play an important role in the training.  He says the mannequins in the facility can be controlled by professors to give students a real life experience before they even see a patient.

EMU received over 600 applications for the 20 spots available in the first class.  The students began the intensive 24 month program just over a month ago.  The program is expected to expand to 30 students next class and then 40 in following years.

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— Andrew Cluley is the Ann Arbor beat reporter, and anchor for 89.1 WEMU News. Contact him at 734.487.3363 or email him acluley@emich.edu.