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About physician assistants

Physician assistants are health care professionals who provide a range of health services to patients, delivering preventive and continuous care to manage patients’ health. Their work includes conducting patient interviews, performing physical assessments and taking medical histories; performing or ordering diagnostic tests and interpreting results; formulating and implementing treatment plans and monitoring patients’ progress; inoculating and vaccinating patients; performing and assisting in surgery; providing health maintenance education; and participating in research activities.

Physician assistants usually work in private practices, hospitals and clinics.

CIHI collects high-level, standardized information on 30 groups of health care professionals in Canada. This includes information on their supply, distribution, demographics and regulatory environment. To find out more about CIHI’s health workforce data, visit the Health Workforce Database metadata page.

Learn more about physician assistants in our recent release on Canada’s health care providers.