Physician Associates

Physician Associates (PAs) are clinical graduates trained in the medical model. They must pass an intensive two-year university course, at diploma or masters level, to learn clinical knowledge and skills after completing a three-year biomedical or healthcare related degree. They train in both the acute sector and primary care to gain a rounded patient-centred clinical experience. 

Working Locally

Within the Wessex region, since 2019, Bournemouth University and the University of Portsmouth offer a two-year Physician Associate Masters level programme, with placements across primary and secondary care.  HEE Wessex works with these organisations and placement providers to support the development of these new roles and how they can support with workforce challenges in a number of areas.

A preceptorship programme is in place to support newly qualified PAs working in the region and specific funding is available if their first role is within primary care. Please contact for more information.

Promotional Events
PA Advocate

We have recently appointed Dr Tahir Akbar to the role of Physician Associate Advocate within HEE Wessex. Dr Akbar is a Consultant Gastroenterologist working in Wessex.

This new role is to support organisations to understand the role of Physician Associates and engage them in exploring the opportunities and potential benefits of employing these roles within their own organisations.

Please contact for more information.

Useful Resources

The Health Careers website

For GP or practice managers, there’s a dedicated general practice employers page on the Faculty of Physician Associates website

Learning and development opportunities

To find out about learning and development opportunities available to Physician Associates, please visit the Learning and Development page.

Wellbeing and support

To find out about wellbeing and support provided within Wessex, please visit the Wellbeing and Support page.

Contact Us

To find out more or to be added to our Physician Associate mailing list please contact us via or follow us on Twitter at #WessexPA