PA History Comes to Life in New Online Module

PAEA is excited to announce a new online education module created in partnership with the Physician Assistant History Society (PAHx). This module provides information and resources about the historical development of the PA profession, including how to access the PA History Educational Toolkit.

“Professional history is the collective stories of individuals working and struggling together for a common good. As mentors and role models for future generations of PAs, PA educators need to be well-versed in PA history,” said Reginald D. Carter, PhD, PA, historian emeritus of PAHx. “Understanding and appreciating the history of the PA profession is essential for students to develop their own professional identity.”

ARC-PA Accreditation Standard B2.17 requires programs to include instruction about the historical development of the PA profession. We hope that this module will assist PA educators in finding ways to include this information in their program’s curriculum. As part of the module, you will find a cyberhunt — a website scavenger hunt — activity that you can use on its own or download and assign to your students.

“Learning about the history of the PA profession is vital to foster pride in our profession,” said Deborah Atherton Gerbert, MS, PA-C, board president of PAHx. “You will learn so much and see faces and facts from the past that really bring PA history to life. All PAs and PA students will enjoy the scavenger hunt.”

Carter added, “[Programs] should use the resources available through the PA History Society’s website and archives to make sure PA students are proud heirs of past accomplishments and highly motivated future clinicians and leaders.”

You can access the module in the PAEA Digital Learning Hub.

PAEA would like to extend a special thanks to Lori Konopka-Sauer, managing director of PAHx; Michelle Schabowski, MISI, PAHx archivist; as well as PAEA staff Rachel Kuliani, Karen Hills, and Terry Seelinger who all played a role in bringing the PA history content to life.

For more information about PAHx or if you have questions about their educational resources, visit their website or email them at

This activity has been reviewed by the AAPA Review Panel and is compliant with AAPA CME Criteria. This activity is designated for 1 AAPA Category 1 CME credits. Approval is valid from 8/13/2020 to 8/16/2021. PAs should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation. AAPA reference number: CME-200885.