A history of PAs in the US Public Health Service

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Abstract

Since 1798, the men and women of the Commissioned Corps of the US Public Health Service (USPHS), one of the seven US uniformed services, have served on the front lines of public health. Two hundred years after the start of the USPHS, the first physician assistant (PA) entered the service to carry on the tradition of protecting, promoting, and advancing the health and safety of the nation. These dedicated clinicians are involved in healthcare delivery to underserved and vulnerable populations, disease control and prevention, biomedical research, food and drug regulation, and national and international response efforts for natural and man-made disasters. This article describes how PAs in the Commissioned Corps of the USPHS have impacted the health and safety of not only the United States but also the international community.

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