Physician’s Assistant (PA)

Education to become a PA

(not currently offered in Alberta)

The McMaster University Physician Assistant Education Program

Program Overview

In 2008, McMaster became one of the first institutions in Canada to launch a Physician Assistant Education Program. The inaugural class of 21 students will pioneer a new role in health care provision in the province. The PA program will lead to the Bachelor of Health Sciences (Physician Assistant). The program will be taught using inquiry and problem-based-learning, which enhance each student’s ability to think critically, solve problems, demonstrate initiative and independence in practice, and promote lifelong learning. The content and competency objectives of the program were defined with reference to the National Occupational Competency Profile (NCP) developed by the Canadian Association of Physician Assistants (CAPA).

Who should apply?

If you are looking for a career in health care and are an energetic self-motivated individual with a minimum of two years of university education this may be the program for you.

More information on application requirements, processes and fees, visit:

More information on the Physician Assistant Initiative in Ontario is available on the HealthForceOntario website.

The University of Manitoba – Physician Assistant Education Program (PAEP)

Program Overview

In 2008, the Province welcomed the first class of PA students to the Physician Assistant Education Program (PAEP) at the University of Manitoba. A joint partnership between the faculties of Graduate Studies and Medicine, the two-year program is the only Master’s level program in Canada. The education and training the students receive in this program enable them to practice in a wide range of health care settings.

For more information on the program, please visit:

Physician Assistant Regulation in Manitoba

Manitoba is currently the only jurisdiction in Canada that has specific legislation in place regarding Physician Assistant (PA) practice.Physician Assistants are regulated by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba (CPSM), and have their own distinct category of registration.

Resources for Physician Assistants in Manitoba

For further questions regarding PA’s in Manitoba contact the PA/ CA Director.

Alberta Health Services and PA Opportunities

Physician Assistants (PA) are academically prepared and highly skilled health care professionals who provide a broad range of medical services. PAs act as health care extenders, working under the supervision of a physician, to complement existing services and aid in improving patient access to health care. PAs are nationally represented by the Canadian Association of Physician Assistants (CAPA) and, in Alberta, must be certified and registered with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta (CPSA).

The PA’s scope of practice is determined on an individual basis and formally outlined in a practice contract or agreement among the supervising physician, the PA and the facility where the PA will work.
• Activities may include conducting patient interviews, histories and physical examinations; diagnosing and treating illnesses, performing selected diagnostic and therapeutic interventions or procedures; and counseling patients on preventive health care.
• A PA’s scope of practice may also include patient education, research and administrative services.

A PA is not a replacement for a physician, Nurse Practitioner (NP), Registered Nurse (RN), or a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). Rather, each of these professions have different abilities, skill sets, talents, and varying scopes of practice that all work together to provide Albertans with high-quality health care.

Taken from AHS page:

If you are interested in learning more about PAs, please visit the Canadian Association of Physician Assistants (CAPA) website.


Physician assistants provide patient care under the supervision of a physician registered for independent practice in Alberta (on the General Register or Provisional Register Conditional Practice). The College has a voluntary, non-regulated membership category for physician assistants.

Researchers/Research Assistants

Coming soon…