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Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Manual
 

Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Manual

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    Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Manual Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Manual Document Transcript

    • Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Manual Saint Francis University CERMUSA 117 Evergreen Drive Loretto, PA 15940 Phone: 814-472-3389 Fax: 814-472-2830 Web address: www.francis.edu/afpap Email: afpap@cermusa.francis.edu
    • Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Saint Francis University CERMUSA 117 Evergreen Drive Loretto, PA 15940 Phone: 814-472-3389 Fax: 814-472-2830 Web address: www.francis.edu/afpap Email: afpap@cermusa.francis.edu Program Manual Contact Information: Program Director: Melissa Kagarise, DHSc, PA-C mkagarise@cermusa.francis.edu 814-472-2703 Medical Director: Kip Benko, MD kbenko@cermusa.francis.edu Administrative Assistant/Admissions Coordinator: Jean Kline jkline@cermusa.francis.edu 814-472-2708 Network Support Specialist: Shawn Stevens idcsupport@cermusa.francis.edu 1-866-476-0382 Dean School of Health Science: Patricia Fitzgerald, PhD, CSCS pfitzgerald@francis.edu 814-472-3121 AFPAP Program Manual Page 2
    • Table of Contents Mission and Vision……………………………………………………….………….4 Program Overview……………………………………………………….………….4 PA Profession…………………………………………………………….…………5 Values…………………………………………………………….…………5 Code of Ethics………………………………………………………….……6 Graduate Student Competencies…………………………………………….………7 Statement of Nondiscrimination……………………………………………….……8 Program Technical Standards…………………………………………….………….9 Distance Learning……………………………………………………………………9 Application and Admission…………………………………………………………13 Program Paradigm………………………………………………………………….15 Didactic……………………………………………………………………..16 Clinical……………………………………………………………………...19 Student Assessment…………………………………………………………………23 Program Matriculation……………………………………………………………...24 Academic Policies………………………………………………………….……….26 Student Responsibilities…………………………………………………………….29 Graduation Requirements………………………………………………….………..33 Resources……………………………………………………………………………33 AFPAP Program Manual Page 3
    • Mission/Vision & Philosophy Our Mission: Through an innovative technological infrastructure, we will prepare individuals from the armed forces to become health practitioners who will provide competent and compassionate healthcare to serve as leaders in affecting health disparities worldwide. Our Vision: The Armed Forces Physician Assistant program faculty, students and graduates will: Be rooted in Franciscan Values Be advocates for the needy and marginalized Be life-long learners dedicated to continuous quality improvement Provide service to culturally diverse populations Be leaders in the profession Philosophy of Pedagogy: Faculty in the Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program are encouraged to creatively utilize the latest in educational media and online course management tools to provide the highest quality instruction to students in a virtual classroom setting. Pedagogical strategies will seek to engage the student in an active teaching-learning environment that encourages processing of course content into effective, working knowledge of diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to patient care. Physician Assistant Education and the AFPAP The first Physician Assistant (PA) training program was founded in 1965 at Duke University by Dr. Eugene Stead. The first PA students were mostly military medics (or corpsmen) who were able to expand on the knowledge and experience they received in the military to move into a role in primary care. Returning to the professions origin, Saint Francis University has developed this distance based PA program to provide military health personnel an opportunity to extend their training in pursuit of a Physician Assistant degree. The Armed Forces Physician Assistant program (AFPAP) is a distance learning program designed for military health personnel in preparation for post military careers. The goal of this program is to provide an accessible academic program to bridge the gap in the transition from military to civilian practice. The AFPAP is a 60 credit, part-time distance learning program spanning 24 months of didactic instruction and 12 months of clinical experience training. The distance based design of this program allows students to remain within their military/civilian communities sustaining their current positions. Content will be delivered through a robust AFPAP Program Manual Page 4
    • technological infrastructure utilizing a variety of synchronous and asynchronous applications. Virtual classroom software and content management systems will provide the foundation for content delivery and objective assessment. Clinical experiences will be completed during the students third year of program enrollment. Students will be required to document a minimum number of clinical experience hours in primary care, psychiatry, surgery, women’s health and pediatrics. The program will arrange the clinical experiences to be completed predominately within military medical facilities. Upon successful completion of the AFPAP, graduates will be awarded a Master of Physician Assistant Science degree. Graduates will then be eligible to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination to obtain their PA-C designation. Statement of Values of the Physician Assistant Profession Physician assistants hold as their primary responsibility the health, safety, welfare, and dignity of all human beings. Physician assistants uphold the tenets of patient autonomy, beneficence, nonmaleficence, and justice. Physician assistants recognize and promote the value of diversity. Physician assistants treat equally all persons who seek their care. Physician assistants hold in confidence the information shared in the course of practicing medicine. Physician assistants assess their personal capabilities and limitations, striving always to improve their medical practice. Physician assistants actively seek to expand their knowledge and skills, keeping abreast of advances in medicine. Physician assistants work with other members of the health care team to provide compassionate and effective care of patients. Physician assistants use their knowledge and experience to contribute to an improved community. Physician assistants respect their professional relationship with physicians. Physician assistants share and expand knowledge within the profession. Taken from American Academy of Physician Assistants Guidelines for Ethical Conduct for the Physician Assistant Profession (Adopted 2000, amended 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2008) website http://www.aapa.org/manual/22- EthicalConduct.pdf AFPAP Program Manual Page 5
    • Code of Ethics Code of Ethics of the Physician Assistant Profession The American Academy of Physician Assistants recognizes its responsibility to aid the profession in maintaining high standards in the provision of quality and accessible health care services. The following principles delineate the standards governing the conduct of physician assistants in their professional interactions with patients, colleagues, other health professionals and the general public. Realizing that no code can encompass all ethical responsibilities of the physician assistant, this enumeration of obligations in the Code of Ethics is not comprehensive and does not constitute a denial of the existence of other obligations, equally imperative, though not specifically mentioned. Physician Assistants shall be committed to providing competent medical care, assuming as their primary responsibility the health, safety, welfare and dignity of all humans. Physician Assistants shall extend to each patient the full measure of their ability as dedicated, empathetic health care providers and shall assume responsibility for the skillful and proficient transactions of their professional duties. Physician Assistants shall deliver needed health care services to health consumers without regard to sex, age, race, creed, socio-economic and political status. Physician Assistants shall adhere to all state and federal laws governing informed consent concerning the patient's health care. Physician Assistants shall seek consultation with their supervising physician, other health providers, or qualified professionals having special skills, knowledge or experience whenever the welfare of the patient will be safe-guarded or advanced by such consultation. Supervision should include ongoing communication between the physician and the physician assistant regarding the care of all patients. Physician Assistants shall take personal responsibility for being familiar with and adhering to all federal/state laws applicable to the practice of their profession. Physician Assistants shall provide only those services for which they are qualified via education and/or experiences and by pertinent legal regulatory process. Physician Assistants shall not misrepresent in any manner, either directly or indirectly, their skills, training, professional credentials, identity or services. Physician Assistants shall uphold the doctrine of confidentiality regarding privilege patient information, unless required to release such information by law or such information becomes necessary to protect the welfare of the patient or the community. AFPAP Program Manual Page 6
    • Physician Assistants shall strive to maintain and increase the quality of individual health care service through individual study and continuing education. Physician Assistants shall have the duty to respect the law, to uphold the dignity of the physician assistant profession and to accept its ethical principles. The physician assistant shall not participate in or conceal any activity that will bring discredit or dishonor to the physician assistant profession and shall expose, without fear or favor, any illegal or unethical conduct in the medical profession. Physician Assistants, ever cognizant of the needs of the community, shall use the knowledge and experience acquired as professionals to contribute to an improved community. Physician Assistants shall place service before material gain and must carefully guard against conflicts of professional interest. Physician Assistants shall strive to maintain a spirit of cooperation with their professional organizations and the general public Taken from American Academy of Physician Assistants Guidelines for Ethical Conduct for the Physician Assistant Profession (Adopted 2000, amended 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2008) website http://www.aapa.org/manual/22- EthicalConduct.pdf Student Competencies The Physician Assistant profession defines the specific knowledge, skills, and attitudes that are required by practitioners of the profession. Educational curriculum must provide a comprehensive program for physician assistants to acquire and demonstrate these competencies. The competencies below reflect the expectations as they pertain to graduates of the Armed Forces Master of Physician Assistant Science program. 1. MEDICAL KNOWLEDGE General Definition: Medical knowledge includes an understanding of pathophysiology, patient presentation, differential diagnosis, patient management, surgical principles, health promotion and disease prevention. Physician assistants must demonstrate core knowledge about established and evolving biomedical and clinical sciences and the application of this knowledge to patient care in their area of practice. In addition, physician assistants are expected to demonstrate an investigatory and analytic thinking approach to clinical situations. 2. INTERPERSONAL & COMMUNICATION SKILLS General Definition: Interpersonal and communication skills encompass verbal, nonverbal and written exchange of information. Physician assistants must demonstrate interpersonal AFPAP Program Manual Page 7
    • and communication skills that result in effective information exchange with patients, their patients families, physicians, professional associates, and the health care system. 3. PATIENT CARE General Definition: Patient care includes age-appropriate assessment, evaluation and management. Physician assistants must demonstrate care that is effective, patient-centered, timely, efficient and equitable for the treatment of health problems and the promotion of wellness. 4. PROFESSIONALISM General Definition: Professionalism is the expression of positive values and ideals as care is delivered. Foremost, it involves prioritizing the interests of those being served above one’s own. Physician assistants must know their professional and personal limitations. Professionalism also requires that PAs practice without impairment from substance abuse, cognitive deficiency or mental illness. Physician assistants must demonstrate a high level of responsibility, ethical practice, sensitivity to a diverse patient population and adherence to legal and regulatory requirements. 5. PRACTICE-BASED LEARNING AND IMPROVEMENT General Definition: Practice-based learning and improvement includes the processes through which clinicians engage in critical analysis of their own practice experience, medical literature and other information resources for the purpose of self-improvement. Physician assistants must be able to assess, evaluate and improve their patient care practices. 6. SYSTEMS-BASED PRACTICE General Definition: Systems-based practice encompasses the societal, organizational and economic environments in which health care is delivered. Physician assistants must demonstrate an awareness of and responsiveness to the larger system of health care to provide patient care that is of optimal value. PAs should work to improve the larger health care system of which their practices are a part. A detailed description of each competency is available on the web. Nondiscrimination Statement and No Harassment Policy Saint Francis University, inspired by its Franciscan and Catholic identity, values equality of opportunity, human dignity, racial, cultural and ethnic diversity, both as an educational institution and as an employer. Accordingly, the University prohibits and does not engage in discrimination or harassment on the basis of gender, age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual AFPAP Program Manual Page 8
    • orientation, marital status, disability, veteran status, or any protected classification. The University is committed to this policy based upon its values and in compliance with federal and state laws. This policy applies to all programs and activities of the University, including, but not limited to, admission and employment practices, educational policies, scholarship and loan programs and athletic or other University sponsored programs. Inquiries or complaints may be addressed to Ms. Heather Meck, Chief Human Resources Officer/Affirmative Action/Title IX Coordinator, Saint Francis University,102 Raymond Hall, Loretto, PA 15940 (814) 472-3264. Technical Standards for Program Admission, Progression and Graduation Technical standards are the skills, abilities, and attributes necessary for students to complete their physician assistant educational training and ultimately enter clinical practice. The Armed Forces Physician Assistant program will not discriminate against qualified individuals but will expect all applicants and students to meet certain minimum academic and technical standards. In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act, reasonable accommodations will be provided to qualified individuals with a disability. The Armed Forces Physician Assistant program seeks to graduate students who will have the knowledge and skills to function in a broad variety of clinical situations and render a wide spectrum of patient care. The following technical standards have been developed to ensure that the candidate possess the necessary skills, abilities and attributes in areas of observation, communication, motor skill, intellectual abilities, and behavior. These are pre-requisites for entrance to, progression through, and graduation from the Armed Forces Physician Assistant program. The complete technical standards are available on the web. Distance Learning and Technology In order to complete coursework during the program, students should meet the following minimum technology requirements: Systems Requirements Must have at high-speed bandwidth; examples – DSL, Cable modem, T1, Satellite, and Fractional T1. Windows Macintosh (MAC) Windows OS 2000, XP, Vista Mac OS 10.3 or higher Minimum 128 MB RAM or higher (256 kbps Minimum 128 MB RAM or higher (256 kbps recommended for the live streaming) recommended for the live streaming) Microsoft IE 6.0 SP1 or higher Apple Safari 2.0.4 or higher (Java enabled) FireFox 2.0 or later FireFox 2.0 or later Silverlight 1.0 (viewers will be promoted to install this when viewing a presentation) Windows compatible sound card Sound card Display resolution 800x600 pixels or greater Display resolution 800x600 pixels or greater AFPAP Program Manual Page 9
    • Java Script and cookies must be enabled Java Script and cookies must be enabled Additional software required for Blackboard: o Microsoft Word 97 -2007 o Microsoft Excel 97 - 2007 o Microsoft PowerPoint 97 -2007 o Apple Quick Time 6 (plug in) o Shockwave, Flash & Authorware o Adobe Acrobat Reader o Real Networks RealPlayer o Microsoft Media Player 9.0 or later Respondus Lock down browser may be utilized for secure testing purposes. Each course may require additional technologies and will be listed within the course syllabi. In particular, courses may utilize Wimba for interactive components. Students must have a headset with a boom microphone for this application. Web cameras may be utilized with Wimba and the following web cameras are supported: Brand Model Apple iSight Ecamm iMage webcam Creative Live! Cam Video IM Pro Live! Cam Voice WebCam Live! Motion WebCam Live! Ultra Logitech Orbit MP Pro 3000 Pro 4000 Pro 5000 QuickCam Express QuickCam Fusion QuickCam Messenger QuickCam Notebook Deluxe Microsoft LifeCam NX-6000 LifeCam VX-1000 LifeCam VX-6000 Unsupported Cameras Brand Model Creative iMage webcam Prior to enrolling in or completing any courses, students should complete the technology test page: http://paonline.cermusa.francis.edu/idctest. This test page will help the student to test their current computer and system in order to verify ability to access program materials and complete AFPAP Program Manual Page 10
    • coursework as required. Student should contact the network support specialist to resolve any issues that arise. Distance Learning Environments: 10 Questions for an Online Student Online learning is learner-driven, internet-based instruction delivered through an online platform. Students can access their online materials 24 hours a day, seven days a week via any Internet- accessible computer. Before beginning your education at a distance, take some time to consider the following questions: 1. Do you have the necessary equipment? The Armed Forces PA Program courses are delivered online through the Saint Francis University’s Blackboard learning management system. You will need frequent access to a high- speed Internet-accessible computer to complete your coursework. Many online students elect to print their assignments, instructions, study materials, etc. While a printer is not a requirement for taking an online course, it is certainly beneficial for online students. Digital cameras and a webcam may be used within a course to document your work and to conduct online meetings with faculty members. Be sure to check the course requirements as listed within the syllabus to ensure that you have all of the necessary equipment. 2. Do you have basic computer skills? To succeed in an online course, it is vitally important that you are comfortable working on a computer. Basic keyboarding skills are imperative for online students as the main forms of communication are conducted electronically. You do not need to be a computer expert to excel in an online course; rather, listed are some of the tasks that you will need to accomplish: send and receive email send, download and open attachments word processing skills organize files and folders on your computer download and rename files conduct internet research using a search engine attend online meetings and lectures 3. Will your schedule allow you to spend adequate time on this class? Many adult learners fulfill multiple roles including learner, parent, spouse, caregiver, employee, volunteer, etc. Each of these responsibilities requires time. If you budget your time wisely, you AFPAP Program Manual Page 11
    • can be successful in an online environment with the least amount of stress. No one can know your schedule like you. That sounds like a simple obvious statement, but many people don’t really know their schedules or how much time they have available. Track your time commitments and make a hard copy of a schedule you can follow. Keep your schedule handy and make adjustments. With distance education courses, the distinction between “class” time and “study” time blurs together. Students should expect to spend approximately six to nine hours each week on a distance education course. 4. Do you practice good time management skills? Stay on top of the coursework! It is too easy to put off the work for an on-line class; procrastination can be your biggest enemy. Everyone has some anxiety and stress when taking classes, handing in graded assignments, and taking tests. The best way to relieve anxiety is to avoid procrastination. With online courses, it's better to get your work done ahead of time so if problems occur, personal or technical, they can be resolved prior to the deadline. 5. How would you rate your overall study skills? Strong study skills are vital to your success in distance education courses. Knowing and practicing study skills that work best for YOU will aid in your success. Outlining class materials, creating your own review cards, and typing out your notes are all helpful study methods. 6. How would you rate your reading comprehension? Take a moment to evaluate your reading comprehension skills. The majority of online material is presented in written format. It's important to realize you cannot just skim over the content and be able to have a clear understanding of when assignments are due and what is expected of you. Strong reading comprehension skills are needed to succeed in an online course. 7. Are you comfortable communicating in a written forum? Most communication in an online class consists of written messages between you and the instructor along with discussions among class participants. If you have difficulty with an assignment or have questions, you must be willing to compose a message to inform the instructor. 8. Are you willing to ask questions? AFPAP Program Manual Page 12
    • There will be times when you have a question about your online course. Online instructors cannot read your body language and may not know if you are having problems. If you have a question, don’t be afraid to ask! In addition, be sure to describe the problem clearly so that your instructor or classmates can offer solutions. 9. Do you have an appropriate learning environment? Some students require a virtually silent place to study while others can concentrate regardless of what is going on around them. Designate a learning area that is comfortable for you to complete your coursework and where distractions can be minimized. Have everything you need nearby and handy. 10. Are you up to the challenge? In an online course, the instructor is a facilitator, not a lecturer. You must take the responsibility for your own learning. Information will be presented in your textbook and through lesson content, PowerPoint presentations, video, and Websites. It is up to you create your own learning path and monitor your own progress. Application and Admissions: In order to be eligible for admission, all applicants must: Be military personnel within a health-related field, stationed within the continental United States. • Be a United States citizen • Have a Baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution. Those with a baccalaureate degree from a non-U.S. institution must have their transcripts evaluated by an approved service. • Speak English. Applicants whose primary language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). • Have completed the following prerequisite courses with a grade of “C” or better o Anatomy and Physiology (8 credits) (must have lab). This requirement can be fulfilled as either two combined Anatomy and Physiology courses or individually as one course in Anatomy and one course in Physiology. o Chemistry (8 credits) (must have lab) – coursework must include general chemistry and organic or biochemistry. o Microbiology (4 credits) (must have lab) o Statistics (3 credits) o Psychology (3 credits) – Introductory or upper level psychology course o Medical Terminology Course (1-3 credits) AFPAP Program Manual Page 13
    • CLEP examination or advanced placement credit may not be used to meet any of the pre- requisite requirements. • Should have an overall GPA of 2.8 and a cumulative GPA for all prerequisite coursework of a 3.0. CLEP examination or advanced placement credit will not be figured into the GPA calculations. • Have, at minimum, four years of direct (“hands-on”) patient care experience in either a military or civilian healthcare setting. • Submit three letters of recommendation o Two letters of recommendation should be clinical references. These letters should be individuals who have been in a supervisory capacity (Military and/or Civilian Physicians, Physician Assistants, or Nurse Practitioners) who are familiar with the applicants’ health care experience. o One letter of recommendation should be a character reference attesting to the applicants suitability into the profession. This letter of recommendation can be from a non-related military or personal contact. • Must complete distance learning readiness assessment (online). • Must meet program technical standards. Applications will be accepted beginning January 1 of each year. Applicants will not be considered until all application material has been received and verified, including: completed online application form, 3 letters of recommendation, either through online submission or original document mailing, original transcripts must be received through mail from all training institutions, and as necessary, TOFEL and degree verification if Bachelors was obtained through non US school. The application can be found at http://paonline.cermusa.francis.edu The application form will become available on January 1st of each year. Applicants will have until April 1st to complete the online application form and submit all of their supporting materials. Applications that are incomplete at that time will not be considered. Complete application packages will be evaluated by the program on a revolving cycle as they are received. Applicants that score at or above the determined interview invite score will be invited to participate in a panel interview conducted through VTC or conference call technologies. These interviews will occur on a revolving basis from late January to mid-June. Scoring totals from the application and interview will aid in the final determination of the applicant’s eligibility by July 1st. Acceptance, wait list or denial letters will be sent to the student no later than July 1st for the mid-August program start date. Contact the Admissions Coordinator or the Program Director for additional details on the application process. AFPAP Program Manual Page 14
    • Distance Learning Readiness Assessment (READI) The Distance Learning Readiness Assessment (READI) is an online tool that will be utilized as a student self assessment tool as part of the admissions requirements. The system compares personal attributes, learning styles, reading rate and recall, technical competency, as well as typing speed and accuracy against research standards and provides a diagnostic report to the student as well as the system administrator. The system also provides remedial information for students to brush up on skills needed to succeed in online learning. It is required as a part of the application to help the student prepare as well as provide the faculty with background information on student strengths and weaknesses in distance learning. Additional information on the program can be found at http://www.readi.info/ Program Sequencing The AFPAP is a part-time distance learning program spanning 24 months of didactic instruction and 12 months of clinical experience training. The distance based design of this program allows students to remain within their military/civilian communities while the part-time design offers the ability for students to sustain current positions. Students will begin the program as a cohort in August of each year and simultaneously follow the prescribed 3 year program paradigm. The didactic training will follow the University semester schedule of Fall (August-December), Spring (January-May) and Summer (May- August) semesters. Students will be registered for 6 credits each semester during the didactic phase of training allowing the student to remain eligible for financial assistance. Didactic courses are sequentially arranged to build upon acquired knowledge through the progression of the curriculum. Content will be delivered through a robust technological infrastructure utilizing a variety of synchronous and asynchronous applications. Virtual classroom software and content management systems will provide the foundation for content delivery and objective assessment. Course sequencing has been planned to enable the student to develop the competencies necessary for practice. Sequential course offerings build upon previous knowledge and competencies and have been implemented to aid the student’s progress through the curriculum. Students are required to complete each course within the paradigm as defined through the paradigm. The program does not accept credit for courses completed elsewhere. The table below outlines the program paradigm. Year 1 Fall Semester PHYO 500 Healthcare System (2) Didactic PHYO 502 Ethical Issues in Healthcare (3) PHYO 504 Introduction to Pharmacology (1) Spring Semester PHYO 506 Evidence Based Medicine and Research Methodology (3) PHYO 508 Anatomy and Physiology (3) Summer Semester PHYO 510 History and Physical Examination I (3) AFPAP Program Manual Page 15
    • PHYO 514 Clinical Medicine I (3) Year 2 Fall Semester PHYO 518 Diversity in Healthcare (3) Didactic PHYO 520 Clinical and Surgical Procedures (2) PHYO 597 Special Topics (1) Spring Semester PHYO 511 History and Physical Examination II (2) PHYO 515 Clinical Medicine II (3) PHYO 522 Emergency Medicine (1) Summer Semester PHYO 524 Pediatrics and Geriatrics (3) PHYO 526 Behavioral Medicine (2) PHYO 530 Clinical Practice Skills (1) Year 3 Fall Semester PHYO 600 Primary Care I (8) Clinical Spring Semester PHYO 602 Primary Care II (4) PHYO 610 Medical Specialties I (4) PHYO 697 Summative Evaluation (0) P/F Summer Semester PHYO 612 Medical Specialties II (4) PHYO 620 Masters Capstone Experience (4) PHYO 698 Summative Remediation(0) P/F Students will officially graduate during the Universities August graduation date. Students have the opportunity to walk during commencement exercises held on campus in May. If a student wishes to attend the campus graduation ceremonies, they should contact AFPAP indicating such. The student will be directed to complete the appropriate forms through the registrars’ office. Didactic Training Didactic instructional content is based on meeting PA program accreditation standards while focusing on preparation for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE). A description for each didactic course is available in the University catalogue or on the web. Blackboard CE will be the content management system (CMS) for all course work. Students will receive a login ID and password for access to their courses. Courses will be located at http://courses.francis.edu . Training on how to navigate the Blackboard system will be available within the CMS through a variety of venues including instructional videos, written documents and online networks including Facebook and Twitter. Students should follow the technology support guidelines for problems arising within the BBCE8 course management system. Technology support guidelines are published at the AFPAP website. AFPAP Program Manual Page 16
    • Select Course Logistics Orientation Sessions: The first week of each academic year will consist of orientation activities. These activities will include course orientation, student expectations, advising, focused learning activities covering topics to include professionalism. These orientation sessions will be posted on Blackboard in the Program center. PHYO 530 Clinical Practice Skills (1) Students will be registered for the 1 credit Clinical Practice Skills course during the last semester of the didactic training (Year 2 summer). This course will allow the student to demonstrate proficiency in performing practical procedures in medical practice. The student will effectively perform select procedural and physical examination skills in an interactive environment, demonstrating the mastery of these skills. This course will require the student’s attendance at a selected conference location. Students will be required to attend this scheduled 3-4 days of intensive instruction and practical testing. During the conference, students will meet with program faculty to perform clinical practice skills testing, including history and physical examination skills, clinical procedure skills, and interpersonal and communication skills. The program will provide the necessary supplies to conduct the clinical skills procedures and complete the course requirements. Students will be required to bring their physical examination equipment, outlined within the course syllabus. The venue may be the IDC/IDMT Armed Forces Operational Medicine Symposium, typically scheduled in May/June. Arrangements for attendance at this symposium are the responsibility of the student and should begin early enough to gain clearances to attend. Students should contact the Program Director for extenuating circumstances prohibiting the student from attending. PHYO 597 Special Topics (1) Students will be registered for a Special Topics course during their didactic training. Under the guidance of faculty, this course will provide the student with an in-depth exploration of selected subjects in healthcare. Students will have the opportunity to integrate and apply their clinical knowledge and didactic coursework to develop their skills as leaders in the health profession affecting diverse populations. This course will cover selected topics as opportunity arises. It is anticipated that this course will incorporate lectures to provide the didactic training toward certification as a brain injury specialist. Student’s meeting the practice setting qualifications may choose to pursue the full training program. Certified Brain Injury Specialist Training Program: The certification program will follow training guidelines set forth by the Academy of Certified Brain Injury Specialists (ACBIS) http://www.acbis.pro/ . Instructional content will be presented AFPAP Program Manual Page 17
    • through the SFU Special Topics course by a certified brain injury specialist trainer. Students meeting the eligibility requirements (see below) can choose to pursue the certification and complete necessary clinical requirements at the Hiram G. Andrews Brain Rehabilitation Center in Johnstown, PA during the their clinical year of PA training. In conjunction with the PA program’s clinical coordinator, the student will arrange to complete the required hands on training in order to become eligible to complete the certification examination. Eligibility Requirements for Certified Brain Injury Specialist: 1. Applicants must have worked or have had direct contact with one or more individuals with a brain injury, 10 hours per week (25% of a 40 hour work week) for a minimum of 12 months. Part-time employment must accomplish the same amount of required contact time within a two-year period. 2. Experience can be employment and/or academic internship. 3. The qualifying experience must have included formal supervision or have been conducted while the applicant operated under a professional license. Volunteer work does not qualify. 4. The qualifying experience must have been obtained within the three years prior to the application. 5. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent. Detailed information on the course will be published on the AFPAP website as they are finalized. E*Value Patient Tracking and Evaluation System AFPAP will utilize the E*Value web and PDA-based clinical tracking system for documentation of clinical experience requirements and evaluation. Students will be required to utilize the PxDx Case Logger system to track patient encounters, procedures and diagnoses. In addition, clinical based evaluation requirements will be completed through this tracking system. Students will obtain an individual license to E*Value covered through student technology fees. Students will be required to utilize this program in a variety of ways throughout the curriculum. Specific requirements will be listed within each course syllabi as necessary. Physician Assistant Clinical Knowledge Rating and Assessment Tool (PACKRAT) The PACKRAT examination is an online test that consists of 225 questions following the current NCCPA Physician Assistant board examination blueprint. Students will be required to complete the PACKRAT examination several times throughout the program. This will be utilized as a tool to assist the program and the student in gauging their preparedness for clinical coursework and ultimately national board examination. Part of the program’s technology fee will be utilized to purchase the examination. AFPAP Program Manual Page 18
    • Students will complete the PACKRAT examination near the end of each year of the program. Based on semester sequencing, the student will complete the examination in the summer (May- August) of years 1-3. Completion of the examination at the end of year 1 will assess student knowledge base after the first year of didactic coursework and provide documentation for areas of continued educational need. This will be used to help the student focus efforts in learning through the second year of didactic training. In addition, the aggregate results will be utilized by program faculty to direct additional course content need. Any student not scoring at or above the national average on the PACKRAT will complete remedial assignments specific to the areas of weakness documented in the results. Students who score below the national average on the PACKRAT examination during their 2nd year will be required to complete a remedial exercise, reflective of the areas of weakness. This remediation may include; research and writing, completion of case scenarios either individually or with academic advisor, additional hours of clinical work in specified areas with prescribed documentation requirements, and/or other assignments. The student’s academic advisor will be responsible for verifying student completion. Clinical The third year of the program is designated for clinical experiences. The clinical year is designed to assess the student in primary care settings first and then will expand into medical specialties later in the year. Saint Francis University Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program Clinical Year Curriculum Fall (August-December) Spring (January-May) Summer (May-August) PHYO 600 Primary Care I PHYO 601 Primary Care II (4) PHYO 611 Medical Specialties (8) PHYO 610 Medical Specialties I II (4) (4) PHYO 620 Masters Capstone (4) PHYO 697 Summative PHYO 698 Summative Evaluation (0) Remediation During the clinical rotations, students will be under the supervision of a preceptor. The preceptor will be evaluating the student on their knowledge and skills while they are working with them. Students will utilize a patient tracking program, E*Value, to track their patient contact hours. Students are required to log a specified number of hours in each of the main areas. Primary care hours will encompass the majority of hours during the clinical year. A breakdown of the required hours is shown on the table below. AFPAP Program Manual Page 19
    • Clinical Area Required Hours Primary Care 750 hours Psychiatry (inpatient and outpatient settings) 80 hours Surgical Settings 80 hours Women’s Health (Obstetrics and Gynecology) 100 hours Pediatrics 100 hours Minimum total clinical experience hours 1,110 hours At the end of each clinical experience, students will complete an online multiple choice examination covering content that should have been learned within that setting. This will assess the student’s knowledge base in preparation for the national boards. Additionally, students will be required to submit various patient contact documents including; history and physical examination, SOAP notes, admission orders, etc. Clinical practice experiences for this program will be provided through civilian based medical facilities. Military based medical facilities including Veterans homes/hospitals may be utilized pending affiliation agreement processing. It is anticipated that long-term care exposure will be arranged with veterans care facilities. These experiences will be arranged by the program’s clinical coordinator. During the year 2 orientation week, the clinical coordinator will review clinical experience requirements and meet individually with each student to determine where the student will be located during the clinical year. The student will have the opportunity to identify potential preceptors with whom the student would like to complete any experiences during this time. This provides the opportunity for the program to develop affiliations with facilities near the student, decreasing the need for the student to relocate in order to complete experiences. The clinical coordinator will verify training affiliation agreements or initiate affiliations with facilities local to the student. Any experiences that cannot be completed local to the student will be scheduled at the sites established sites, around the US. Every attempt will be made to arrange clinical experiences in the facilities where the student is located. If all clinical experience requirements cannot be met at that facility, the program will arrange to have the remaining clinical experiences completed at any of the programs established sites across the United States. It will be the student’s responsibility to make appropriate arrangements to complete the experiences, as scheduled, regardless of location. It is the student’s responsibility to secure travel and housing arrangements for their clinical experiences. The program does not provide transportation to or housing at clinical sites. PHYO 600 Primary Care I (8) & PHYO 601 Primary Care II (4) The Primary Care preceptorship series will provide the clinical year PA student the opportunity to participate in health care within the primary care setting. Through hands on work under the direction of a clinical preceptor the student will document experience in:  Family Medicine AFPAP Program Manual Page 20
    •  Emergency Medicine  Internal Medicine  Inpatient, Outpatient Care  Long Term Care Students registered for Primary Care Preceptorship I will be required to log a minimum of 500 direct patient contact hours. While registered for the PCP II, students will be required to log a minimum of 250 contact hours. PHYO 610 Medical Specialties I (4) and PHYO 611 Medical Specialties II (4) The Medical Specialties series will provide the clinical year PA student the opportunity to participate in health care within the several specialty areas of clinical practice. Through hands on work under the direction of a clinical preceptor the student will document experience in:  Psychiatry- Inpatient and outpatient care  Surgery – pre-op, post-op, and operating room  Women’s Health – Obstetrics and gynecology  Pediatrics The medical specialties series will provide the student the opportunity to participate in health care within several specialty areas of clinical practice. Students will be required to log a minimum of 180 hours in each Medical Specialties course with minimum hour requirements for each area. Medical Specialties clinical areas of experience: 80 hours in Psychiatry o Inpatient and outpatient 80 hours in Surgery o Pre-op, post-op, operating room 100 hours in Women’s health o Obstetrics o Gynecology 100 hours in Pediatrics At the completion of the clinical experiences, students will have logged a minimum of 1, 110 patient contact hours accurately reflecting the part-time program design. In order to confirm students experiences in each of the required settings, students will document patient contact hours electronically using the E*Value system, a web-based clinical tracking system. http://www.advancedinformatics.com. Information on how to use this program will be provided in the program orientation sessions and is published on the CMS. Once the student has completed the required number of clinical hours within their assigned experience, assessment of knowledge and skill will be completed through computer based testing, written clinical documentation, and preceptors evaluations. Students’ clinical AFPAP Program Manual Page 21
    • performance and knowledge will be evaluated by the clinical preceptor supervising them. A short evaluation form will be completed at the middle of the experience and an in-depth evaluation at the end of the experience. These evaluations will be submitted electronically to the Clinical Coordinator, either through E*Value or email. Students will complete an online multiple choice examination covering topics pertinent to the clinical experience just completed. Clinical training site requirements and policies will be identified on the sites’ profile. The clinical coordinator will present detailed clinical experience policy and procedures during clinical planning sessions (orientation, advising etc.). Clinical Student Identification: Students will be required to wear their Saint Francis University Armed Forces Physician Assistant student identification while completing their clinical experience hours. Summative Evaluation: Students will be registered for the 0 credit pass/fail summative evaluation course during the 2nd semester of the clinical year. This course will be utilized to assure that the student has met the program graduate competencies and is prepared to enter clinical practice. The summative evaluation will consist of a program cumulative multiple choice examination and OSCE simulations. Students will be required to obtain an average of 80% or better in order to receive a passing grade. Students not receiving a passing score will be required to register for the 0 credit summative remediation during their final clinical semester. Students registered for the summative remediation will be required to meet with their academic advisor to develop a plan for remediation and re-assessment. OSCE Case Simulations- students will be required to complete 3 case simulations through distance based testing techniques. These case simulations will include history and physical examination, diagnostic testing and interpretation, differential diagnosis, treatment, patient education and follow-up for select patient populations. These case simulations may be provided through distance based simulation model experiences. Program Cumulative Multiple Choice examination Masters Capstone Students will be required to complete a Masters Capstone. This course is a 4 credit course that will allow the student to demonstrate the ability to apply the knowledge and skills gained throughout the program with the completion of this substantive project. A patient health based project will include research on a topic of need for a specified population, design of an educational tool, a plan for implementations, and identification of anticipated outcomes. Development of patient education programs, educational projects, hospital based quality assurance projects, etc, are all examples of projects that may be completed for the capstone AFPAP Program Manual Page 22
    • project. The student will be expected to prepare a scholarly paper detailing the project activities and anticipated outcomes in addition to the actual product. Students will be required to complete this capstone experience with a grade of “C” or better in order to be eligible to graduate. Student assessment techniques Students will be assessed throughout the PA program utilizing a variety of assessment tools to document attainment of program competencies. Assessment of student performance can include: multiple choice examinations, fill in the answer examinations, case scenarios, clinical skills, preceptor/supervisor evaluations, written assignments, literature reviews, project completion, interactive case studies and other forms of assessment. Each course within the PA program paradigm will outline specific assessment techniques utilized for that course. Grading Policy The grading system follows the University’s “+” and “-“letter grade system. Specific point calculations for each grade are as follows: A = equal to or greater than 92.50% A- = 88.50 - <92.50% B+ = 86.50 - < 88.50% B = 82.50 - <86.50% B- = 79.50 - <82.50% C+ = 77.50 - <79.50% C = 72.50 - < 77.50% D = 62.50 - < 72.50% F = < 62.50% Grades are calculated to the second decimal and are not rounded. Additional grade options include: I (Incomplete): This grade may be used when the student has failed to complete all course requirements by the end of the semester. It is intended to be used in cases when small amounts of course work remain to be completed. Students are required to complete the remaining course work no later than 14 days after the beginning of the subsequent semester. Any “I” grade that is not replaced by a letter grade with the defined time period will be automatically changed to the grade of “F”. See University Catalogue. CN (Continuing): This grade is used when unusual circumstances make it difficult or impossible for a student to complete course work by the end of the semester. This grade my only be used when the student initiates the process. This option should be discussed with the course instructor as soon as it becomes apparent to the student that he/she will be unable to complete the coursework as required. The student and instructor will determine the plan and date for course AFPAP Program Manual Page 23
    • completion. The program director will be notified and will confirm the plan. Appropriate forms will be completed and submitted to the registrar’s office. Assignments not completed by the deadline date outlined in the CN contract will cause the course grade to be reverted to “F”. See University Catalogue P/F (Pass/Fail): The Comprehensive (Summative) Examination will utilize the Pass/Fail grading option. The grade for the course will be calculated to either a P for passing or F for failing. Calculation of GPA is defined within the University catalogue and utilizes the course grade, associated quality point value for that grade and the course credits. Program Matriculation Student’s matriculation through the program will be constantly monitored by program faculty and staff through a variety of mechanisms including, but not limited to: Academic performance and progress reviews of students at weekly faculty meetings Student advising sessions Evaluations from preceptors and faculty Progression through the program requires the student to successfully complete each course with a grade of “C” or better. Students must document the minimum number of clinical experience hours obtaining a final grade of “C” or better in their clinical coursework. A student’s progression through the curriculum may be delayed or stopped as a result of poor academic performance. If a student receives a “D” in any course, they will be required to repeat that course. This will result in an alteration of program progression. A plan for remediation will be developed through the PAPeR committee. A student receiving a second “D” during program matriculation will be dismissed from the program. Areas of concern will be addressed and followed up with through program processes including Identification- faculty identification through course assessment scores, participation, adequate progress, preceptor concerns or student identified concerns. Notification- program and student identified concerns will be addressed at weekly faculty meetings. Discussion- Analysis of circumstances will occur to include student input as necessary and an action plan will be developed. Remediation- Appropriate remediation techniques will be implemented in conjunction with the student Re-evaluation- Re-evaluation and follow-up will be reported at a subsequent faculty meeting. Reporting- A report will be filed within program and/or student files. Student Progress Review committee: The Physician Assistant Performance Review Committee (PAPeR) is composed of program faculty, student representatives and outside educational or clinical representatives. This formal AFPAP Program Manual Page 24
    • committee may be convened when students fail to meet program standards. At the request of program faculty or the program chair, this committee may meet to review a student’s academic or professional performance. Individual students may also request a review by the committee through a written request to the program chair detailing the reasons for review. Actions that may be determined through the PAPeR committee may include, requiring the student to repeat courses or change of the program progression, suspension from the program, probation, or program dismissal. Decisions of the PAPeR committee will be final. For appeal beyond the PAPeR committee students should follow the University processes for appeal past the department level. Alteration of Program Progression/deceleration: A student’s progression through the program may be altered as a result of academic or personal reasons. These situations will be reviewed on an individual basis and an appropriate progression plan will be developed in consultation with the student. Academic failures will require the student to repeat course work and delay original graduation date. Personal circumstances requiring the student to take a leave of absence will delay original graduation date. Documentation will be maintained in the student file. Probation: Students may be placed on academic probation as a result of failure to meet program progression standards. The determination of probation may be a result of PAPeR committee recommendations. A student placed on probation will receive notification from the program director on the individualized probationary status. A probationary status will require the student to meet defined academic and professional objectives throughout the probationary period. These objectives will be determined based on the individual circumstances. Examples of objectives include, requirement to complete specific remediation activities that may include tutoring, maintenance of specific grades, completion of additional assignments or activities, etc. A student placed on probation will be monitored by their academic advisor who will report to the program director until the terms of the probation have been met. All documentation associated with academic progress, including probationary status, will be kept within the students file. Program withdrawal: Voluntary withdrawal from the Physician Assistant Program may be initiated by a student after submission of a letter to the Program Director requesting withdrawal. In the letter, the student should outline the circumstances and reasons for withdrawal. Students will be requested to conduct an exit interview with the Program Director prior to leaving the Program. All students are further advised to follow the University catalog procedure for withdrawal from the University. Program dismissal: Dismissal from the program can be a result of poor professional and/or academic behaviors and performance. In the event of program dismissal, students will meet with the program director and a formal dismissal letter will be provided. AFPAP Program Manual Page 25
    • Any student wishing to appeal the programs decision are required to follow University appeals processes outlined in the University catalogue and/or student hand book. Leave of Absence: The program recognizes that personal circumstances may require the student to request a leave of absence for a defined period of time. Students must submit a request for a leave of absence to the program director to include the circumstances and duration for the leave. Medical, personal and military circumstances may require the student to request a leave. The program director will review the request with the student and provide documentation of the requirements for the leave and subsequent return. In addition to PA program processes for requesting a leave of absence, the student will be required to complete any processes within the University for withdrawal from courses or extended leave. Students called to active military service will be required to provide documentation of military orders to the Registrar. Detailed information on the processes for applying for a leave as a result of military service is defined within the University student handbook. Re-admission: Students returning from a military leave requesting re-admission to the University will be automatically re-admitted with all admissions fees waived. The student’s academic standing at the time of re-admission shall remain as it was prior to the call to active military duty. Students returning from medical or personal leave will return with the same academic standing as when they left. Students may be required to demonstrate retention of knowledge upon return from an extended leave. This may include successful completion of assessments covering prior instructional content. These will be outlined within the process of the granting of the leave. It is the student’s responsibility to contact the program director near the end (approximately 6-8 weeks) of the leave to make arrangements for returning to coursework. Tuition Refunds: Tuition refunds follow University policy and are outlined within the University catalogue. Refunds are based upon percent of payment reflective of time of the withdrawal within the semester. Acceptance into the program and completion of the program does not guarantee successful completion of the national certifying examination for physician assistants or employment. General Academic Standards/Policies Academic Accommodation The Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program supports opportunities derived from the ADA legislation and encourages students to pursue their educational goals. Students requiring accommodation are encouraged to identify their needs as soon as possible to enable reasonable evaluation and accommodation. AFPAP Program Manual Page 26
    • Individuals are not obligated to disclose disability unless accommodation is desired. If a student chooses not to disclose this information, didactic faculty and clinical rotation sites are not obligated to make any accommodations. If a student chooses to delay disclosure, accommodations cannot be made retroactively. The process for verifying disability and determining accommodation can take several weeks. It is recommended that students with known accommodation needs wishing to disclose this information can and should initiate the process immediately after they have received their acceptance letter. The student should contact the University’s Academic Center for Enrichment to begin the process. Information regarding a disability is confidential and only those individuals responsible for the evaluation of the requests and those responsible for providing the recommended accommodations will have access to this information. Student Advising Each student will be assigned an academic faculty advisor through program matriculation. The advisor will meet with the student periodically throughout the academic year (beginning, middle and end) of each semester. The advising sessions will provide the opportunity to review student progress, initiate remedial assistance as necessary, and discuss issues of technology, organization and experience among other topics. Remediation The need for student remediation may be identified by the student, the academic advisor, course instructors, faculty, or clinical preceptors. The recommendation for remediation will be presented to the program director and will be discussed within the weekly faculty meetings. The student’s academic advisor will meet with the student to discuss the issues surrounding the performance concerns and develop a recommendation for remediation that may include referral to the University’s Academic Center for Enrichment or tutoring assistance through the individual instructor, peer or adjunct. Documentation will be placed within the students file containing the recommendations, actions and results. Student Referrals As part of the student advising program, faculty can provide the student with appropriate referral information for academic and non academic issues. A student requiring academic assistance will be referred to the University’s Academic Center for Enrichment. Non academic issues may be referred to the University Counseling center or appropriate outside referral system. Student Files Files will be kept on each student enrolled within the program. These files will contain admissions materials, didactic and clinical evaluations, correspondence (advising, remediation, health clearance, student requests, etc). Students may request access to material contained within their files including didactic and clinical evaluations, advising and remediation documents, health clearance reports, etc. Students AFPAP Program Manual Page 27
    • will not be able to view individual admissions evaluation forms. A written request must be sent to the program director indicating the specific documents wishing to be viewed. Documents will be provided through protected, secured electronic formats. Student Evaluation: Student assessment will incorporate a variety of evaluation tools in order to ensure students meet the program graduate competencies. The following is an example of some of these assessment measures that can be utilized throughout the program: Course examinations/assessments Course assignments Written documentation Practical Examinations Presentations Clinical Experience evaluation Timely submission of materials Professional behaviors Assessment techniques and policy will be defined within each course and is determined by the course instructor and program. Students are expected to complete all assessments as scheduled within the program courses. If a student is unable to complete an examination at the scheduled time, it is the student’s responsibility to notify the individual instructor as soon as the conflict is identified. The instructor will determine possible make up strategies if available. Basic Assessment Policies Computer based examinations may be scheduled to be completed at a defined time. It will be the student’s responsibility to make appropriate arrangements to complete the assessment requirements as scheduled. Examinations may be completed through utilization of a lock down browser. Students will be provided with instruction on appropriate use. Time limitations may be implemented during various examinations. Additional technology applications may be utilized to confirm that the student is the originator of work. Any student who does not follow examination protocols or who is caught cheating will be required to appear before the PAPeR committee for determination of penalty. This may include failure of that assessment, failure of the course, dismissal from the program and/or dismissal from the University. Students will have the opportunity to review exam content following the groups’ completion of that assessment. This review may be conducted as an overall exam review or may allow the students to individually review their own examination. It will be the instructor’s determination on the type of examination review that will be offered. Individual course faculty will determine policy on the challenge of examination questions. Students should follow the guidelines set forth by the instructor. AFPAP Program Manual Page 28
    • Student employment while enrolled in the program: The AFPAP has been developed to address the needs of the adult learner. Course sequencing within the program has been developed to be completed as a part-time paradigm allowing the student to maintain current employment activities. Students must carefully evaluate the demands of employment with meeting program requirements. Although designed as a part time PA program, coursework may be intensive and may require a full time commitment from the student. Although didactic coursework may be reasonably completed while maintaining current employment, clinical experiences will be demanding and require students to complete clinical hours at defined times, typically between 7AM-5PM, depending on the site schedule. Students’ will be required to complete the clinical experiences as scheduled by the program. Should it become apparent that the student is unable to complete program requirements as a result of personal work/duties, student will meet with the PAPeR committee for recommendation. Actions may include: Leave of Absence from the program Recommendations for adjustment in outside obligations in order to focus on academics Program deceleration Program withdrawal The program does not allow students to be employed within the program itself. Additionally, while completing clinical experiences, students are not to be employed by or substituted for clinical or administrative personnel. All clinical sites are aware of student work requirements and should be reported if policy is not maintained. Student Appeals, Grievance and Harassment: Students have the right to file appeals or grievances following University policy. Appeals or grievances must be filed in writing and follow the appropriate chain for notification. In general, the process should follow instructor → Program Director →Dean of Health Sciences → Provost. Students are referred to the University and student catalogues for details on filing an appeal or grievance. Program faculty and staff are responsible for addressing and processing of the appeal/grievance. All processes will be documented within appropriate program files. All harassment complaints should follow the published university policy located within the student handbook, available on the web. Student Responsibilities It is expected that every student will exhibit initiative and responsibility in planning and completing the professional training for physician assistant practice. The student must comply at all times with the regulations and administrative procedures governing study within the Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program. Professional conduct AFPAP Program Manual Page 29
    • Professionalism is foremost in training within the health sciences at Saint Francis University. Students will be held to the highest standards in professionalism throughout their academic career. The faculty will continually evaluate the student in areas of professionalism in congruence with the physician assistant code of ethics and will hold students to these standards with the same expectations as academic and clinical performance standards. Students receiving poor evaluative scores relative to professional attitudes and behaviors will be required to appear before the PAPeR committee. Students can be academically failed for unprofessional behaviors alone. The abilities to graciously accept and effectively profit from constructive criticism, assume personal responsibility for one’s own actions, meet stated and implied requirements and expectations, willingly take and follow through upon direction to completion, and exhibit flexibility and the spirit of cooperation during unexpected or adverse conditions are essential to becoming a true professional. Every student must obey local, state and federal laws and statutes and comply with the policies of Saint Francis University, the School of Health Sciences and the Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program. Unprofessional conduct is unacceptable and warrants appropriate corrective or disciplinary action by the University, the School of Health Sciences and the Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program that may include dismissal from the Program and/or the University. Academic honesty Academic honesty is an essential part of the Saint Francis University experience. Dishonesty in any aspect of the life of the University is viewed as being incompatible with its moral tradition. Academic dishonesty will not be tolerated. Cheating, in any form, will be considered a serious offense. Students are advised to review the University's Academic Honesty Policy. Participating in any form of academic dishonesty will be grounds for disciplinary action and may result in receiving a failing grade for the course. Students should understand that choosing to cheat may jeopardize their enrollment in the course and subsequently the Program. It is expected that all material submitted is the student’s original work and is not a reproduction of another student or Internet material. Students are expected to give appropriate credit to original authors and utilize appropriate reference citations based on the APA style guidelines. Plagiarism will result in, at the minimum, a “0” for that assignment, but may result in dismissal from the program. Attendance and Participation Active student participation in all course/program activities is required. Scheduled course and program requirements will occur throughout the student’s matriculation. These activities are mandatory. Program faculty will utilize various student tracking tools to ensure each student is actively completing course and program requirements. Specific difficulties in meeting all AFPAP Program Manual Page 30
    • program activities must be addressed with the course instructor, professional advisor, clinical preceptor, and/or the Program Director as appropriate. Course Requirements: Courses are offered through a distance learning platform. Each course will be unique in the approach to meeting course objectives. Synchronous and asynchronous methods of instruction may be utilized within the courses and will contain defined attendance requirements. Students must contact the course instructor for issues affecting the ability of the student to complete all learning activities as scheduled. Excessive absence or accommodation from scheduled course requirements will be brought to the Program Director and may be brought to the Physician Assistant Performance Review (PAPeR) Committee for review and action. Action may include, but is not limited to, failure of a course necessitating a repeat of that course, deceleration of the student within the program or program dismissal. Program Requirements: Students are expected to meet program requirements for progression and graduation, as scheduled. Those students who do not meet these requirements will be brought to the PAPeR committee for review and action. Recommendations of the committee will be based on the student’s program progress to date and the individual circumstances surrounding the situation. Action may include, repeat of coursework, student deceleration, and/or program dismissal. Clinical Site Requirements: Students will be expected to meet the requirements of each clinical site in addition to any program requirements for the preceptorship. Program requirements will be defined within the syllabus and site requirements should be defined by the preceptor at the start of each preceptorship. It is the student’s responsibility to notify the site preceptor and the program’s Clinical Coordinator with issues in meeting the requirements of the site/program as scheduled. Virtual Classroom Etiquette/Netiquette and Appropriate Communications: The same guidelines that apply to traditional classes should be observed in the virtual classroom environment. Please use proper netiquette when interacting with class members and the professor. Proper Identification At all times, students must display a clean, well-kept appearance that includes, clean, pressed clothing and good personal hygiene. Clinical attire, as defined by individual clinical sites, including Saint Francis University student identification is required while the student is in the PA student role. Evaluations and Surveys Students will be required to complete, course, instructor and program evaluations throughout the program. These evaluations are necessary for the continuous assessment and improvement of the program. These will typically be available for completion through on-line formats. The AFPAP Program Manual Page 31
    • Program will provide the necessary supplies if an evaluation is to be completed through other means. Failure to complete evaluations as required my result in withholding of grades. All students will complete an Exit Interview prior to graduating from the Program. The interview will be conducted during the final months of the program. This interview will be conducted through distance based methods and/or media. Students will be asked to provide responses to questions regarding their complete educational experience. Points of discussion will include the didactic and clinical curriculum and preparation for meeting the programs graduate competencies. A graduate survey will be conducted 6 months after graduation. This graduate survey will be available through a distance based survey platform. This graduate survey will focus on obtaining data on the student’s impression of program effectiveness in preparing the student for clinical practice. Additional data gathered during this survey will include graduate job placement information. Student Health Students are required to submit a medical history, physical examination and specific laboratory testing documents at program entry. These must be updated at the start of clinical experiences. Documentation is to be submitted to the SFU student health center for review and clearance. The program will not receive the students’ individual health information, but will receive a clearance form for each student indicating the student has submitted all required documentation and is cleared. Students will be required to submit documentation of a physical examination completed within the past year at enrollment. Students will be required to update this examination prior to beginning the clinical experiences. In addition, students will be required to submit documentation for the following: IMMUNIZATIONS: _____ POLIO (If no documentation must do titer) _____ MMR (1&2) _____ TETANUS Booster with pertussis (Tdap) _____ HEPATITIS B SERIES _____ INTRADERMAL PPD (2 Step) TITERS: _____ RUBEOLA (MEASLES) TITER _____ RUBELLA SCREEN/TITER {if negative must receive boosters} _____ MUMPS TITER _____ VARICELLA TITER (If negative, Varivax Series) 1__________ 2__________ _____ HEPATITIS B TITER (Surface antibody) (If titer negative, ENTIRE series must be completed per CDC guidelines or waiver signed) Series Dates: 1__________ 2__________ 3__________ AFPAP Program Manual Page 32
    • _____ Signed waiver form (Copy attached) _____ Hepatitis C Antibody _____URINE DRUG SCREEN Health forms can be obtained through the web. All health documentation must be submitted to: Student Health Center Saint Francis University DiSepio Institute for Rural Health and Wellness 117 Evergreen Drive Loretto PA 15940 Students are required to maintain their own health insurance throughout the program. Graduation Requirements In order for students to graduate from the Saint Francis University Armed Forces Physician Assistant program with a Master of Physician Assistant science degree the following degree requirements must be met: Complete all coursework within the program paradigm Have a minimum 2.0 QPA on a 4.0 scale Pass each physician assistant course with a "C" or better, including the Masters Capstone Pass the Summative evaluation or remediation with an 80% or better The University registrar will confirm the students meeting graduation requirements and issue the diploma. The University confers degrees in August, December and May of each year. The official graduation ceremonies are held in May. Students within the Armed Forces Physician Assistant Program will receive their degree in August and will be extended the opportunity to walk during the next official May graduation ceremony. Information will be provided by the department for students choosing to attend the ceremony. Student Resources Academic Center for Enrichment Denise Kovach, Director dkovach@francis.edu (814)472-3176 Blackboard CE support Theresa Wilson. Instructional Technology Specialist twilson@francis.edu (814) 472-2799 Business office Maddy Grecek, Office Assistant AFPAP Program Manual Page 33
    • mgrecek@francis.edu (814) 472-3006 Campus Ministry Denise Farabaugh, Office Assistant dfarabaugh@francis.edu (814) 472-3172 Career Services Beth McGregor, Office Assistant bmcgregor@francis.edu (814) 472-3019 Counseling Center Mr. David Wilson, Director dwilson@francis.edu (814) 472-3211 Financial aid office Mary Shingle, Office Assistant mshingle@francis.edu (814) 472-3010 Library Main Circulation desk (814) 472-3160 Military Affairs office Laura (Yingling) Papcunik, Financial aide representative Lyingling@francis.edu (814) 472-3077 Office of the Provost Melita O’Donnell, Office Assistant modonnell@francis.edu (814) 472-3004 Presidents Office Vicki Soyka, Office Assistant vsoyka@francis.edu (814) 472-3001 Registrar Linda L. Kline, Office Assistant llkline@francis.edu (814) 472-3009 School of Health Sciences Patricia Fitzgerald, Interim Dean pfitzgerald@francis.edu (814) 472-3121 Technology Support CERMUSA helpdesk # 1-800-476-0382 option 1 Additional Resources: Twitter: https://twitter.com/sfubb Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=78246348247 Screencast: http://www.screencast.com/users/bbsupport Help/Test page http://paonline.cermusa.francis.edu/idctest/ AFPAP Program Manual Page 34
    • Blog: http://idc.cermusa.francis.edu/ AFPAP Program Manual Page 35