Education Law

Article 131-B, Physician Assistants

§6540. Definitions. | §6541. Requirements for a License. | §6542. Performance of medical services. | §6543. Construction. | §6544. Regulations. | §6545. Emergency services rendered by physician assistant. | §6546. Limited permits.

§6540. Definitions.

As used in this article:

  1. Physician assistant. The term "physician assistant" means a person who is licensed as a physician assistant pursuant to this article.
  2. Physician. The term "physician" means a practitioner of medicine licensed to practice medicine pursuant to article one hundred thirty-one of this chapter.
  3. Approved program. The term "approved program" means a program for the education of physician assistants which has been formerly approved by the department.
  4. Hospital. The term "hospital" means an institution or facility possessing a valid operating certificate issued pursuant to article twenty-eight of the public health law and authorized to employ physician assistants in accordance with rules and regulations of the public health and health planning council.

§6541. Requirements for a License.

  1. To qualify for a license as a physician assistant, each person shall pay a fee of one hundred fifteen dollars to the department for admission to a department conducted examination, a fee of forty-five dollars for each reexamination and a fee of seventy dollars for persons not requiring admission to a department conducted examination and shall also submit satisfactory evidence, verified by oath or affirmation, that he or she:
    1. at the time of application is at least twenty-one years of age;
    2. is of good moral character;
    3. has received an education including a bachelor's or equivalent degree in accordance with the commissioner's regulations;
    4. has satisfactorily completed an approved program for the training of physician assistants. The approved program for the training of physician assistants shall include not less than forty weeks of supervised clinical training and thirty-two credit hours of classroom work. Applicants for a license as a physician assistant who have completed an approved program leading to a bachelor's degree or equivalent in physician assistant studies shall be deemed to have satisfied this paragraph. The commissioner is empowered to determine whether an applicant possesses equivalent education and training, such as experience as a nurse or military corpsman, which may be accepted in lieu of all or part of an approved program; and
    5. in the case of an applicant for a license as a physician assistant, has obtained a passing score on an examination acceptable to the department.
  2. The department shall furnish to each person applying for a license pursuant to this section an application form calling for such information as the department deems necessary and shall issue to each applicant who satisfies the requirements of subdivision one of this section a license as a physician assistant in a particular medical specialty for the period expiring December thirty-first of the first odd-numbered year terminating subsequent to the issuance of such license.
  3. Every licensee shall apply to the department for a renewal of his or her license. The department shall mail to every licensed physician assistant an application form for renewal, addressed to the licensee's post office address on file with the department. Upon receipt of such application properly executed, together with evidence of satisfactory completion of such continuing education requirements as may be established by the commissioner of health pursuant to section thirty-seven hundred one of the public health law, the department shall issue a renewal. Renewal periods shall be triennial and the renewal fee shall be forty-five dollars.

§6542. Performance of medical services.

  1. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a physician assistant may perform medical services, but only when under the supervision of a physician and only when such acts and duties as are assigned to him or her are within the scope of practice of such supervising physician.
  2. Supervision shall be continuous but shall not be construed as necessarily requiring the physical presence of the supervising physician at the time and place where such services are performed.
  3. No physician shall employ or supervise more than four physician assistants in his or her private practice.
  4. Nothing in this article shall prohibit a hospital from employing physician assistants provided they work under the supervision of a physician designated by the hospital and not beyond the scope of practice of such physician. The numerical limitation of subdivision three of this section shall not apply to services performed in a hospital.
  5. Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, nothing shall prohibit a physician employed by or rendering services to the department of corrections and community supervision under contract from supervising no more than six physician assistants in his or her practice for the department of corrections and community supervision.
  6. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a trainee in an approved program may perform medical services when such services are performed within the scope of such program.
  7. Nothing in this article, or in article thirty-seven of the public health law, shall be construed to authorize physician assistants to perform those specific functions and duties specifically delegated by law to those persons licensed as allied health professionals under the public health law or this chapter.

§6543. Construction.

Only a person registered as a physician assistant by the department may use the title "physician assistant" or the letters "P.A." after his name.


§6544. Regulations.

The commissioner may promulgate such other regulations as are necessary to carry out the purposes of this article.


§6545. Emergency services rendered by physician assistant.

Notwithstanding any inconsistent provision of any general, special or local law, any physician assistant properly licensed in this state who voluntarily and without the expectation of monetary compensation renders first aid or emergency treatment at the scene of an accident or other emergency, outside a hospital, doctor's office or any other place having proper and necessary medical equipment, to a person who is unconscious, ill or injured, shall not be liable for damages for injuries alleged to have been sustained by such person or for damages for the death of such person alleged to have occurred by reason of an act or omission in the rendering of such first aid or emergency treatment unless it is established that such injuries were or such death was caused by gross negligence on the part of such physician assistant. Nothing in this section shall be deemed or construed to relieve a licensed physician assistant from liability for damages for injuries or death caused by an act or omission on the part of a physician assistant while rendering professional services in the normal and ordinary course of his or her practice.


§6546. Limited permits.

Permits limited as to eligibility, practice and duration, shall be issued by the department to eligible applicants, as follows:

  1. Eligibility. A person who fulfills all requirements to be licensed as a physician assistant except that relating to the examination shall be eligible for a limited permit.
  2. Limit of practice. A permittee shall be authorized to practice as a physician assistant only under the direct supervision of a physician.
  3. Duration. A limited permit shall expire one year from the date of issuance or upon notice to the permittee by the department that the application for a license has been denied. A limited permit shall be extended upon application for one additional year, provided that the permittee's request for such extension is endorsed by a physician who either has supervised or will supervise the permittee, except that such extension may be denied by the department for cause which shall be stated in writing. If the permittee is awaiting the results of a licensing examination at the time such limited permit expires, such permit shall continue to be valid until ten days after notification to the permittee of the result of such examination.
  4. Fees. The fee for each limited permit shall be one hundred five dollars.
Last Updated: December 3, 2013