Statement from AADA President Kenneth J. Tomecki, MD, FAAD:

The American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA) values the role of physician assistants as members of a physician-led team providing quality patient care. But the AADA and its members strongly oppose the title change proposed by the American Academy of PAs from physician assistant to physician associate. The change will exacerbate patient confusion about who is providing care and his/her role in the health care system. The name change will not reflect the difference in education and training as compared to the training of a board-certified dermatologist.

Physician assistants are important components of patient care, collaborating appropriately with dermatologists throughout the U.S. The AADA believes that optimum care is delivered under the leadership of a board-certified dermatologist who provides direct, on-site supervision to all non-dermatologist personnel. Everyone who delivers medical care has an obligation to inform patients and the public of individual qualifications and competencies prior to treatment. Scope of practice in dermatology is critical to ensure patient safety.

[Source(s): American Academy of Dermatology, Newswise]