Physicians' assistant (anaesthesia)

In the United Kingdom, an Anaesthesia Associate, formerly a physicians' assistant (anaesthesia), abbreviated to PA(A), is a healthcare worker who provides anaesthesia under the medical direction and supervision of a consultant anaesthetist.[1] Anaesthesia Associates are not medical doctors, and enter the role by completing a 27-month full-time training programme which leads to the award of a postgraduate diploma. To be eligible, a candidate must have a previous degree in a biomedical or science subject, or recognised previous healthcare experience in another role.[2] Despite the similarity of the name, the role is distinct from physician assistant, which refers to a non-doctor practitioner who works in areas of medicine other than anaesthesia.[3]

Physicians' Assistant (Anaesthesia) from July 2019 will be known as Anaesthesia Associate.[4] The role is currently undergoing statutory regulation, and it is the General Medical Council (GMC) that has been chosen as the most suitable regulator for this profession.


  1. "Physicians' Assistant (Anaesthesia)". Royal College of Anaesthetists. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
  2. "Training, development and registration (physicians' assistant - anaesthesia)". Health Careers. NHS Education England. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
  3. "Medical associate professions". Health Careers. NHS Education England. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
  4. "Association of Anaesthesia Associates". Association of Anaesthesia Associates (AAA). Retrieved 30 May 2019.

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