Pfeiffer’s P.A. program receives accreditation

Published 4:28 pm Wednesday, November 13, 2019

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The Pfeiffer University Master of Physician Assistant Studies program has received provisional accreditation from the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc (ARC-PA).

This approval of status allows for Pfeiffer to educate up to 24 Physician Assistant students in the first class in 2020, 36 in the second class in 2021 and 45 in the third class in 2022.

“This is a momentous milestone in the timeline of our program,” Brenda Diaz, program director for Physician Assistant Studies at Pfeiffer University, said. “Now, we move forward with a program that will develop highly qualified and professionally trained physician assistants. Through our curriculum, we will address health disparities for underserved populations and improve healthcare in our rural communities.”

Orientation for the first class begins on Jan. 6, 2020, with classes starting on Jan. 13. The program will begin on the Misenheimer campus as the Pfeiffer University Center for Health Sciences is under construction. The Center for Health Sciences has an anticipated completion date of Summer 2020.

When construction is complete, the program will move into the facility located in Albemarle.

“This facility is not only a new building, but it is also a beacon for transformation,” Dr. Scott Bullard, president of Pfeiffer University, said. “This is a clear pathway for our students to move from an undergraduate program to graduate school and meet the demonstrated needs of the healthcare industry.”

“The city would like to congratulate all the Pfeiffer staff for this major announcement,” Albemarle Mayor Ronnie Michael said. “This was just another of many hurdles the university has to comply with to make this project become a reality. The staff is dedicated to the professional standards required to achieve this accreditation. We look forward to the opening of the new health sciences building in downtown Albemarle.”

Albemarle Councilman Dr. Chris Bramlett, also a Pfeiffer trustee emeritus, called the announcement “a landmark event in the history of the Pfeiffer-Albemarle relationship.”

“It’s very exciting,” added Mark Donham, director of economic development for the city. “There’s a lot of hard work that’s gone into this by Pfeiffer and the city and the county. A lot of people have put in a lot of effort to make this successful and you just have these milestones along the way and this is clearly an important one.”

Reporter Chris Miller contributed to this story.