4 Best PA Schools in Canada-Tuition & Requirements

A physician assistant (PA) is a medical professional who reaches out to isolated or far-flung areas on behalf of the supervising doctor.

In support of a variety of operational tasks, physician assistants are employed across Canada in Health Services Clinics, on ships, and abroad.

A physician assistant’s main responsibilities are to:

  • Provide primary health care;
  • Provide emergency care;
  • Promote health protection and education;
  • Practice environmental medicine and hyperbaric medicine; and
  • Promote occupational health and safety.

How Much do Physician Assistants Make In Canada? 

In Canada, a physician assistant makes an average of $86,063 a year, or $44.14 an hour.

Most experienced workers can earn up to $99,143 per year, while entry-level occupations start at $49,706 annually.

Now, let’s look at the PA schools in Canada.

The List of Best PA Schools In Canada

There are 97 universities in Canada that offer courses in both English and French as of 2021. However, these are the best PA schools in Canada. 

McMaster University Physician Assistant Education Program 

The PA Education Program is a two-year program of study that is spread out across 24 months, starting in September.

Clinical science courses will be taught during the first 12 months of Year 1. Clinical training will be provided during the subsequent 12-month term in Year 2.

One of the first universities in Canada to introduce a physician assistant education program was McMaster in 2008. The Bachelor of Health Sciences will be awarded by the PA program.

Inquiry-based learning and problem-based learning will be used to teach the course, which will improve each student’s capacity for critical thought, problem-solving, and lifetime learning. 

The McMaster University Physician Assistant Education Program’s goal is to train enthusiastic, creative, committed, and caring people who will serve as examples in a new health care delivery model by practicing medicine under a doctor’s supervision and thereby increasing access to healthcare for the people of Ontario. 

Click here for more information. 

Admission Requirements: The following criteria must be fulfilled to be considered for admission. 

  • at least two years of undergraduate study.

  • Minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on the OMSAS 4.0 scale

  • No particular background or course requirements.

  • There is no need for previous employment or volunteer work.

  • Complete the online application through this link 

  • Access to the supplementary application will be emailed to all qualified applicants by end of February. 

Tuition: Click here to see the breakdown. 

PA Consortium (the University of Toronto, Northern Ontario School of Medicine, The Michener Institute for Education at UHN) 

In cooperation with NOSM University and The Michener Institute of Education, the University of Toronto offers the BScPA degree.

The Consortium of PA Education was established by the three universities in order for them to work together on the creation, management, and delivery of the U of T degree.

The Consortium provides students with a balance between academic and clinical emphasis, comprehensive access to resources related to health care, and a strategy for delivering a curriculum that maximizes rural training and geographic accessibility across Ontario.

The program’s goal is to give its graduates the skills needed to lay the groundwork for a long-lasting profession of physician assistants in Canada. 

Click here for more information. 

Admission Requirements: Ensure you fulfill all requirement before applying. 

  • The deadline is 17th of January

Tuition: Click here to see the breakdown. 

University of Manitoba Physician Assistant Program

This school’s Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) degree is a graduate program with a coursework component that is nationally certified and created to prepare generalist healthcare professionals who can sit for the Manitoba physician assistant licensing test.

There is no other graduate program for Pas in the nation. It lasts for 25 months. 

Click here to see more information. 

Admission Requirements: To be considered for admission, ensure you fulfill all requirements. 

  • A four-year Bachelor’s degree from a college or university approved by the University of Manitoba, ideally in the health sciences. Students may apply if they are in their final and fourth years of studies.

  • A minimum GPA of 3.0 over the previous two full academic years (60 credit hours). Applicants must be informed that the program’s competitive GPA is 3.5.

  • If they were not taken during the Bachelor’s degree, undergraduate courses in human anatomy, physiology, and biochemistry are necessary (at least three credit hours for each).

  • Psychology and microbiology are useful courses.

  • Before the January 15 application deadline, applicants must finish the TakeAltus (CASPer) mandatory Situational Judgement Test or sign up to take it.

Tuition: Click here to see breakdown. 

Canadian Forces Health Services Training Centre Program

This is a training available to only those who are part of Canadian forces. 

Physician Assistants enroll in the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, where they spend the next 12 weeks completing their Basic Officer Military Qualification training.

General military knowledge, leadership philosophies, rules and traditions of the Forces, fundamental firearms handling, and first aid are some of the subjects addressed.

These recently gained military skills can also be put to use in training exercises involving force protection, field training, navigation, and leadership.

Another essential component of basic training is a strict physical fitness regimen.

The Basic Military Officer Qualification course is taught in either English or French and passing it is a requirement for more advanced training. 

The Common Health Services Officer (CHSO) course, an eight-day online course offered by the Defence Learning Network, is required for physician assistants.

In the CHSO course, physician assistants learn about the regulations and practices of the Canadian Armed Forces as well as the HR management of both military personnel and civilian employees.

At the Canadian Forces Health Services Training Centre in Borden, Ontario, physician assistants learn about the history and organizational structure of the Canadian Forces Medical Service as well as the special challenges of military medicine.

The groundwork for collaborating with other health service professionals and providing healthcare in a military setting is laid forth in this training for incoming physician assistant officers. 

Click here for more information. 

Admission Requirements: These are the details of the direct entry plan. 

The CAF may place you directly into the necessary on-the-job training program after basic training if you already have a Baccalaureate or Master’s degree from an accredited Physician Assistant program, are a Certified PA holding a current Physician Assistant Certification Council of Canada (PACCC) Certification, and are registered to practice as a Physician Assistant in a Canadian province or territory. 

Below are the details for the paid education options

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) will pay successful recruits to attend an accredited Canadian University Physician Assistant program because this employment requires certification as a physician assistant. Books, equipment, supplies, student fees, registration fees, and tuition for the two-year course of study are all covered by this program. 

Students already enrolled in a recognized Bachelor of Science in Physician Assistant program at a Canadian university may also be qualified for this training program. 

You work for the CAF for a while in exchange for a full-time wage during your studies and residency that includes medical and dental coverage as well as paid vacation days.

Candidates chosen for this program often spend their first two years at college and their last two years of service in military training. 

If you decide to apply to this program, you must do so through the CAF as well as through a reputable Canadian university’s Bachelor of Science in Physician Assistant program. 


Is there a demand for Physician Assistants in Canada? 

Over the years 2019 to 2028, a countrywide labor shortage is anticipated for this occupational category. 

Do PAs get paid well in Canada? 

For two years of your time and a Master’s (in Manitoba) or Bachelor’s (in Ontario) degree in PA, you can expect to make $75,000 to $130,000 or more. 

What are Physician Assistants called in Canada? 

Since the 1960s, there have been physician assistants (Pas) in the Canadian armed forces.

However, the profession has just truly taken off in the last ten years. In the Canadian Forces, the PA profession had its beginnings. In the 1960s, the Canadian Forces evolved into Medical Assistants. 

How long does it take to become a PA in Canada? 

Different prerequisites must be met in order to graduate from different PA programs. However, generally speaking, in order to become a licensed medical assistant in Canada, you must finish a two-year course, presuming you have met the qualifications. 

How many hours does a PA work a week?

The typical PA puts in 40 hours per week of full-time employment. Additional hours may frequently be needed for this position.

They may be forced to work nights, weekends, or holidays, and their shifts can change. Additionally, this position frequently necessitates being on call. 

Can American PAs work in Canada? 

Physician assistants who are certified in the United States may work in Canada.

American physician assistants (Pas) are permitted to work in Canada provided they have successfully finished a recognized American physician assistant program, challenged, and passed the NCCPA Certification Exam. 

Can a US physician work in Canada? 

US doctors must either complete a period of supervision (often several months to a year) or pass the Medical Council of Canada tests, or both, in accordance with the rules of the respective provincial colleges of physicians and surgeons, in order to be fully licensed to practice in Canada. 

Where can Pas work in Canada? 

About 800 Pas are employed in health care settings across Canada, primarily in Manitoba, Alberta, Ontario, and New Brunswick. 

How many Pas are there in Canada? 

In Canada, there are about 800 qualified Pas working, with more than 500 in Ontario. 

How many PA schools are in Canada? 

There are 4 PA education programs in Canada. 

Is physician assistant a dying field? 

The industry is anticipated to expand further. According to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in PA is expected to increase by 31% between 2020 and 2030, which is substantially faster than the average for all occupations. 

Do you have any suggestions about these PA schools in Canada? Please comment below.

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