Darnall graduates four physician assistants
After completing the Armys two-year Interservice Physician Assistant Program at Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center 1ST Lieutenants (from left to right) Patrick Rose Erik Hanson Jessica Beauvil and Christopher Parks earned a masters degree from the Univer

Darnall graduates four physician assistants, the number one growing medical profession


By Patricia Deal,
CRDAMC Public Affairs

FORT HOOD, Texas " Four Soldiers became physician assistants May 12 when they graduated from the Interservice Physician Assistant Program at Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center.

Newly commissioned 1st Lieutenants Erik Hanson, Patrick Rose, Christopher Parks and Jessica Beauvil completed the two-year program, which earned them a master’s degree from the University of Nebraska.

As PAs, the new graduates will provide health care to beneficiaries across the Army, conducting physicals and assessing medical needs under the direction of a licensed physician. They will also help train enlisted medics and may evaluate the medical readiness of individual units.

In his congratulatory remarks to the graduates, Col. (Dr.) Steven Braverman, CRDAMC commander, cited an oft-quoted ancient roman quote, “Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.”

“You now have the knowledge and skills to prepare you for the many opportunities ahead. Often, you will be the first line medical provider for Soldiers and will play a vital role in ensuring Soldier readiness,” he added.

As former enlisted Soldiers with multiple deployment experience, the new physicians assistants know the importance of providing experienced medical care for Soldiers on the front lines.

“During my deployments and combat rotations as an Army medic, I helped take care of Soldiers, but always wanted to do more. Now with this education, I have better knowledge of medicine and feel I will be able to provide the type of medical care and services I’ve always wanted to,” said Beauvil.

The others said they agreed with Beuvil, adding that they are excited about now being able to “focus more on the medical aspect to ensure the health and readiness of their Soldiers and their families.”

While the program gave them excellent training, Braverman told the graduates that their education isn’t over and that they need to continue learning through their experiences.

“Ask questions, seek help and support throughout your career. It only helps you to be a better provider and maintain your passion for taking care of Soldiers,” Braverman advised them.

Capt. Brian Krustchinsky, Phase II Clinical Coordinator IPAP at CRDAMC, expanded on Braverman’s advice.

“You should never think that you have to go it alone. Rely on your team and peers. You will always have the support of the CRDAMC family and from others wherever else you may go,” said Krustchinsky, who has served as a PA for 10 years.

Krustchinsky also told the graduates they should be proud of their accomplishment, as it is a challenging and demanding program"one that is becoming increasingly more competitive to apply and get accepted to.

“Physicians Assistants are the number one growing medical profession, and the Military Inter-service Physician Assistant program is the largest in the nation. CRDAMC is one of 16 Phase II clinical sites,” he said.

According to the PA website, the Army trains approximately 150 Soldiers a year alongside candidates from the other services. Visit www.usarec.army.mil/armypa for more information on the program.

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Page last updated Tue May 24th, 2011 at 00:00