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NCCPA Newsletter
National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA)1/29/2018
January 2018

Registration is Now Open for the Recertification Pilot

Introducing 2018 NCCPA Board Chair Paul Lombardo, MPS, PA-C Emeritus

NCCPA Launches Podcast Series

You Asked, We Answered: Policy Change Makes the CAQ a More Attractive Option to Many

New Look, New Content Promoting PAs at

PA History Society

PAs and PA Students Use Grants to Impact Health

 Registration is Now Open for the Recertification Pilot

Since registration opened on January 2, over 3,000 PAs have already signed up for the recertification pilot that will launch next year. This pilot of an alternative to PANRE is open to all PAs who are due to recertify this year or next. 

However, registration is open only until June 30, 2018.

Pilot participants will answer 25 questions per quarter in 2019 and 2020. Questions can be answered from any mobile device, anywhere and on your own schedule within each quarter. Full details are available at:

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Introducing 2018 NCCPA Board Chair Paul Lombardo, MPS, PA-C Emeritus

As we started last fall, NCCPA News will introduce one Board member every month.

The 2018 Board of Directors of NCCPA is chaired by Paul Lombardo, MPS, PA-C Emeritus.

Paul is the first PA to serve on the governing boards of the profession's four largest national organizations. He is a past president of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) and the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA), and he also served on the board of the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) as treasurer.

A longtime leader in the profession, he is also a past president of the New York State Society of PAs and of AAPA’s PA Foundation.

Paul retired as Chair of the Stony Brook University Department of PA Education, where he also served as Clinical Associate Professor and contributed to the advancement of the PA profession through scholarly activity, teaching and mentoring thousands of students. While at Stony Brook, he also practiced clinically in occupational medicine.

“Certification is important because it sets us apart as healthcare providers,” he says. “It is important that we proudly share our qualifications with our patients so they better understand our ability to deliver quality care in every specialty and clinical setting.”

“Paul has pioneered efforts to promote the PA profession to each of its constituencies,” says NCCPA President and CEO Dawn Morton-Rias, Ed.D, PA-C. “Demand for PAs is at an all-time high, and Paul’s leadership will help NCCPA continue to ensure that certified PAs are well represented and the PA-C credential continues to designate the high care standards that patients expect for themselves and their families.”

A 1973 graduate of the inaugural PA class at Stony Brook University, he completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Missouri and received his MPS at The New School in NYC.

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NCCPA Launches Podcast Series

Now available: The first in a series of Podcasts: "5 Answers from NCCPA."

This first Podcast answers five questions about preparing for PANCE. The next one will feature answers to questions about the alternative to PANRE pilot. What do you want to know more about? Send us your suggested topics to:

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You Asked, We Answered: Policy Change Makes the CAQ a More Attractive Option to Many

Starting this year, the physician attestation form required as proof of patient/procedure experience is no longer required before taking a Certificate of Added Qualification (CAQ) specialty exam. Now PAs seeking a CAQ can wait until after passing the exam to ask a physician to complete the form.

So, what are you waiting for?

CAQ exams will be administered at Pearson VUE centers nationwide Apr. 2-3 and Sept. 10-15. The application deadline for the spring exams is March 30. Learn more about the CAQ program and requirements, and then sign in to register to take advantage of the Spring (Apr. 2-3) or Fall (Sept. 10-15) exam administrations.

NCCPA offers CAQs in:

Cardiovascular and thoracic surgery
Emergency medicine
Hospital medicine
Orthopaedic surgery

Special opportunity for PAs looking to earn a CAQ in Emergency Medicine: you can complete your CME requirements at the May 3-7 SEMPA 360 Conference in San Antonio and take a special administration of the Emergency Medicine Specialty Exam at the two Pearson VUE locations in San Antonio on May 7-8. In the past, the exam after the SEMPA conference has sold out all seats, so go online and sign up now at

For those who aren’t ready to take a CAQ exam in April, CAQ exams will be offered again Sept. 10-15 at Pearson VUE exam centers across the country. So plan your CME early in the year, and apply for a seat at the exam center of your choice as soon as possible.

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 New Look, New Content Promoting PAs at 

If you’ve been to our website,, you’ve seen the flipbooks, videos, PA profiles and more on this interactive site that promotes the wide range of ways certified PAs are improving health and providing high quality care. We are pleased to show you those same great features, but with a new, fresh look and expanded content.

Some of the things you’ll find are a large collection of more than 70 profiles of certified PAs who are making a difference. Check it out and see who you know! New flipbooks and videos, including the 2016 Statistical Report on Certified PAs, which includes information on age, gender, education and more, are in the “Prepared and Proven” area of the site. We love to spotlight PAs making a difference! Go to the resources page to submit your story or the story of a PA you know making a difference.

We are excited and passionate about what you do and want to get the message out there! Help us do that by sharing and #PAsDoThat.

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Do you have photographs, short videos, documents or memorabilia related to the PA profession from the 1990s and early 2000s that you would like to donate to the PA History Society? If so, please email a description of what you have, and our archivist will let you know if we can include your items in our Collection & Archives.

Space is available to honor a military or uniformed services PA with an engraved brick paver in the only Veterans Garden to honor strictly PAs. The beautiful and tranquil garden is located at the Eugene Stead Center in Durham, NC.

          PA History Society Logo    PA History Society Logo

A list of PA veterans and those currently serving in the military or uniformed services can be found on the Society’s website, along with the details on how to order an engraved paver to honor your special PA.

Travel through time via the Society’s online PA Timeline from 1650, listen to fascinating stories from a variety of PAs, young and old, featured on the Society’s Oral Histories website page, or test your “PA history” knowledge on our Trivia page.

Read the latest edition of the Society’s newsletter, Historical Happenings and stay up-to-date on "all things PA history" by connecting with u s on social media. Please be sure to “like” PA History Society on Facebook to receive weekly updates and follow the Society on TwitterLinkedIn and our Blog.


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PA History Society Logo PAs and PA Students Use Grants to Impact Health 

Congratulations to certified PAs and PA students who received nccPA Health Foundation grants during the 2017 cycle. Their commitment to improving health maintains a six-year tradition of funded grants, totaling nearly $95,000.   

“At the Foundation, our goal is to support PA efforts to create new models and partnerships that improve health,” said Foundation Board Chair Ted Wendel, PhD. “Practicing PAs and PA students continue to respond to this goal by identifying and responding to needs in their communities, caring for the underserved, and filling gaps in patient education and care.”   

In 2017, the Foundation awarded 18 grants, including 10 diverse projects that encouraged PAs to design activities to promote access and equitable care and 8 projects focused on oral health.  Grants were awarded to PAs in 12 states, including Alabama, California, Colorado, Kansas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin. 

Please join us in applauding all grantees, and watch the Foundation’s Grantee Spotlight to learn about the impact of funded projects.

Ready to make a difference in your community? Apply for the Foundation’s Be the CHANGE grant, to create health access now for greater equity through patient education, screenings, or other outreach to deliver care.


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At NCCPA, we work to promote the role, impact and qualifications of Certified PAs in many ways including through the media. Below are recently published articles.

Want to get involved? If you have a great article idea or a story to share, contact Communcations Director, Mary Rittle, at

What’s Happening at NCCPA? Check out our new video “December 2017: NCCPA in 60 Seconds!” which portrays just some of the things that happened at NCCPA last month. 

Career Center

PA Health Foundation


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The National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants is dedicated to serving the interest of the public. We do so with a passionate belief that certified physician assistants are essential members of the health care delivery team who provide millions access to more affordable, high quality health care.

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