Physician Associate School Interview Questions (UK)

Advice & Insight From PA Application Specialists

Motivation and Insight into the career of a Physician Associate

  • Describe the role of a physician associate. How does it differ from that of a doctor?
  • When were you first aware of the role of physician associates?
  • Why are you interested in studying at this university in particular?
  • What do you think you will bring to our university’s PA program?
  • How can you show that your learning style will allow you to succeed in what is known to be a challenging program?
  • How does a physician associate’s role differ from a nurse practitioner’s?
  • What can you tell me about the history of physician associates in the UK?
  • What changes would you make to the NHS if you were made Health Secretary?
  • What is particularly attractive about the course at our university?
  • How do you think that the roles and responsibilities of physician associates will change in the next ten years? How about in the next twenty
  • Is it possible for a PA to work alone (independent of a doctor)?
  • Please describe this part of your personal statement to us in more detail.
  • Is there a particular part of the NHS that interests you? Are there particular specialties or areas of healthcare that you find more or less interesting?
  • Do you think that PAs will take on a greater part of the burden of care in the UK?
  • What are the most important current challenges to global health in general?
  • Tell us about COVID-19 and how it has affected the NHS.
  • What do you think healthcare will look like in 50 years? What about in 25 or 30 years?
  • Which body regulates physician associates in the UK?
  • What do you think a typical day looks like?
  • What can you tell us about the history of the NHS?
  • How is the NHS run today?
  • What are the 6Cs?
  • Tell us about COVID-19.
  • What healthcare topics have stood out to you recently, other than COVID-19?

Ethical Dilemmas

  • Should the NHS offer treatment for self-inflicted problems? As an example, should it treat smokers whose condition is due to their decision to smoke?
  • Where do you stand on the topic of physician assisted suicide?
  • How would you react if you found that junior doctors on your ward were not dealing with their responsibilities, and instead leaving them to you?
  • How would you react if you found that one of your fellow PAs had been belittling the nurses on your ward, and speaking about them in negative terms to patients?
  • Is it right for healthcare workers to be able to strike? Can you think of any particular examples of healthcare workers striking in the UK?
  • Is it right for parents to be able to smoke in front of their children?
  • Is the UK government’s drug policy working?
  • Imagine you discover that a senior surgeon in your hospital has been inebriated at work multiple times. How would you deal with this situation?
  • What would you say to a patient who was repeatedly sexist?
  • Should the NHS be privatised or altered in another way? Are its goals sensible in the 21st century?
  • Imagine that you are on a train as a qualified PA, and an announcement is heard through the speaker system, asking if there are any doctors on board. Would you immediately stand up and volunteer your services?

Communication Stations

  • How is empathy important to physician associates?
  • Can you explain the difference between sympathy and empathy?

Teamwork Tasks

  • Tell us about a time that a team that you were part of failed, and what you learnt from this.
  • Tell me about a team that you have learned in. Do you find that you learn well in teams in general?
  • What can you tell me about the role of the multidisciplinary team in Medicine in the NHS?
  • Please provide us with an example of your leadership ability.
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General / Personal Statements

  • Have you ever had to face adversity?
  • How do you deal with pressure in general?
  • What activities or hobbies allow you to relax?
  • What do you think of the city in which our university is based?
  • Imagine we asked your friends to describe you in three words or phrases. What would they say?
  • Imagine that we asked your friends to describe your greatest weakness to us in great detail. What might they say?
  • How do you organise your days in general?
  • Tell us about yourself. You have five minutes in which to give an overview of your life and your interest in the PA profession.

Physician Associate School Interview Questions (UK)

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