News Article

First guidance for doctors supervising PAs and MAPs

22 May 2024

Today, the British Medical Association has published the first guidance for doctors supervising physician associates (PAs) and other medical associate professionals (MAPs), in an attempt to clarify the somewhat fuzzy and at times difficult position they have found themselves in.

While MAPs have always had to work under the supervision of doctors, it is widely accepted that the responsibility of those doctors has not, until now, been made sufficiently clear, and there was a perceived risk of MAPs seeing patients without sufficient supervision.

The new guidance sets out for the first time which doctors should be available throughout a MAPs shift (previously, in some cases, supervisors have been unreachable) and how qualified they must be. This means, in practice, MAPs must have a named doctor with sufficient seniority and training supervising them at all times.

The guidance also emphasises the importance of supervising doctors having allotted time for discussions with PAs, and to review patients.

The guidance can be found here:

Further commentary from the BMA can be found here:

If you would like further context, Candesic Senior Partner Dr Michelle Tempest and Associate Dr Joe Taylor looked at the role of PAs in LaingBuisson’s HealthcareMarkets last month. Click to view the article.