Ran An graduated in July 2020 and began practicing as a Physician Assistant (PA) at St. Boniface Hospital Cardiac Sciences.

“I was a registered nurse for seven years and worked on a vascular surgery unit and ICU. I worked with multiple PAs who exposed me to the profession, and it allowed me to see there was an opportunity to expand my career.”

Cardiac Sciences includes cardiac surgery and cardiology, so most of Ran’s patients have had major cardiac events or deterioration of their heart function. A typical day for Ran begins with a review of the patient load for the day, what patient issues occurred overnight, what patient issues need to be addressed that day and what challenges there may be to send a patient home. This review forms the basis of developing a plan for the day for each patient, including ordering appropriate investigations, prescribing medications, and collaborating with other allied health-care teams. She also assists with admitting new patients to the ward by conducting patient histories and physicals.

“Starting my career as a PA during COVID-19 certainly heightened my awareness of the need for personal protective equipment and the importance of wearing it properly to prevent transmission of the virus. As well, keeping up-to-date with COVID infection prevention and control is paramount for the safety of our patients and their families as well as for our own safety and the safety of our families.”

An feels privileged to be working with cardiac patients.

“This was the right career choice for me. Any cardiac event is always life-changing for the patient and I am proud to play a role in their care in the hospital as well as helping them make choices that will lead to their well-being when they leave the hospital.”

Physician Assistant

Alexandra Abt has been a Physician Assistant in Acute Care Family Medicine Department at the Dauphin Regional Health Centre for two years. Alexandra works on the 40-bed in-patient ward along- side 24 family physicians.

A typical day for Alexandra involves rounds, assessing patients, ordering blood work and imaging, working with doctors, residents, nurses, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, home care, communicating with physicians regarding care plans and discharge plans.

Working in rural Manitoba, Abt recalls an occasion where her intervention ensured a patient with multiple organ issues received life-saving care from a specialist in Winnipeg and was able to be returned to Dauphin for on-going care.

“I love the variety of my work,” said Alexandra, adding, “it is truly a multi-disciplinary approach to patient care in hospital and ensuring continuity of care as we transition patients home safely.”

Physician Assistant

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