An Interview with An Interview with Benjamin J. Smith and the American Academy of PAs
Benjamin J Smith, MPAS, PA-C, DFAAPA – Assistant Professor, Director of Didactic Education at the Florida State University, School of Physician Assistant Practice
1. What is your organization’s interest in the Osteoarthritis Action Alliance?
Founded in 1968, AAPA is the national professional society for PAs. It represents a profession of more than 130,000 PAs across all medical and surgical specialties in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, U.S. territories, and the uniformed services. AAPA advocates and educates on behalf of the profession and the patients PAs serve.
AAPA participates in the Osteoarthritis Action Alliance because we are committed to ensuring PAs are equipped with knowledge and skills to effectively diagnose and treat patients with OA. OAAA provides an opportunity for AAPA and PAs to collaborate with an interprofessional team on national strategies to advance the care of patients with OA.
2. What do you think is the most important issue today related to osteoarthritis?
The prevalence of osteoarthritis lends itself to the likelihood that we will all be affected in some manner by this condition. The effects of osteoarthritis on individuals should be considered during visits with healthcare providers.
3. How does your work connect to issues in osteoarthritis?
Because AAPA represents and supports PAs in all specialties, we are uniquely positioned to impact the continuum of OA care. We provide educational opportunities to advance PAs’ knowledge and skills, advocate for the removal of practice barriers that inhibit optimal care, conduct research on PA practice, and connect PAs with key stakeholders to advance patient health.
4. What is a headline you’d like to see about osteoarthritis in five years?
Disease modifying treatment approach discovered for osteoarthritis
5. What is one interesting fact you’d like people to know about your organization?
Of the more than 130,000 PAs, over 74% now practice in non-primary care specialties. 19.2% practice in Family Medicine/General Practice, 4.7% practice in Internal Medicine/General Practice, 10.8% practice in Orthopaedics, and 0.5% practice in Rheumatology.