Chair of Physician Assistant Department Appointed to PAEA Council

In December of 2013, Chair of the Samuel Merritt University Physician Assistant (PA) Department, Dr. Mike De Rosa, was appointed to a two-year term on the Physician Assistant Education Association’s Government Relations and External Affairs Council.

The Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA) is the only national organization in the United States representing PA educational programs. It is the PAEA's mission is to pursue excellence, foster faculty development, advance the body of knowledge that defines quality education and patient-centered care, and promote diversity in all aspects of physician assistant education. Source:

De Rosa had previously served for four years on the board of the California Academy of Physician Assistants (CAPA). He was chair of CAPA's Program Relations Committee.

“With the passing of the Affordable Care Act and the need it presented for primary care providers, this meant policy makers started looking at Physician Assistants and Doctor of Nurse Practitioners, saying what are you going to do to fill the gap?” says De Rosa. “They started to look at education and because of that I got involved with state legislative efforts.”

De Rosa joined the SMU community in 1999 when he was hired to teach Human Gross Anatomy in the new Master Physician Assistant program. The following year, De Rosa became an Academic Coordinator.

De Rosa has always been interested in policy. In the middle of 2013, when his time on the CAPA board ended, he began talking to colleagues about continuing working on policy issues. He was then encouraged to apply to the Government Relations and External Affairs Council.

With this new role, De Rosa will be involved with advising the PA board on issues that affect PA education. He will be doing outreach to foundations and government agencies as well as advocacy work and helping to find funding for various programs such as rural clinics and loan forgiveness.

In January 2014, De Rosa will be traveling to Washington DC for an in-person meeting. He will spend a day meeting with legislators, discussing PA education.

top left: Dr. Mike De Rosa (right) with PA students

right: Dr. Mike De Rosa with SMU students on a medical trip to Panama - read more here

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