Minnesota Physician Assistants Facts and Data 2004

The Office of Rural Health & Primary Care (ORHPC) asks physician assistants to answer questions about their employment status and the nature of their practices each year when they renew their licenses. Response to the survey is voluntary and does not affect license renewal.

NOTE: In tables below, “urban” is defined to include seven Twin City metropolitan counties (Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott and Washington) and the cities of Duluth, Rochester and St. Cloud.  


Numbers of Physician Assistants

As of June 30, 2004, 804 physician assistants held Minnesota licenses. Some of these may have been retired or not working as physician assistants, while others may have been living or practicing in other states.

The ORHPC received survey responses from 764 physician assistants for 2004. Most responses were from physician assistants renewing licenses, but many first-time licensees also responded. The 764 respondents represented 95 percent of licensed physician assistants.

The exact number of physician assistants practicing in Minnesota is not known. Not all of the 804 physician assistants holding Minnesota licenses in 2004 would have been working as physician assistants in Minnesota. An unknown number would have been working in other jobs or not working due to unemployment, illness, retirement or other reasons.

At the time of license renewal, 697, or 91 percent, of survey respondents said they were working at least part time at a primary practice site in Minnesota. Applied to the total number of licensees, this percentage produces an estimate of about 730 physician assistants actually working at a Minnesota practice site.

This estimate is lower than the number of 830 physician assistant jobs estimated by the Minnesota Department of Trade and Economic Development for the second quarter of 2004.

Using the July 1, 2004, population estimate for Minnesota, 730 physician assistants equate to about 14 active physician assistants per 100,000 people. Using an estimate of 11,100 active physicians, there is one physician assistant for every 15 physicians practicing in Minnesota.

Because of different data sources and definitions, the estimate of 14 active physician assistants per 100,000 population is not directly comparable to other reported data. The Bureau of Health Professions in the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration reported that Minnesota had 711 practicing physician assistants in 2000, or 14.4 per 100,000 people, matching the national rate of 14.4.

All data reported below is for physician assistants who work at least part time at a primary practice site in Minnesota, according to the Office of Rural Health & Primary Care survey of physician assistants renewing licenses for 2004.

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Gender of Physician Assistants by age and location, 2004

AGE

N MALE FEMALE

All physician assistants

697

40.2%

59.8%

Under 35

235

27.7%

72.3%

35-44

206

37.9%

62.1%

45-54

183

47.0%

53.0%

55-64

66

71.2%

28.8%

65 and older

7

57.1%

42.9%

Urban locations

478

42.1%

57.9%

Rural locations

219

36.1%

63.9%

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Age of Physician Assistants Active in Minnesota by Location  

Age Group

Statewide
n = 697
respondents

Urban
n = 478
respondents

Rural
n = 219
respondents

Less than 35

33.7%

36.8%

26.9%

35-44

29.6%

30.1%

28.3%

45-54

26.3%

23.2%

32.9%

55-64

9.5%

8.8%

11.0%

65 and older

1.0%

1.0%

.9%

Total

100.0%

100.0%

100.0%

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Physician Assistant Specialties

Family Medicine
44%
Pediatrics
1%
Orthopedics
12%
Emergency Medicine
7%
General Internal Medicine
5%
Other
31%

Respondents were asked to check only one primary specialty.


Primary Practice Settings by Location Physician Assistants Active in Minnesota

Type of Site

All Physician assistants

Urban

Rural

N = respondents

649

441

208

Office/clinic

78.4%

73.0%

89.9%

Hospital – inpatient

14.3%

18.8%

4.8%

Other

7.3%

8.2%

5.3%

Gender by Type of Primary Practice Site Physician Assistants Active in Minnesota  

 Type of Site

 N

 Male

Female

Office/clinic

509

37.5%

62.5%

Hospital – inpatient

93

49.5%

50.5%

Other

47

44.7%

53.5%

Primary Professional Activity Physician Assistants Active in Minnesota

Primary Activity
Percent of respondents
Patient care
97.3%
Administration
.7%
Other
2.0%

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Updated Tuesday, 16-Nov-2010 12:28:44 CST