Physician Assistant Guide to Locum Tenens Jobs in Florida

Imagine for a moment that you are stuck in traffic on your way to work, bored of the same monotonous routine, and looking to experience new scenery and culture. Then, your phone vibrates. It’s your Barton recruiter with the answer. They share a new listing with great pay, your dream schedule, and it will start at a time that fits your current life. The only problem is that it is in Florida which you know very little about. That’s where Barton comes in!

What You Need to Know About Florida as a Locum Tenens Physician Assistant?

Our recruiters and staffing specialists do not expect you, the provider, to know ins-and-outs of every state in the country. To help you make an informed decision, we’ve compiled information from TripAdvisor, state government pages, and tourist information sources to give you a glimpse into life in Florida.

Click here for open physician jobs in Florida!

Florida: A Brief History

Florida, also known as “The Sunshine State,” has a rich history and a plethora of attractions that make it an enticing place to visit and work. Florida’s history dates back over 12,000 years when the first people inhabited the area. The state has been under Spanish, English, French, and Confederate rule before joining the United States as the 27th state in 1845. Notably, it was the site of the first permanent European settlement in the USA – St. Augustine, founded in 1565. Florida is a peninsula surrounded by water, offering diverse landscapes from hilly uplands to the famous Everglades National Park and the Florida Keys archipelago. 

With its rich history, diverse attractions, and an abundance of outdoor and cultural activities, Florida offers a compelling blend of opportunities for both leisure and work.

What is there to do and see in Florida?

  • With 1,200 miles of sandy beaches, Florida is a paradise for beach lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Explore the unique ecosystem of the Everglades National Park, home to diverse wildlife and breathtaking landscapes
  • St. Augustine, the oldest city in the United States, offers a glimpse into Florida’s rich history. Visitors can explore the state’s history through its numerous cultural and historical landmarks and museums.
  • Florida is home to world-renowned attractions such as Disney World and Universal Studios, making it a hub for entertainment and family-friendly activities. 
  • Florida is a haven for sports and outdoor enthusiasts. with over 1,250 golf courses and a range of water-based activities like fishing, boating, and scuba diving. 

How close is Florida to other cities and states?

  • Miami, Florida to Orlando, Florida: Approximately 230 miles; around 3.5 to 4 hours by car.
  • Miami, Florida to Atlanta, Georgia: Roughly 660 miles; about 9.5 to 10 hours by car.
  • Miami, Florida to Tampa, Florida: Around 280 miles; approximately 4 to 4.5 hours by car.
  • Miami, Florida to New Orleans, Louisiana: About 670 miles; approximately 10 to 11 hours by car.
  • Miami, Florida to Jacksonville, Florida: Approximately 340 miles; around 5 to 6 hours by car.

Physician Assistant Scope of Practice In Florida

What is the Scope of Practice for Physician Assistants in Florida?

Physician assistants (PAs) in Florida enjoy full practice authority, which grants them the ability to practice medicine to the full extent of their education, training, and experience. This means that PAs in Florida can diagnose and treat patients, order and interpret diagnostic tests, prescribe medications, and perform medical procedures without the direct supervision of a physician. Full practice authority for PAs in Florida has been in place since 2008, and it has been shown to improve access to care for patients, reduce costs, and improve the quality of care.

Can Physician Assistants Sign Death Certificates in Florida?

In Florida, physician assistants (PAs) are authorized to sign death certificates. To be eligible, PAs must complete an approved training program, obtain a certificate of completion, and have a valid medical license in good standing. The process varies depending on the death’s circumstances. If it was natural, PAs can sign the certificate after reviewing medical records and conducting a physical examination. In cases of unnatural death, consultation with a medical examiner or relevant authority may be necessary. PA’s ability to sign death certificates ensures accurate and timely death records and contributes to their valuable role in providing medical care to patients in Florida.

Does Florida Recognize Physician Assistants as Primary Care Providers? 

In the state of Florida, physician assistants (PAs) are recognized and licensed as healthcare professionals who provide primary care services under physician supervision. The Florida Statutes and Administrative Codes outline the scope of practice and responsibilities of PAs, allowing them to perform medical procedures, diagnose and treat illnesses, and prescribe medications. By acknowledging the role of PAs as primary care providers, Florida recognizes their contribution to expanding access to healthcare services and improving the quality of care for patients, especially in underserved communities.

Can Physician Assistants Prescribe Schedule II Drugs in Florida?

Yes, physician assistants can prescribe schedule II drugs in Florida. The Florida Board of Medicine grants this ability. PAs can prescribe medication for a range of conditions but must do so within their scope of practice and follow all applicable laws and regulations.

Do Physician Assistants Qualify for Medical Staff Membership in Florida?

In Florida, physician assistants (PAs) are eligible for medical staff membership. PAs are healthcare professionals licensed to practice medicine under a licensed physician’s supervision. Once granted membership, PAs can participate in patient care activities like reviewing charts, making decisions, performing procedures, and holding leadership positions. The inclusion of PAs in medical staff enhances patient care by providing a multidisciplinary approach, improving outcomes and satisfaction.

Can Physician Assistants Order Physical Therapy in Florida?

In Florida, physician assistants (PAs) are authorized to order physical therapy for their patients. This authority, granted by the state’s Board of Medicine, is crucial in underserved areas where access to healthcare professionals is limited. PAs are qualified to order physical therapy due to their training and continuing education requirements. Studies have shown that patient outcomes are similar and healthcare costs are lower when physical therapy is ordered by PAs compared to physicians. The Board of Medicine’s decision positively impacts healthcare in Florida by improving access to care and reducing costs.

Can Physician Assistants Sign Handicap Parking Permit Forms in Florida?

In Florida, certified physician assistants (PAs) are legally authorized to certify disability for parking placards. PAs are recognized as healthcare professionals who can evaluate and diagnose medical conditions that may qualify individuals for disability parking privileges. The authorization of PAs to certify disability for parking placards ensures that individuals with qualifying disabilities can access the parking accommodations they need.

Can Physician Assistants Sign POLST/POST/MOLST/MOST/COLST Forms in Florida? 

In Florida, PAs can sign Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) forms, which specify a patient’s end-of-life care preferences. PAs discuss these preferences with patients or their legal representatives before signing the form, which includes options like CPR, intubation, and mechanical ventilation. The form also covers pain management, comfort care, and religious support. POLST forms promote patient autonomy and facilitate open communication between patients, families, and healthcare providers, ensuring that end-of-life care is aligned with the patient’s wishes.

Can Physician Assistants Sign Do Not Resuscitate Orders in Florida?

Physicians in Florida are legally authorized to sign Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders, medical directives instructing healthcare professionals not to perform CPR or other life-sustaining measures in case of cardiac or respiratory arrest. Physicians must assess a patient’s condition, prognosis, and treatment options before signing a DNR order, and ensure the patient is competent to make decisions about their medical care and understands the consequences of the order. DNR orders are typically used in cases of terminal illness or persistent vegetative state, or when CPR is unlikely to be successful or would only prolong the dying process. They are legally binding and must be honored by healthcare professionals, with some exceptions such as pregnancy or a reasonable possibility of revival to a meaningful quality of life. DNR orders are an essential part of end-of-life care planning, allowing patients to make informed decisions and ensuring their wishes are respected.

What are the Continuing Education Requirements for Physician Assistants in Florida?

Florida mandates physician assistants (PAs) to complete 100 continuing education (CE) hours to renew their licenses. The Florida Board of Medicine sets these CE requirements to ensure PAs maintain their knowledge and skills for delivering high-quality patient care. PAs can fulfill these hours through various activities like conferences, workshops, and online courses, which must be pre-approved by the Board and directly related to medical practice. The CE requirement promotes ongoing professional development, keeping PAs up-to-date with the latest medical advancements. This requirement aligns with national standards for PA practice, demonstrating PA’s commitment to professionalism, patient safety, and continuous excellence in their field.

Find Your Next Physician Assistant Job with Barton

Barton coordinates your job search from start to finish!

1

TALK WITH A REP

We’ll schedule a phone consultation with a Barton Associates team member to discuss your interests, goals, and work history in order to get a sense of what you’re looking for in your next job.

Your Barton team will then go to work, compiling a list of open jobs in our extensive network that match your interests and skill set.

2

REVIEW YOUR OPTIONS

Once you’ve had a chance to evaluate your list of opportunities, your Barton rep will submit your information to facility you want to take an assignment at.

If there’s a match, we’ll work with the client manager on next steps.

3

START YOUR JOB!

Don’t worry! Barton Associates will handle licensing, credentialing, and travel arrangements before you arrive.

Your Barton rep will also work with your new facility to ensure you’re set up and ready to go on day one.

LEARN MORE

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