Accreditation News

The ARC-PA accepted the plan for the Misericordia University PA Program to withdraw from the ARC-PA accreditation process effective August 30, 2017. The program will remain on Accreditation-Probation until that time. The program will not accept any new students for enrollment. Specific questions regarding the Program and its plans should be directed to the Program Director and/or appropriate institutional official(s). Full news release below:


Misericordia to voluntarily withdraw from ARC-PA accreditation process effective Aug. 30, 2017

Posted 10/22/2015 03:10PM

The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) has accepted Misericordia University's plan to voluntarily withdraw from the ARC-PA accreditation process effective Aug. 30, 2017. Until that time, the graduate program will remain on accreditation probation and be eligible to complete academic instruction to two classes of graduate students after which time the university will be eligible to reapply for accreditation.


"Voluntarily withdrawing from the accreditation process does not indicate a lack of support for physician assistant education at Misericordia,'' said Charles Brody, Ph.D., vice president of Academic Affairs. "It enables us to graduate two more classes of graduate students from an accredited program, continue to review what we did well and what we did not, and to be eligible to apply for provisional accreditation for a newly revamped program. We see this route as being in the best long-term interests of our students and in the quality of the program.''

Graduate students in their didactic and clinical years will complete the program and be eligible to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PAN CE) following completion of their studies in August 2016 and August 2017. The Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies program will not accept new students for enrollment during that time.

Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Science degree program in medical science can complete their undergraduate degree and apply to a graduate school in order to complete their education to become certified physician assistants. The undergraduate portion of the program will continue to accept new students.

"Our students are our utmost concern,'' said Thomas J. Botzman, Ph.D., president of Misericordia University. "We will continue to work with them in myriad ways to ensure their dreams of becoming the next generation of health care clinicians are realized.''

Representatives of Misericordia University held three individualized group meetings for the 87 students enrolled in the Bachelor of Science degree in medical science and Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies on Thursday, Oct. 22. The university scheduled meetings with fourth- and fifth-year graduate students (37), as well as third-year students (17), and students in their first (16) and second (17) year of studies in the undergraduate program to explain the university's withdrawal from the accreditation process and how it affects their academic and professional goals.

"Misericordia has encouraged students who have additional questions or concerns to address them with the program director or the Department of Academic Affairs,'' said Dr. Brody. "The university remains committed to their success now and in the future.''

Misericordia University was granted provisional accreditation in 2012 by ARC-PA for a program leading to a Master of Science degree in Physician Assistant Studies. Two classes of students have already graduated from the program in 2014 and 2015.

ARC-PA carried out a site visit to the program in March 2015, with findings reviewed at ARC-PA's September commission meeting. At the end of September, ARC-PA notified Misericordia about its findings and the university's options for responding to the report. ARC-PA formally accepted Misericordia University's plan to voluntarily withdraw from the ARC-PA accreditation process on Thursday, Oct. 22.



Physician assistant programs in the United States are accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA), 12000 Findley Road, Suite 150, Johns Creek, GA, 30079.

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