Summer Newsletter 2021

President's Message from Natalie Weber

Weber Natalie Aug2018 web It’s that time of year to write my farewell message as current president and pass the reins to Joshua Gustafson, your incoming IPAS president. It has been a pleasure serving you, and I look forward to remaining active as past-president. My goal when I joined the board was to engage Iowa PAs in IPAS events and initiatives to build and provide a community of support. While this goal was not fully realized due to unforeseen barriers surrounding everything COVID-19, we were able to maintain opportunities for learning and networking virtually. The importance of this goal, however, is ongoing as PA involvement in state and regional organizations is greatly underrepresented. It’s been eye-opening to see the work being done behind the scenes for continuing education events and PA advocacy in Iowa. Kudos to the individuals who continue to show up and volunteer their time to IPAS committees. Your commitment to the PA profession is admirable and does not go unnoticed. For those that haven’t taken an opportunity to get involved, now is the time. Reach out, let us know your interests, and we can connect you with board or committee members. We have so many gifts and talents right here in Iowa that should not go unrecognized!

I am eager for the return of in-person events and hearing your stories from the last year. We have quite the year in front of us with the recent name change approval and resuming our harmonization bill that just missed the second funnel this year. I look forward to continuing work with the legislative team to advance PAs in Iowa by removing unnecessary barriers preventing us from working to our full scope of practice and making us less competitive for hiring.

I can’t wait to see where we are one year later! As always, thank you for your continued support of IPAS through membership. Have a great summer!

gustafson joshua 1548491368President-Elect Message from Josh Gustafson

Happy Summer Everyone,

As I’m writing this, summer hasn’t officially begun yet but the last week of mid-90s has sure made it feel that way, but none the less it is still wonderful to be outside, with SPF 50 of course! I hope this finds all you PAs out there doing well as we start to transition to our lives with COVID. Life and businesses are both picking up speed again which brings both a sense of normalcy and a sense of being overwhelmed. Make sure to put aside time to do those things that have helped you get through the last 1-2 years such as Zoom calls with friends and family, increased time in the great outdoors, and those new hobbies you have picked up. Balance is important in these busy lives we lead and as I reflect on the recent past, I feel blessed by this recognition of how good some of these things are for us.
I want to take this time to thank Natalie for all her hard work the past year. Thank goodness I have such big feet as those are big shoes to fill, but I will try my best to live up to the good example she has set over the last one year.

I am excited for the things to come with IPAS over the rest of 2021 and into 2022. Our legislative committee is doing great things, our student groups continue to add more and more to our society, and we have new board members to bring new ideas.

All the best to you and your family and look forward to seeing more of you in the year(s) to come!

Incoming President,

Josh Gustafson


Legislative Update from Jim Earel


Another legislative session has come and gone here in Iowa, and with it lots of changes all over the state. IPAS had a harmonization bill that we introduced, but some unforeseen factors slowed the bill down and by the time it got out of the House, there wasn’t time for the Senate to get it through committee before the second funnel. Next year, it will still be alive in the Senate, and will only need to pass through the Senate to be passed and sent to the Governor's office for signature. Stay tuned for that early next year as we will be ramping up our messaging early in the session to get the bill moving and passed as quickly as possible.

Some notable changes from the legislature that affect PAs:

  • Amended the rural loan repayment program to change definitions of areas that would qualify, as well including OB/GYN services within the program
  • Amended the healthcare professional recruitment program to include any institution of higher learning in the state, expands those who qualify for the program to include OT and ATC
  • Change structure for how mental health is funded in the state
  • Mandate telehealth insurance coverage for mental health, retroactive to 1/1/21

Here at IPAS, we are looking toward the future and how we can best make changes for PAs in the state. Part of that is offering thanks to those legislators that have helped IPAS the most. Our PAC funds are designed for that purpose, and we are gearing up for our PAC drive soon. Please, contribute something, even if it’s only a few dollars, because if all members just contributed 5 dollars, we would have over $2,500 in donations! We are looking at options for thank you gifts for contributions this year as well, as a way to show that this really matters, and hopefully will get those who have not contributed in the past, to do so!

IPAS Legislative Committee is also looking ahead at the coming 2021 session, and with our bill from last year still hanging in the Senate, it might be a quiet year for PAs in the legislature. However, I want you all to know, that I have heard your concerns about supervision, the supervisory agreement, and loss of opportunity in the job marketplace and I am working on all of those issues with key players to see if we can work on making changes in these areas to help make PA practice more flexible and competitive in the marketplace.

As always, if you have concerns or ideas, please let me know! I can make the most change and do the most good, when I have an outpouring of concern throughout the state on common issues that affect us all.

Have a good summer!

Jim Earel PA-C
IPAS Legislative Committee Chair

Fall CME - Save the Date!


 The Fall CME will be held October 4-6, 2021 virtually, online. Our Fall CME Chair, Jeremy Nelson of St. Luke’s Emergency Room and the committee have been working hard on securing sessions and presenters.

Please note that we’re always welcoming new committee members to join either the Fall or Spring CME Committees, and you can do so by contacting Devin, the IPAS CME Coordinator (

Student Reports

Northwestern College
Our PA-2s are currently in their last few months of didactic year and anxiously preparing to start rotations in August. They have just finished up their women’s health module which included a day at the University of Nebraska Medical center conducting male and female exams on standardized patients and will be working through peds, mental health, geriatrics, and surgery over this semester.
On June 1st, we welcomed to campus the class of 2023 and were able to start forming connections at a program wide grill out. Towards the end of the Summer, we will be holding a class vote for various positions and will soon be introducing NW’s new IPAS student representatives.

University of Dubuque
PA1s have started their summer term, and helped to plant 40 trees in May with Dubuque Trees Forever. The class continues to volunteer at the food pantry to help those students remaining on campus during the term. PA2s are approaching the half way point of their clinical rotations, and working on their capstone projects. We have been gearing up to welcome the incoming class at the end of July, and continued to mentor them through this transition.

Des Moines University PA Program Update
Our PA-23s have officially completed their first 2 weeks of class and are expecting their first set of exams this week. We hope that our revamped Big-Little program has helped make the transition a little easier with increase accessibility to other “Bigs” as well as an earlier contact date and more structured contacts.

PA-21s have officially graduated. With historically above average PANCE pass rates we are sure this class with do an incredible job becoming certified. With our profession being rated the #1 best profession by U.S. News & World Report we hope that the job market reflects this and wish them the best of luck and hopefully you see them out in the work force.

PA-22s are starting their 1st clinical rotations on Monday June 14th. After a long year dealing with limited patient interactions the anxiety is palpable. Our final hands on OSCE proved to our faculty and ourselves that we are all well prepared for our final year.

With this final update, we look forward to handing our positions off to the PA-23 class representatives so that they can learn about IPAS and begin advocating for their future professions while bringing new ideas to the table. We are proud to have advocated for the creation of the Social Media Task Force, learned how our state society works and encouraged our class to become involved.

University of Iowa
The class of 2021 is in the middle of their rotations and starting to think about resumes and job applications before they graduate in December. The class of 2022 is busy with summer classes and preparing orientation for the class of 2023! We are excited to welcome our new class starting in August and help prepare them to be successful in PA school.

  AAPA House of Delegates Update

doobaymarc 1On May 24, 2021, the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) House of Delegates (HOD) adopted by majority vote of 198 to 68 a resolution changing the official title of our profession from “Physician Assistant” to “Physician Associate”. This title change was the culmination of years of investigation and consultation with AAPA members, institutional leaders, and various other stakeholders. The next steps in the execution of this complex undertaking will be facilitated by the AAPA Board of Directors. Early conversations estimate a five-year timeline for implementation with an estimated cost of about 22 million dollars, per the Title Change Investigation (TCI) report. In the interim, AAPA’s legal counsel has advised PAs refrain representing themselves as “Physician Associates”. Local considerations centered on the title change, as well as ongoing legislative initiatives such as Optimal Team Practice (OTP), will be determined by each PA state chapter and other organizations (PAEA, NCCPA, ARC-PA).

Other key legislative actions included 1) amending and affirming opposition to mandatory doctoral training as the entry-level professional degree, while also supporting PA-specific post-professional doctoral degrees as one option for PAs to engage in lifelong learning; 2) adopting a position opposing all forms of racism; and 3) amending and affirming policy to foster a culture that embraces the value of justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as provide and support ongoing educational experiences that are focused on diversity, healthcare disparity issues, and social determinants of health.

Now, as we navigate the future ahead, it is time for our IPAS members—regardless of title preference--to come together, collectively support our profession, and continue to provide the high-quality healthcare for our patients for which we are well-known.

- Marc Doobay

Results for Your Board Of Directors Election

Thank you to all those who cast their vote in our 2021-2022 Board of Directors Election!  Please welcome our incoming 2021-2022 Board along with our HOD Representatives to the AAPA.

Board Of Directors 2022

  Thank You for Supporting Spring CME!

The Spring CME Committee worked hard to identify quality speakers and content for the two-day schedule. Sessions highlighted items from a legislative update with the IPAS lobbyists, AAPA representative Erika Miller, and many other quality medical education sessions.

Your continuous support and promotion of IPAS CME events is appreciated, as we work to extend our reach to more PAs, potential sponsors and exhibitors, and speakers from across the nation. Consider liking the IPAS Facebook page, sharing status updates, posting a CME flyer in your workspace, and forwarding registration emails to colleagues and former classmates. If you are ever in need of resources to help share these opportunities, we are always happy to provide those directly to you.

  IPAS Announcements


Scholarships are available to any student currently studying at a PA Program in Iowa.  Students, please take a moment to visit the Scholarship Information page on our website and submit your application soon!  The deadline for submissions is September 5th, and there will be no extension of this deadline.

PA of the Year1



Do you know a friend or colleague that goes above and beyond as a PA?  Do they go out of their way to support their community and patients?  They sound like a great candidate for PA of the Year - you should nominate them via this form and send it in to the IPAS office!


Looking to Get Involved?:  If you're interested in getting involved in IPAS or if you would like more information, please contact the IPAS office:




  Additional Announcements

5th Annual Hematology, Oncology and Blood & Marrow Transplant for NP & PAs 2021 – Live & Livestream
August 20-22, 2021
Rochester, MN & Livestream

Title: Optimizing Potential 2021 - LIVESTREAM
Rekindle meaning in work and home life in this convenient half-day session. Led by a preventive and occupational psychiatrist, this courses offers a solutions-focused approach to lead participants in exploring personal lifestyle habits, values, ideal work and life scenarios, concrete goals, and the importance of positive support systems.
Course Date: November 5, 2021
Registration Website:

Title: 95th Annual Clinical Reviews
The 95th Annual Clinical Reviews seeks to update primary care providers on the latest recommendations involving medical subspecialties. The course provides a comprehensive program of lectures on topics of general interest in medicine, surgery, and pediatrics relevant to clinical practice. This course offers both live (in-person) and livestream (virtual) registration options.
Course Dates: November 8-9, 2021
Location: Rochester, MN
Registration Website: