Program Details


The University of Kentucky PA Academic Residency is dedicated to training Physician Assistant graduates in the fields of adults and children to provide exceptional healthcare to patients.


  • To educate and prepare recent PA graduates for transition to advanced Cardiology medicine
  • Meeting Cardiology healthcare needs in the community
  • Changing how PAs are educated in the everchanging healthcare delivery system from a physician training on the job of a new graduate in the field of Cardiology to now meeting the demands of employers (hospitals) to be ready to practice at a higher level of competency


  • Readiness to start working at a higher level of competency
  • Competitive advantage in employment
  • Meeting the need for sub-specialized care in the hospital industry

Program Goals

  • To prepare the physician assistant (PA) to deliver healthcare in the field of Cardiology beyond the new graduate-level to an advanced level of knowledge and skills
  • Educate competent physician assistant residents in Cardiology, to function at a higher level than a generalist PA
  • The education of the physician assistant for the practice of managing and caring for patients in the outpatient clinics encompasses education in basic science, training in cognitive and technical skills, development of clinical knowledge and maturity in the acquisition of clinical care thinking and judgment

Program Objectives

  • Medical Knowledge (not limited to)
    • Chest pain / Acute Coronary Syndrome
    • Coronary Artery Disease
    • Advanced management of Hypertension
    • Advanced management of Dyslipidemia
    • Advanced management of Heart Failure
    • Cardiomyopathy
    • Arrhythmias / Electrophysiology
    • Pericardial disease
    • Congenital Heart Disease
    • Structural Heart Disease
    • Interventional Cardiology
    • Cardiac surgery
    • Vascular Disease
    • Pulmonary Hypertension
    • Valvular heart disease
    • Cardiac imaging and diagnostic modalities
  • Patient care (not limited to)
    • Management of acute and chronic heart disease
    • Inpatient admissions, consultations, daily rounds, and discharges
    • Outpatient clinic
    • Pre- and post-operative management of valve replacement, percutaneous coronary intervention, angioplasty, pacemakers, CABG, etc.
    • Care of ICU patients
    • Advanced inpatient and outpatient management of CHF
    • Response to Code Blue / ACLS
    • Care and monitoring of patients with implanted cardiac devices (ICD, pacemaker, LVAD, CardioMEMS, IABP, etc)
    • Pharmacologic management of cardiovascular disease
    • Patient education, tobacco and lifestyle counseling, nutritional support
    • Cardiac rhythm and EKG interpretation
    • Interpretation of advanced cardiac imaging and diagnostic modalities (heart catheterization, echocardiography, cardiac MRI/CT/HeartFlow, stress testing, tilt table, CardioMEMS, etc)
    • Cardiac rehabilitation
    • Weekend call
  • Systems-Based Practice
    • Administrative Responsibility
    • Coordination and Transitions of Care
    • Billing and Coding
    • EMR training
  • Practice-Based Learning and Improvement
    • Improvement of Care
    • Teaching
    • Self-Directed Learning
    • Clinical skills and procedures
  • Professionalism:
    • Maintain appropriate personal behavior
    • Dress professionally
    • Adhere to accepted standards of medical ethics
    • Take personal responsibility for the care you provide
    • Be self-motivated
    • Promote of a healthy work environment
    • Practice within the confines of your licensure and Kentucky law
    • Abide by hospital Code of Conduct
  • Interpersonal and Communication Skills:
    • Effective Communication with Patients and Families
    • Effective communication with the Healthcare Team

Tentative Rotation Schedule

  • 1st-month         Inpatient cardiac care (Orientation to facilities, policies, EMR, workflows) (Emphasis EKG and cardiac rhythms, ACS)
  • 2nd-month        Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Noninvasive cardiology)
  • 3rd-month         Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Noninvasive cardiology)
  • 4th-month         Outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis CHF)
  • 5th-month         Inpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Interventional Cardiology)
  • 6th-month         Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Advanced Cardiac Imaging)
  • 7th-month         Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Electrophysiology)
  • 8th-month         Inpatient cardiac care (Emphasis CVICU / Critical Care / CT Surgery)
  • 9th-month         Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Structural Cardiology)
  • 10th-month       Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care (Emphasis Vascular Disease)
  • 11th-month       Elective (may request from the Clinical Director, your choice)
  • 12th-month       Integrated inpatient / outpatient cardiac care

12 months Total

Procedural Competencies


  1. Cardiovascular physical exam
  2. EKG and rhythm interpretation
  3. CardioMEMS interrogation and interpretation
  4. Basic interpretation of echocardiogram, cardiac CT and MRI
  5. Bedside pacemaker/ICD interrogation and interpretation
  6. Inpatient management of hemodynamics and medical cardiac support devices


Essential Experiences

  1. Observation of outpatient stress testing
  2. Observation of heart catheterization and PCI
  3. Observation of transesophageal echo and cardioversion
  4. Observation of pacemaker insertion
  5. Observation of ICD insertion
  6. Observation of SVT ablation
  7. Observation of AFib ablation
  8. Observation of left atrial appendage occlusive device insertion
  9. Observation of transcatheter aortic valve replacement
  10. Observation of transcatheter mitral valve repair
  11. Observation of coronary artery bypass graft
  12. Observation of surgical valve replacement
  13. Tour of Cardiac Rehabilitation facilities


  1. Daily rounding on patients
  2. Hospital lectures and conferences
  3. Morbidity and Mortality (every other month) (UK)
  4. Attendance of Quarterly Annual Practice Meetings (KDMC)
  5. Attendance of monthly Advanced Practice, Cardiology Operations, and Heart and Vascular Section Meetings (KDMC)
  6. Attend one or more weekly structural heart co-disciplinary meetings (KDMC)
  7. Weekly check-ins with Clinical Director or Assistant Clinical Director
  8. Volunteer at KDMC community event
  9. Recommend: one regional/national conference (annually)