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Improve access to medical care in South Dakota

Action Steps and Accountability Metrics

As stated in the University of South Dakota PA program mission statement, the program provides a comprehensive primary care education that prepares graduates to deliver high-quality health care to meet the needs of patients in South Dakota and the surrounding region.

The PA program strives to:

  • Provide educational activities designed to promote higher order thinking and integration of material that will prepare students to practice using an interprofessional team-based health care delivery approach. This is evinced by:
    • Interprofessional simulation activities woven throughout clinical medicine curriculum.  
    • Interprofessional training event
    • Core Disaster Life Support
    • Rural/Underserved Primary Care Clinical Rotation
    • REHPS (Rural Experiences for Health Professional Students) opportunity
  • Meet or exceed 32 percent of alumni practicing in a primary care field. 
    • 49 percent of graduates practice in a primary care setting, i.e., family medicine, general internal medicine, pediatrics, women's health. 
  • Meet or exceed 60 percent of graduates practicing in South Dakota. 
    •  50 percent of USD PA graduates practice in South Dakota.
    • Of those, 44 percent practice in rural/frontier communities, i.e. communities with a population of 50,000 or fewer.
    • Over the last four graduating classes (2016-2020), 59 percent of USD PA graduates practice in South Dakota. 
      •  1 unknown 2019
      • 7 unknown 2020

The map below represents the counties where PA program alumni practice in South Dakota: