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New physicians assistant program opens in Santa Maria

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Posted at 5:10 PM, Sep 28, 2021

A.T. Still University of Health Sciences (ATSU), a comprehensive health professions graduate education institution, welcomed the inaugural class of it's Central Coast Physicians Program this weekend.

The new facility in Santa Maria will include offices for community health centers of the Central Coast that have helped develop the CCPA program.

Ninety students are chosen to enter the program which looks to help medically underserved communities.

"Growing up the way that I did in an underserved community I very often saw the effects of not having insurance of working in the fields and not having access to care and so I would like to be one of the providers who now provides care to those communities," said A.T. University student, Alexandra Hernandez.

Students arrived for orientation Monday at the new 27,000 square foot facility, which includes a large learning theater, clinical simulation rooms, library space, student break room, and faculty and staff workspaces.

Students will spend one year at the facility in Santa Maria before working with one of 20 community health centers for their second year.

Clinical practice experience areas include family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, emergency medicine, women's health, surgery, and behavioral health.

To learn more about the ATSU program, visit this website.