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Physician Associate and Anaesthesia Associate regulation is changing

We recently hosted a free webinar to demonstrate our new Physician Associate (PA) Revalidation product. It was great to go through the system with future users and answer your questions.

Click to view the recording here.

Our users had some questions about how Physician Associate (PA) and Anaesthesia Associate (AA) Revalidation will be introduced and we wanted to share what we know so far.

In July 2019, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) was asked to begin to regulate both PAs and AAs. The GMC are currently creating the policies and procedures for this. New legislation is needed before regulation can start and we understand this is likely to be introduced along a timetable that means regulation can begin in summer 2023 at the earliest.


This will look similar to the existing regulation/revalidation for doctors, including:

  • Registration
  • Education
  • Assessment
  • Fitness to Practise

Once regulation starts, all PAs and AAs will have to join the GMC register to be able to practise in the UK. Subject to a consultation, the GMC anticipate that those who are already qualified and/or practising in the UK will have up to two years to gain registration.


Once regulation begins, the GMC will be responsible for setting the standards for course providers and ensuring that those standards are met. The GMS state that they are currently part way through first QA checks for PA and AA courses and intend to complete these before regulation begins.


Currently, PAs currently must pass the Royal College of Physicians’ (RCP) PA national exam (PANE) to gain entry to the Faculty of Physician Associates’ (FPA’s) managed voluntary register. The is no current equivalent for AAs.

The RCP will continue to run the PANE after regulation begins, however the GMC are working to develop a replacement assessment. This will be called the PA registration assessment and will be used from 2025.

The GMC are also working with the Royal College of Anaesthetists and others to develop an AA registration assessment (AARA). AA courses will adopt the new framework earlier with the aim to have assessment in place for those who graduate in 2024/25.

Both assessments will have two parts: a written knowledge test and an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE).

Ethical and Professional Standards

Once registered with the GMC, PAs and AAs will need to follow the standards set out in GMC guidance.

Fitness to Practise

When regulation starts, PAs will need to follow professional guidance that sets out the principles of good practice. When a concern is raised, as with doctors, the GMC may opt to investigate.

More detailed information about current and future regulation can be found on the GMC website: PA and AA regulation

The agile way SARD work ensures that we are able to adapt our products to new developments as they emerge. We will be keeping abreast of the latest guidance for PAs and AAs and tailoring our software accordingly.

If you wish to discuss our PA revalidation system in more detail, please contact me on 07840 454821 or by email