The Washington Physician Health Program
The Washington Physician Health Program (WPHP) provides early intervention, assessment, treatment referral, and post-treatment monitoring for health professionals, including PAs, who may not be able to practice safely due to an impairing or potentially impairing health condition. In some cases, support and referral are all that are needed to put concerns to rest. In others, a more serious illness is identified that requires further diagnostic evaluation, treatment, and monitoring to support sustained illness remission, safe practice, and WPHP advocacy efforts on behalf of the participant.
2022 Physician Assistant Endowed Scholarship Fund

***Deadline for Submission is Monday, December 12, 2022

Attention Washington State PA Program Attendees:

WAPA invites you to complete an application for the Physician Assistant Endowed Scholarship Fund.

Scholarship Guidelines:

  1. The scholarship will be awarded on a preferential, but not mandatory, basis to current or past employees of Group Health Cooperative and Group Health Physicians (now KPWA and Washington Permanente Medical Group) for the education and training of physician assistants in Washington state.
  2. Attending an accredited Washington State PA program.
  3. Certification from the Program that the applicant is enrolled and in good academic standing. Please have attached reference form completed by the program director or a faculty advisor.
  4. WAPA Member in good standing, preferred.
  5. One or two-page narrative addressing the issues: tell us an interesting fact about yourself and why you chose the PA profession, what has been your involvement in the community, how do you plan to be involved with WAPA in the future, and how will this scholarship benefit you
  6. Deadline for submission is Monday, December 12, 2022. Submission must be emailed by midnight on December 12, 2022.

To view the Scholarship Guidelines, please click HERE.

If you have any questions, please email [email protected].

Proclamation 20-32 Ends on October 27th: Waivers Conclude, CME Requirements Reinstated

Proclamation 20-32, along with others, was in place during the COVID-19 public health emergency. It will end this Thursday, October 27, along with waivers and holds on continuing medical education (CME) requirements.

Continuing Medical Education

The Washington Medical Commission (WMC) is exercising enforcement discretion for practitioners regarding the resumption of CME requirements and offering a grace period. Visit our website for a timetable of CME attestation requirements.

Informational Webinar:

The WMC licensed professions listed in Proclamation 20-32 was the focus of previous profession-specific notices. If you did not receive these notices or have questions, please watch our Webinar on Proclamation 20-32 ending.

Suicide Training

Our office has received questions regarding the required suicide training. Visit our website for FAQs regarding Suicide Assessment, Treatment, Management Training or for a specific list of training courses visit the Department of Health model list webpage.

AIDS Training

Previous versions of this email stated that MDs had to start accumulating four hours of AIDS education – that is incorrect and no longer a requirement.


For questions regarding the rescission of waivers and the return of CME, please contact our Licensing Unit at (360) 236-2750 or email. Also look for future a newsletter article on the end of Proclamation 20-32 and share this information in your own network.
PAs Key to Improving Health Care Access

Article Originally by Leah Hampson Yoke, PA-C, MCHS & Published by The Spokesman-Review

Perhaps it has happened to you or a family member or friend. You call to schedule a medical visit to address a significant issue, only to be told that the next available visit is not next week, but actually months away.

When dealing with a medical issue, not being able to receive timely treatment can have serious and often life-altering consequences. Whether a patient is seeking a routine appointment or in need of critical emergency care, assurance that a community health care system can provide the diagnosis and treatment for their situation in a reasonable time frame is imperative.

To ensure that every patient has access to and receives the high-quality care that they need when they need it, it’s essential that our existing health care workforce can practice to the full extent of their education, training and experience. Physician assistants, also known as PAs, are part of this medical team that must be used fully in order to meet the demands of today’s modern health care needs.

Our health care system is facing a “perfect storm.” Demand for medical providers is outpacing supply. More than 96 million Americans lack adequate access to primary care and more than 155 million Americans lack access to mental health care. On top of those stagger numbers, by 2026 our nation is projected to face a shortage of up to 3.2 million health care workers. Combined with a growing aging population, significant percentages of the U.S. population experiencing chronic diseases like obesity (42% of adults aged 20 and over) and diabetes (more than 37 million Americans), and the lingering effects of COVID-19, we have reached a tipping point.

America’s more than 159,000 PAs are licensed clinicians who practice medicine in every specialty and setting and in every state. In Washington state alone, there are over 3,500 licensed PAs – each a trusted, rigorously educated and trained health care professional. PAs are dedicated to expanding access to care and transforming community health and wellness through patient-centered, team-based medical practice in a multitude of specialties and practice settings.

A 2022 study from the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) found more than 66% of patients received care provided by a PA, demonstrating that the demand for PAs has never been higher. With more than 500 million annual patient visits, PAs are a crucial part of the solution to today’s workforce shortages which are crippling health care, and they are critical to ensuring patients have access to quality health care when and where they need it. With a projected 31% increase in PA employment between 2020 and 2030, it is evident that the growth of this profession has an essential role in health care sustainability.

Today’s health care challenges require modern solutions and PAs are at the forefront of this. Continued modernization of practice law will allow our patients to receive timely access to high-quality care. So, the next time you call for a medical visit for a health issue, you won’t have to wait for months. Instead, you can be seen by a PA.

Leah Hampson Yoke, PA-C, MCHS, is the chief PA for UW Medicine and is a practicing infectious disease PA and clinical faculty member at the University of Washington School of Medicine and Fred Hutch Cancer Center in Seattle.

Inslee Announces Pending Rescission of Proclamation 20-32: Waivers Ending, and CME Requirements Being Reinstated

Article from Washington Medical Commission

On July 29, 2022, Governor Inslee announced his intent to rescind 12 Proclamations, including Proclamation 20-32, which have been in place during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

When these 12 healthcare-related emergency orders terminate this fall, approximately 87% of all COVID emergency proclamations will have ended.

To ensure that allopathic physicians (MDs) and physician assistants (PAs) have ample time to resume pre-COVID licensing and regulatory requirements Proclamation 20-32’s rescission will become effective on October 27, 2022.

Continuing Medical Education

Proclamation 20-32 has suspended sections of the Washington Administrative Code (chapter 246-919 WAC for MDs and chapter 246-918 WAC for PAs) continuing medical education (CME) requirements. However, with the impending rescission of Proclamation 20-32, practitioner CME requirements will resume this fall.

In conjunction with the Department of Health and other medical professions, the Washington Medical Commission (WMC) will exercise enforcement discretion for MDs and PAs regarding the resumption of CME requirements. WMC will be instating a grace period for MDs and PAs to complete their CME requirements.

CME Attestation Due Dates for Allopathic Physicians (MDs)

CME Attestation Due Every Four Years
After Proclamation 20-32 (effective from March 26, 2020, through October 26, 2022) is rescinded

If your CME attestation is due on your:

Attestation will now be due on your:

Birthday 2022
(After October 27, 2022)

Birthday 2026
Birthday 2023 
(Before October 27, 2023)
Birthday 2027


CME Attestation Due Dates for Physician Assistants (PAs)

CME Attestation Due Every Two Years
After Proclamation 20-32 (effective from March 26, 2020, through October 26, 2022) is rescinded

If your CME attestation is due on your:

Attestation will now be due on your:

Birthday 2022
(After October 27, 2022)

Birthday 2024

Birthday 2023 
(Before October 27, 2023)

Birthday 2025


If you have questions regarding CME requirements or timelines, visit our CME webpage, or contact our Licensing Unit at (360) 236-2750 or via email.

Waivers by Profession

Each WMC licensed profession listed in Proclamation 20-32 will be the focus of future profession-specific notices with reference points to their respective WAC. To ensure you receive these emails, please subscribe here.

PAs, Limited License holders, Retired Active MD licensees, and Retired Active PA licensees should begin now to prepare for the termination of Proclamation 20-32.

Effective on October 27, 2022, the following pre-COVID requirements will all return:

  • Physician Assistants – physician supervision ratios, and delegation agreement requirements;
  • Limited License holders – will have restrictions regarding geographic locations or specific jobs as described in their appointments;
  • Retired Active MD licensees – will have restrictions that include not receiving compensation for health care services and only practicing in emergent or intermittent circumstances; and
  • Retired Active PA licensees – will have requirements to have a delegation agreement and will be prohibited from receiving compensation for health care services.

If you have questions regarding the rescission of waivers, please contact our Licensing Unit at (360) 236-2750 or email.

Website and Education

Please note that in March of 2020, the WMC posted information regarding Proclamation 20-32 and its associated waivers and suspensions. Those announcements have since been removed to avoid confusion. For reference to those documents, please contact the WMC.

The WMC will hold a webinar regarding changes from the rescission of Proclamation 20-32, including CME attestation requirements, on September 27, 2022. Please subscribe here for registration and date/time information.

Avoid Fraud Claiming to be State Regulators

An ongoing fraud ring has been preying on healthcare practitioners for the last year. The fraudulent behavior includes using the Washington Medical Commission (WMC) phone number, email and web URL; pretending to be Drug Enforcement Administration agents; posing as a Department of Health officials in order to make providers think they are in trouble with regulators or the law and may be in danger of discipline or loss of license. 

These people are researching specific practitioners and attempting to exploit them with personal information. If they are successful, they will move forward with requests for money or information to help them carry out additional scams. Do not be a victim!

Recent Near-Victims of This Scam Were:

  • Sent papers with official looking letterhead from the WMC and U.S. Department of Justice - the letters contained forged signatures of WMC officials and fictional investigative staff
  • Called by someone claiming to be looking into their “over-prescribing of opioids”
  • Told they were under official investigation for drug related charges and that their license was immediately suspended
  • Told not to check our website because that would mean they are guilty
  • Recipients of emails that had wmc.wa.gov in the address

What is NOT a Legitimate Communication?

  • Real regulatory agencies will not ask you for money
  • Real regulatory agencies will not ask you to respond to any action in less than twenty days
  • Real regulatory agencies will not advise against speaking with your own lawyer
  • Real regulatory agencies will not ask you to confirm personal details, passwords, or social security numbers

How Can I Protect Myself from These Attacks?

  1. Never click on links or download suspicious attachments
  2. Don't fall prey to a manufactured urgency. A vital component of this fraud is the urgency of request or demand. If you are contacted by a regulatory agency, you will have a legally protected amount of time to respond
  3. Verify requests before you act. Verify with us that paperwork of any kind has been sent to you by calling: (360) 236-2750
  4. Restrict your personal information online. Scammers leverage personal information from social media accounts or other public forums

Take action! If you have verified that you are being attacked, file a complaint with the State Attorney General or file a complaint with the FBI Internet Crimes Unit and contact your local police department right away!

Please help spread the word about this scam by sharing this information with your friends, family and colleagues. 

The WMC promotes patient safety and enhances the integrity of the medical profession through licensing, rulemaking, discipline, and education. Learn more about the commission at WMC.wa.gov. Follow the WMC on Facebook and Twitter.
2022 Primary Care Review CME-Recordings Available
2022 Lecture Schedule

Thank you for attending the Spring 2022 Conference. We hope you enjoyed your time with us.
Did you miss the meeting? We recorded our sessions and they are worth 26 category I hours of enduring CME credit. 

2022 Spring Recording Registration

This activity is designated for 26 AAPA Category 1 CME credits. PAs should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation. Approval is valid from 6/6/2022 to 6/1/2023. AAPA reference number: CME-206288


Future WAPA CME's

2023 Fall 2023: NEW VENUE! Marcus Whitman Hotel, Walla Walla | October 26-28, 2023

Collaborative Practice Laws in Washington State - What does that look like?

Collaborative Practice Laws in Washington State - What does that look like?

Read about collaborative practice


Update on Physician Assistants: Upcoming PA Law Changes effective July 1, 2021

During the last legislative session, SHB 2378 was passed, authorizing the following changes to Physician Assistant (PA) Laws:

  1. Moves the Delegation Agreements to the practice level; you only need to send a copy to the Washington Medical Commission (WMC). Existing practice agreements submitted before July 1, 2021 do not need to be updated to reflect the changes required in SHB 2387.

    Washington Medical Commission Practice Agreements
  2. The MD/DO to PA ratio is 10:1; if your practice already has a “waiver” for more, you do not need to resubmit.

  3. It removes remote site restrictions; removing duplicate regulatory structures for PAs working with MDs and DOs. It places all PAs under the Medical Commission. There will no longer be a separate licensing section for Osteopathic Physician Assistants. Chapter 18.71A RCW will replace the Osteopathic Physician Assistant license found in chapter 18.57A RCW.

WMC Newsletter on new PA Practice Updates
Senate House Bill 2378
August 26 2021 | Changes in PA practice laws during COVID 19 pandemic under Gov. Inslee