A Day In The Life Of… Samantha Hughes, Lead Physician Associate, Care Collaborative

“My job is Lead Physician Associate (PA) for Care Collaborative PCN as well as Kent Surrey and Sussex GP PA Programme Director.

The clinical side of my role involves holding clinics alongside GPs, seeing a mix of acute, on-the-day patients as well as those presenting with more chronic conditions. I take a history and examine the patient to come up with a management plan for their issues. I have been a PA in Primary Care for nearly three years now, before that I was in Geriatrics for eight years in Secondary Care.

My average day will involve a morning clinic of acute and chronic presentations, with patients being allocated from our Triage Team. At the end of the clinic, I carry out an older adult proactive review where I get to spend longer with patients to ensure their needs are being met and undertake anticipatory care conversations so we can help plan future care.
The middle of the day is taken up with in-house teaching and case discussions, followed by an afternoon clinic comprising more acute and chronic patients as well as supervising new PAs with their clinic.

Once a week I do a care home ward round for a large care home where a list of issues are tackled and complex medical and social issues addressed. One day a week I run the KSS Preceptorship Teaching Programme for PAs new to Primary Care, ensuring their important first year is supported with CPD and mentoring.

I enjoy the variety in my role and the balance of clinical and non-clinical work. I particularly enjoy my care home and proactive reviews of our older adult patients where I can plan care holistically and enable patients to express their future care wishes. This side of medicine can be very complex and involve lots of social issues that I enjoy untangling and providing solutions for.

Looking ahead, I would like to continue to expand on my work with our older adults and try to further explore how we provide proactive care for them before they become unwell. I would like to continue to see my PA Team grow in house and also help facilitate the wider progression of PAs locally in Surrey Heartlands.”