Physician Associate Ambassadors (PAAs)

Health Education England Kent Surrey and Sussex have appointed two Physician Associate [PA] Ambassadors to assist recruitment and integration of PAs into multi-professional primary and secondary care teams.
Michelle Chapman

Michelle Chapman, PA-R

HEE Physician Associate Ambassador working across Kent, Surrey and Sussex

With a focus on secondary care and mental health.

Michelle graduated from St. Georges, University of London’s PA programme in 2014 and initially began working within elderly care medicine at Surrey and Sussex Healthcare Trust. In 2016, Michelle transferred specialties to acute medicine.
Michelle was appointed the substantive Lead PA for the KSS School of PAs in February 2018.

In 2016, Michelle was appointed to the Faculty of Physician Associates [FPA] national board and is responsible for post registration education, primarily the organisation of the FPA annual CPD conference. In August 2019, Michelle was elected as the Vice President of the FPA, appointed for a three-year term.

Michelle’s role as a PA Ambassador, alongside her work with the KSS School of PAs and the FPA, provides a fantastic opportunity for collaboration and to promote the PA role widely. Her experience within secondary care and working with the KSS School, Michelle is able to offer advice and encourage the integration of PAs into the wider workforce helping organisations utilise the role to its full potential.

Sarah Vigor

Sarah Vigor, PA-R

HEE Physician Associate Ambassador working across Kent, Surrey and Sussex

With a focus on primary care.

Sarah graduated from the St. George’s PA programme in 2010 as part of the first cohort of Physician Assistants (as they were then called) to qualify in the UK. Since that time, Sarah has been involved in many aspects of the profession including with the UK Association of Physician Associates (UKAPA – the predecessor of the Faculty of PAs) as Director for Legislation and Director of Communications. Sarah was also Secretary for the Managed Voluntary Register during her time on the UKAPA Board and has been involved in teaching PA students at St. George’s. Sarah has examined OSCEs at several PA programmes and is also a PA National OSCE examiner.

Following qualification Sarah worked in Trauma and Orthopaedics at St. George’s hospital and worked hard to enable integration of the PA role into the trust, leading on PA development there at the time.

Sarah then moved to work in Acute Medicine at Surrey and Sussex NHS Healthcare Trust East in 2013 where she was later appointed as Lead PA in 2018. Sarah also represented the role nationally as the PA Representative on the Society of Acute Medicine’s council, 2017-2019.

In May 2020, Sarah embarked on a new role within primary care at West Kent Health Federation based in Tunbridge Wells. She brings much clinical and leadership experience to primary care and her understanding of the utilisation and development of PAs to the Ambassador role and is excited to be involved with the ambassador programme to help develop workforce strategies across the region and support students and working PAs.

Key Areas of focus:

  • Working with health organisations to create employment opportunities for PAs and advise on supervision, induction, training and student placements
  • Help with training programmes for PAs
  • Supporting PAs across the region
  • Developing collaborative opportunities e.g: creation of combined roles across primary/secondary care interesting: training roles for PAs

Please contact Michelle and Sarah directly if you would like to understand more about the PA profession.