BHC Inspired Me to Become A Physician Assistant

by | Sep 26, 2021 | BHC News, Fibromyalgia, ME/CFS

Carissa Ellis full body

Incredible people have spent time at BHC as interns, pre-med students, and clinical research coordinators as a waypoint in their educational journeys. As a part of our mission, we hire and train upcoming researchers and medical professionals to help be a product of change in the scientific and medical fields surrounding these illnesses. Carissa reflects on her time at BHC. Carissa Ellis headshot

The time I spent at Bateman Horne Center (BHC) in 2015-17 played a significant role in where I am today. It was during this time that I learned what a Physician Assistant (PA) is and decided it was the career for me. Due to this introduction, I am now a second-year PA student at Pacific University in Oregon. Throughout school and as I begin seeing patients, I am constantly drawing on experiences I had at BHC to help me become the best provider I can be.

While there I learned to write medical notes and documents as Dr. Bateman’s medical assistant and scribe. Working as a medical assistant provided amazing opportunities to meet our patients, hear their stories, and help patients make the most of their circumstances. I also learned how private clinics function, the inner workings of transitioning into a non-profit with rebranding and moving, about fundraising efforts, and even about event planning.

The most formative experience I had was helping to develop educational classes that could reach more people than we could individually reach in the clinic. With these classes, we could start to make a difference for more people and truly help participants navigate the health system. Through this process, I learned about disease processes and non-pharmacological ways to manage ME/CFS and FM. Additionally, I learned how to help participants track their complicated medical histories, communicate more effectively with providers, and get the most out of their medical interactions. This background has allowed me to connect more successfully with my patients today and has helped me be significantly more comfortable working with patients who have difficult to treat medical conditions.

Our work with Carissa and others like her is made possible by donations. Help us continue this vital work and donate to BHC.

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