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We welcome articales from both new and expiranced authors on topics that are relevant to the physcian associate profession. 

Author Guidelines

Our Ethos




Medical Education

Our Offering

tPAJ is a peer-reviewed journal that follows a simple and straight forward structure. Typically the core of each edition consists of three clinical papers. A professional issues paper, an opinion piece as well as a student room. These are supplemented by additional clinical content which comprises of a red flags article highlighting important presentations for the practising physician associate as well as an interactive clinical case discussion. Our 'Zebras not Horses' series aims to broader the knowledge base of physician associates to include conditions which fall outside of the competence and curriculum document and are less likely to present frequently in clinical practice. 


Finally, each edition features 'An Appointment With a Physician Associate'. This article showcases the good work of an individual physician associate in the form of an interview. This final type of article is published in an open-access format the intention of this being to build a repository of positive examples of the physician associates role and how this has impacted on health care delivery; strengthening both public and professional understanding of the role.      

This content is presented against a clear editorial as well as a news and events section. The aim of which is to connect members of the profession. Additional feature articles will be included when there is a specific and topical reason to do so. Feature articles dealer with major developments which affect the physician associate profession; examples would be COVID-19 and changes to the regulatory framework that given physician associate practice. These feature articles are also published on an open-access basis.  

In its infancy, the tPAJ is not in a position to reliably publish works of original research and as such articles of this type can not be accepted. This policy will be maintained under review with a view to publishing such articles in the future. Articles that describe innovative services that involve physician associates and practice improvement projects, as well as audits are however most welcome. Well written literature reviews are also welcome providing they hold clear recommendations that are relevant to practice.    

We Are Accessible

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Group Discussion

If you have an idea for a potential article that you think that is relevant to the practice of physician associates in the united kingdom then we would love to hear from you.    

If you are an experienced author, then please feel free to submit an unsolicited manuscript. The process for doing this is detailed later within these guidelines. 

If however, you are less experienced at writing for publication then we are still very keen to hear from you. All that you require is an idea for an article that you would like to develop and the commitment to work hard on preparing the manuscript. We are happy to provide you with advice and guidance on preparing your work for publication and to support you through the process with a view to eventual publication in tPAJ.




As additional support for new authors, we have scheduled a "MedicalEd Classroom" event on Monday 21st of September for those of you who are interested.  Here you will be able to learn more about the process of writing for publication, you will be able to meet members of the editorial team and get a feel for how to go about the process of writing and how to avoid some of the potential pitfalls. We cant wait to meet all of you with ideas to share at the event. 


To attend this event you will need to first register with a free account for our site and book a place using the links below. 




The Wall of Ideas

If you already have a clear idea then please contact us via email at enclosing a brief outline of your article ideas which should include an indication of the section within tPAJ that you would like to see your article appear. This must be accompanied by a clear aim of your article supported by bullet points summarising how you will achieve this and the topics that your article will cover. We will then contact you to discuss your ideas and its suitability for the journal. 


Alternatively, if you are ready to submit your article then you should follow the links below. However, please do ensure that you read all of these guidelines before submission as complying with these maximises your chances of publication.     

As a part of our accessibility agenda at tPAJ we aspire to be a wholely inclusive journal. As such we happily accept submissions from authors who are not physician associates but whos contribution would add value to the journal and the profession. Such articles need to demonstrate the significance of the content to the physician associate profession.   


It is not necessary for authors to practice within the UK. We are equally happy to learn those with experience from other locations where the physician associate/assistant /medical officer roles and the like have been deployed. The language of tPAJ is English.

We are Engaging

Let's be engaging together: 

Writing Style

We use an open style of writing which aims to be both accessible for those who may be new to the topics covered in an article but also holds sufficient depth and authority to be educationally useful and reliable for the more experienced reader. 

Importantly we want to hear your voice to come through in what you are writing.  Dry rhetoric is much less appealing to the reader than content which speaks to them. You must ensure that you remember that you are writing for a professional journal so writing should be in the third person informative, not directly descriptive but also not straying into conversational themes. 

Just as we want to engage the readers in your article we would ask that you engage fully with the literature that supports your arguments. This will enable you to give a clear and authoritative account. Rember its evidence-based medicine not abstract based medicine. 


Being engaging also means that your work sparks interest is easy to read and hold a logical progression from topic to another. Your article should be readable without having to resort to researching meanings or language which is not clear in your work. This requires judgement on your part as to what the reader should understand of the topic and how your work extends this.  

Our editorial policy is to work with tight word counts. This enhances the readability but also enforces discipline in the writer to convey important points without superfluous detail or explanation.  The word counts for each article type are addressed later in this guidance. 

Through your work make good use of paragraphs and we encourage the judicious use of headings. These help to increase the readability of your work by signposting the reader. They also allow you to save on word counts reducing the need for explanatory linking words.  Please outdent major headings, highlighting these in bold. Subheadings should be aligned with the text, Separated by a single line space an in plain text. 

In addition to our guidelines, the Plain English Campaign has some useful resources on their website which you can access from the link below. 

Be You

We are Relervant 

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We believe that relevancy builds upon positive engagement both from within members of our profession and beyond. This includes our relationships with other health professionals and the public at large to whom we are ultimately accountable. To remain relevant we acknowledge our place in the wider health care team and work in partnership with other professionals.

tPAJ is a confident journal who will deal with difficult issues where these are relevant to members of our profession. As such to remain relevant we value the viewpoints of our readers' and will be responsive to these. It is only through listening to views that we can respond to in the most appropriate way to maintain credibility and relevancy. This means that on occasion we will publish articles that deal with real and difficult issues for the profession that are important to our readership. 

We are wholly a professional independent academic journal and we do not align ourselves with any political organisation. We are though supportive of any movement that works to establish equality for people who hold a protected characteristic or who are disadvantaged in some way. This is particularly the case where such an imposed disadvantage leads to health inequalities. We certainly welcome articles that seek to reduce health inequalities.  We do not accept articles that further compound disadvantage, or are discriminatory in some way. Nor will we accept articles from groups or individuals who fail to uphold the value of inclusivity. 


We, do not publish works which portray any professional identity as less or more than another. Underpinning our accessibility agenda is the principle of 'honouring the person before you' and using a system of 'unconditional positive regard' in all circumstances, and these should be reflected in any submitted work where appropriate. 

Article Types 

The articles that we publish can be divided in to: 


  • Editorials

  • News & Events 

  • Clinical 

  • Professional

  • Opinion 

  • In Series 

  • Student Room  

  • Red Flags 

  • Zebras Not Horses 

  • Clinical Case Discussions 

  • An appointment with a PA



Editorials are normally completed by one of our editorial team though on occasions we will invite other notable individuals to contribute to the editorial section. The editorial draws together each of the elements of the current edition to provide a cohesive overview and context to the journal.  


Senior Trans Person

News & Events 

These are short pieces anywhere from 300-750 words. Ther will both provide an update on any important PA news occurring in the month. We can also help to both promote your event free of charge for free events tho we have a sliding scale of advertising rates for paid events which depended upon a number of event factors, please contact us for details. 

We are always pleased to hear about any PA related events that you have organised or attended. We are happy to share the outcomes of your events with the wider PA population. This can be achieved in either one of two ways. Firstly you submitting a short piece which summaries the main aims and conclusion of the event again this should demonstrate a clear link to impact on the wider PA population.


Alternatively, contact us and we can conduct a short interview with you and construct the piece from that.  Finally, soundbites either from yourself or participants at an event simply recorded on your smartphone and emailed to and we will include this if suitable in the monthly podcast summary. 


Woman Getting Interviewed
Physiotherapists Training

The Professional PA 

Clinical Articles

Clinical articles make up the core of the journal and are always liked to CPD activities. Topics for clinical articles can be selected from any area of clinical medicine. The publishing schedule will seek to ensure that there is a balance of articles that reflect the diverse areas in which physician associates work. It will be helpful to assess the topics that have recently been covered in the journal to avoid delays in publishing your work. 


Each article should be 2000-2500 words in length article can extend to 3000 words with the prior agreement if this fits the topic. All clinical articles should include a stand forth of 100-150 words. This is separate to the introduction and serves to grab the attention of the reader making clear why the article is needed. This is then followed by a standard introduction. main body and conclusions. Each article should include 5-6 bullet points which summarise the key learning points of the article.  There should be 10-15 single best of five questions the answers to which must have been covered in the article. Theses will be used to generate a CPD certificate for those achieving a mark of 70%. 

It is important that that clinical are appropriately referenced using the Harvard system. More about referencing is included below. 


The professional issues section deals with non-clinical articles which have an impact on the role of physician associates. Issues surrounding, prescribing, consent, scope of practice, do not attempt resuscitation decisions are such examples.

Articles in this section are typically 2000 to 2500 words and consist of a stand forth, introduction, main body, and conclusion. In addition, the article should be accompanied by 10 to 15 single best of five questions that readers can utilise to demonstrate engagement with the article and gain a CPD Certificate.

Articles here may explain good practise in relation to a particular professional issue or challenge current thinking by introducing a new concept or paradigm within the professional practise of physician associates.

Friendly Young Doctor

A Physician Associates Opinion

In this section we invite individual physician associates, other professionals, and service users to provide their opinion on a particular topic which has relevance to the physician associate profession. Essentially this is our open mic section. Typically, opinion pieces are 750 to 1000 words and should layout your opinion on a particular matter in a clear and logical manner. As these articles are non-clinical or professional they need not be referenced, though if you do you refer to a specific published document or website the reference for these should be included. Likewise, if you are referencing a particular public body then a reference to this body which provides the reader with further opportunity to explore your opinion should be included. As long as you adhere to our ethos then the choice is really yours as to what to include in this section. 


In Series 

In series articles deal with topics which are too large to address in a single article. the content may comprise of either clinical or non-clinical subject material. And the number of articles in the series should generally range from 3 to 10. Short series may focus on An individual area of practise such as the case in the inaugural issues which provides an in depth view of the pharmacology of drugs used to treat infections. Longer series should deal with a more general topic such as pharmacology as a whole.


Series may be produced by a single author or a group of authors who each contribute an individual article. writing for a series is a significant undertaking and it's probably best suited to those who have prior experience in publishing work; they said however if you are particularly motivated to write a series we would certainly be glad to hear from you; we are keen to offer as much support as possible to realise your ideas. before starting work on a series it's sensible to plan the articles on the objectives of each article clearly and in writing and then email the editor to arrange a discussion about your series and the suitability of it for tPAJ.


The word count of series articles is variable depending on both the length and subject of the series and are best discussed with the author.


Image by Steve Johnson
Image by Martino Pietropoli

Student Room

This section deals with topics which are directly relevant for student physician associates and we certainly welcome and encourage articles from students themselves. such articles may be produced by an individual or a collaboration of students from one or more institutions. The student room accepts a range of different Articles in length the key feature being that articles have direct relevance for physician associate students. Example articles may include reflections on learning experience, issues affecting the ability to progress effectively, examples of good teaching practise, As well as study tips and advice.


Red flags

The red flag series are short articles of up to 750 words that deal with important presentations that should not be missed and require a degree of clinical action to safeguard the patients’ health.


Articles should described the clinical finding which is considered to be a red flag, detail the potential diagnosis which is associated with the red flags, describe the immediate management that should be instigated by a physician associate in this particular context, and summarise with three to five key learning points from the article.


Five single best five questions should be included with this article type so that readers can demonstrate their understanding of the article. The articles content should be fully referenced.


Students with iPad
Image by ‏🌸🙌 فی عین الله

Zebras Not Horses

Zebra Couple

This section of the physician associate journal deals with conditions which are not commonly encountered within clinical practise. The title is a play on the classic saying when you hear hoofbeats think horses not zebras - implying the common things are common, and these should be the first things that a clinician thinks of when encountering such a presentation. However uncommon conditions do present and are often complicated by delay in diagnosis, with potentially negative outcomes for the patient involved.

Our zebra's not horses series turns this thinking slightly on its head and broadens The thinking of physician associates to include conditions which are less commonly observed though are recognised clinical findings. articles for this section should be 750 words I'm provide a concise summary of the condition along with appropriate management and referral options. These articles should be fully referenced.    


A PA Apointment

A PA Appointment section serves to showcase the good work of individual physician associates. These articles take the form of a short interview with an individual physician associate so that our readers can learn more about your role. These articles are also distributed on an Open Access basis to ensure a positive PA presence on the Internet with examples of good practise highlighted. If you feel that you have an interesting role within the physician associate profession then we would really love to hear from you so that we could arrange an interview and feature you within this section.


Interviews typically take 30 minutes to complete and explore Your role is a PA and a little bit about yourself to promote networking amongst the profession. If you're a user of social media then we are also happy too include your details such as Twitter handles so that readers can connect with you further promoting a sense of cohesion amongst profession.

Once the interviews completed one of our editorial team will compile the article and forward it to you for approval before it is published. if there is anything contained within the article that you are not completely happy with you have complete editorial rights to change this or to withdraw your permission for publication prior to the article being published.


To supplement the article we would also like to include and audio recording of the edited interview in the monthly podcast so that listeners can get to know members of the PA profession, again your concern will be sought for this and should you not wish to participate in this component you will not be disadvantaged in anyway.


3D Scans
old formats to digital

We are Engaging in Formatting your work

As an online Journal the physician associate Journal makes full use of the opportunity service affords us. As such we encourage rich content within submissions. These included videos audio recordings tables I'm photographs and diagrams. Initially you should embed all of your images within the text Nope your article an appropriate location.


All additional resource is should be numbered sequentially e.g. Figure 1 figure 2 table one etc. These should all have reference made to them within the text. You can upload any additional audio or video files separately.


All articles should be double spaced with a clear and descriptive title. Calibri size 12 is our preferred font. Any Microsoft word or Google Docs format is acceptable.   


Referencing  your work 

it is important that all clinical professional red flag, zebras not horses and in theories articles are fully referenced. At the physicians associate Journal we have adopted the Harvard style of referencing also known as the author date system.

Referencing in the text: for works of single authors simply insert the authors name and date within the text placing this in brackets if the authors name is not directly a part of the sentence. For works with two authors both authors names should be cited within the text alongside the date. For works with more than two authors the first authors name should be cited along with et al, followed by the date.


Paying attention to referencing is important as it demonstrates the true authority of an article. Poor referencing technique is a common reason why Journal articles are not accepted. It is important therefore that you pay attention to this component your work when submitting articles to the Physician associates Journal. incorrectly referenced work can be embarrassing for the author and the Journal and it is your responsibility to ensure that all references are cited accurately and correctly. Please also make efforts to ensure that references are as up to date as possible, Though we recognise that some classic works may have references which are dated from some time ago. we do not offer a guideline on how recent a particular reference should be for inclusion as this is context dependent.


The reference list: reference list should be provided an alphabetical order and include all references which are cited in the text with no additional references included. for online only articles a date of access should also be included as well as the date of publication.


Judge with a Book

Veracity & Integrity 

Colorful Transparent Glass

To ensure sustained confidence in the Journal the physician associate Journal uses plagiarism software to ensure that no inadvertent errors of referencing have been made.  You have responsibility to ensure that you have the right to publish the desired work and that All authors cited have agreed to be included in the publication. Prior to the publication of your article we will require you to complete a consent form signed by all contributors to the article.

Any images that are used must be in your ownership and you have appropriate permissions in place to allow for publication of this work. Again, we will ask you to sign a Copyright form prior to the publication of your article in which you declare this to be the case. Any images that include service users or images of service users in part which may not be identifiable still require explicit consent from the service user for publication offer such an image of themselves. Where images used for publication form part of a patients clinical record then additional permissions will also likely be required from you're employing organisation and you should verify this with your employee organisation before approaching any service users for permission to include any images in publication.

We ask all authors to sign a publication agreement prior to publication. An important part of this is the declaration of interests. It is important that we are transparent as a Journal about any conflict of interests that an author may have. This would include sponsorship from a organisation or any such other conflict which may embarrass the author or the Journal if later discovered.


Submitting your work 

When you are ready to submit your work simply complete the form below and your over the next hurdel in your publication jorney. 


Ready To Submit Your Article 

When you are ready to submit your work for review please complete this short form and we will get back to you as soon as we can. 
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What type of artical are you submitting?
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Thanks for submitting! You will shortly recive an email confirming your submission. We look forward to working together 

Reviewing Proposal

The Review Process

Following the submission of your obstacles it will be reviewed by our editor to assess its fit for the Journal of physician associates. you work will also be passed too plagiarism detection software at this stage. If your article demonstrates that it fits with our author guidelines it will be sent for blind review.


Once the editor received the reviews feedback we will contact you with our decision about your article. We understand that publishing work can be a greatly rewarding process and we aim to involve you in this process at every stage. The review process is rigorous and can take 8 to 10 weeks before you will receive a decision however in the majority of cases we aim to deliver a decision much sooner than this. Based upon the reviewers feedback you receive one of three decisions:


  • Accept without revisions

  • Accept with revisions

  • Not currently suitable


The review process is meant to be a supportive process and aims to get your article to be the best that it can be. The most likely decision the you will receive is except with revisions. Where based upon the editor and reviewers’ feedback we will ask you to make certain changes to your article which will enhance it for the readership. We understand that it can be quite disheartening to receive feedback to change an article that you have spent many hours in preparing now our intention in giving this feedback is the honour your article and make sure it is received in the best possible way. In pursuance of this we ask that you receive the feedback in good spirits and recognise that it has been provided to help you develop your work to a high standard. We are an accessible and inclusive Journal and all reviews comments are constructive and are provided in such a way that will help you rather than dishearten you.

Once you have returned your article with any required changes, we will schedule it for publication providing that any requested changes have been made to an acceptable standard. It is highly likely that we will ask you for a deadline for any changes that you are making to an article to ensure that we can produce a structured publishing timetable for the Journal. Deadlines are important to us in ensuring that we are able to publish in the Journal in a timely manner. If you are not able to meet a deadline that you have specified then please do email the editor and inform them of this as it is better to do this as soon as possible rather than wait till the deadline to come and go before contacting us.

If your article is not accepted for publication based upon review will provide you feedback and how you may wish to develop the article, I'm highlight the main reasons why your article have not been selected for publication at this time. if you wish to discuss any article ideas before starting writing then we are happy to hold these discussions with you please email the editor with any ideas that you may have.


The Final Cut 

Copyright Issues  

Once we have received your final manuscript, we will process it for publication. This includes any formatting and the inclusion of any images as well as linking any references to their online sources. Once this process has been completed, we will send you a private link pre-publication for you to have a final review of the work before it is eventually published. Again, deadlines are important here and ensuring that any work we propose to include in a specific addition of the physician associate Journal can be fulfilled.


Copyright is important which is why this deserves a special section on its own. We have already asserted that It is necessary for you to own the Copyright for any material that you wish to publish in the physician associate Journal.


As part of the publication process we will ask you to complete the publication agreement. Part of this confirms your ownership of copyrights for the material and also grants the physician associate Journal ownership of the copyright for your material which enables us to publish this on your behalf. This agreement allows us to publish your article in whole or in parts in a manner which promotes the success of the Journal. You will still be able to reproduce your work as you wish and included in any organisational repository’s that you made belong to. We ask that you do not include your work in any organisational repository’s for three months following publication.

You may only submit your work to one Journal for consideration at a time. We are not able to reproduce works which have been published elsewhere or are in consideration for publication at another Journal under any circumstances.



Your Published 

Ready to Get Published

The final stage is when your article appears in the Journal. When this occurs, we will send you a CPD certificate as well as applying and author badge to you within the physician associate Journal online community. You will want to promote your Journal article in as many ways as