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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

Accuracy of skin cancer diagnosis by physician assistants compared with dermatologists in a large health care system.

Anderson AM, Matsumoto M, Saul MI, et al. JAMA dermatology. 2018;154:569-573.

Diagnostic errors among physician extenders are understudied, especially in subspecialty settings. In this study, physician assistants working in dermatology clinics performed more biopsies and diagnosed fewer skin cancers and melanoma than board-certified dermatologists. The authors were unable to assess how often either clinician type missed diagnoses of skin cancer.