History & Accomplishments/ Past Presidents

The Connecticut Academy of Physician Assistants (ConnAPA) is part of a national network of constituent chapters devoted to representing and promoting the interests of PAs. ConnAPA has had a long and productive relationship with the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) and ConnAPA members regularly serve on AAPA committees and boards. Elected representatives of ConnAPA participate in the AAPA House of Delegates helping to develop national policies and procedures.

ConnAPA is a growing organization that, in addition to the efforts of its dedicated leadership and committee members, employs professional management to handle the day-to-day business of the Academy and assist in the delivery of membership services. ConnAPA members enjoy numerous opportunities for professional development and involvement, as well as opportunities to meet and network with their peers (ex. CME dinners at no charge to members).

ConnAPA members founded the Connecticut Physician Assistants Foundation (ConnPAF), a charitable organization operated exclusively for educational and research purposes. The Foundation conducts research on topics relevant to PAs and awards scholarships to Connecticut residents enrolled full-time in accredited PA programs anywhere in the United States.

As with any professional society, the membership is its strength. ConnAPA’s members are committed to their profession and to improved access to cost effective, quality health care.

Some Major Accomplishments of ConnAPA Affecting
PAs Ability to Practice in CT

1990 – Prescriptive Privileges Bill passed, allowing CT PAs to write prescriptions for Schedules.
1992 – ConnAPA lobbied for and obtained funding to allow the Health Department to hire the personnel needed to begin licensure.† Registration procedures are implemented.
1993 – The first physician assistant is licensed in Connecticut.† ConnAPA lobbied for and received an extension of the deadline for licensure under the grandfathering provision of the law.
1994 – PAs can prescribe physical and respiratory therapy.
1994 – The first PA is appointed to the Board of Medical Examiners.
1995 – State law mandates third party payment for PA services.
1996 – PAs may make death pronouncements.
1996 – ConnAPA is successful in expanding the PA-to-supervising physician ratio.
1997 – PA-to-supervising physician ratio increased from 2:1 to 6:1.
2000 – PAs may write for Schedule II and III drugs for outpatient care under certain circumstances.
2000 – PAs are now allowed to sit on medical advisory panels formed by the Board of Medical Examiners.
2003 – PAs may become shareholders in their supervising physicianís corporation.
2005 – Expansion of PA supervision requirements.
2006 – Clarification of PA supervision requirements, essential to practicing in CT.
2007 – ConnAPA becomes founding member of Healthcare Assistance Intervention Assistance Network (HAVEN)
2007 – Eliminated registration requirements with Department of Public Health for supervising physicians and alternate supervising physicians.
2007 – Legislation passed giving PAs ìtitle protection.
2007 – Successfully fought potential legislation that would have allowed foreign medical grads (FMGs) to become PAs.
2008 – Scope of practice expanded to include prescribing and approving the use of durable medical equipment and certifying patientsí disabilities to obtain handicap permits.
2009 – ConnAPA becomes member of Primary Care Coalition of Connecticut.
2009 – Successfully fought potential legislation that would have excluded PAs from neonatal and pediatric specialty care transport.
2009 – PAs are granted permission to use fluoroscopy for guidance of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.
2010 – Two PAs confirmed as SustiNet workgroup members, serving on the Health Care Quality & Provider Advisory Committee and the Medical Home Advisory Committee.
2010 – PAs are given the authority to certify when a student athlete is ready to return to full, unrestricted team activities following a concussion.
2010 – ConnAPA’s inaugural Job Fair was held.
2011 – Legislation passed requiring registered nurses to implement written orders made by PAs, thus clarifying some confusion in certain healthcare venues as to the reporting lines of authority between various professions.
2011 – Successfully fought potential legislation that would have restructured the composition of the CT Medical Examining Board, which would have removed both the PA member as well as a physician member who supervises a PA.
2011 – DSS issued a decision to enroll PAs as standalone providers in the Medicaid program.
2011 – CSMS/ConnAPA Joint Paper to endorse AMA guidelines for Physician/PA practice.
2011 – Fluoroscopy examination deadline extended from October 1, 2011 to July 1, 2012.
2012 – ConnAPA’s COC 25th anniversary. Fluoroscopy examination extended until September 1, 2012.
Removal from statute of need for personal meetings with supervising physician as well as the need for notation of certain scripts (see ConnAPA and the Law for further details)
2013 –Participated in the “medical spa” regulation process, to ensure that PAs could continue to practice in these settings.
Again opposed and offered testimony that would have removed a PA and a physician who supervises a PA from the Medical Examining Board.
2014-Requirement for physician name to be printed on all prescriptions and orders is eliminated.
PAs were inserted in various statutes to reaffirm PA authority in several areas.
Medical Spa bill was passed ensuring that PAs could continue to practice in their current settings.
Successful in defeating medical malpractice legislation that would weaken the standards and make it easier for someone to file suit.
2015-PAs were included into telemedicine legislation so that the profession can provide this service as it continues to grow and advance
ConnAPA provided testimony encouraging that the definition of surgery be discussed and determined through a workgroup process.
Successfully defeated a Senate bill that would expand someone’s ability to sue for malpractice on them as a child to 8 years once they turn 18.
2016-17 – Participated in the Department of Public Health scope review process regarding a definition of “surgery” to ensure that PA interests were appropriately represented
2018 Successfully worked to remove the cap on the number of PAs that can be supervised by a physician

2019  Changed the wording to describe PAs are not in a “dependent” relationship with physicians and instead are in a “collaborative” relationship – Public Act 19-144

(* indicates deceased)

1975 Charles Park
1976 Charles Park
1977 Elaine Grant
1978 John Dailinger
1979 Burdeen Camp
1980 J. Jeffrey Heinrich*
1981 Bruce Fichandler
1982 Thomas Clayton
1983 Carol Ekonomides
1984 William Kohlhepp
1985 Salvatore Baresee
1986 Robert Young
1987 Shepard Stone
1988 Robert Howell
1989 Edward Hobday
1990 Jack Pike
1991 William Kohlhepp
1992 Dan Mussen
1993 Joseph Varano*
1994 Frank Martin
1995 Cynthia Booth Lord
1996 Mary Warner
1997 Joseph Varano*
1998 Nancy Najarian
1999 Audrey Douglas
2000 Judy Nunes
2001 Steven Fries
2002 Maureen Robert
2003 Joseph Varano*
2004 Ronald Podojil
2005 C. Drew Morton*
2006 Jennifer Madonnia-Barr
2007 Tricia Marriott
2008 Tricia Marriott/
Jeannine Sico
2009 Jeanine Sico
2010 Justin Champagne
2011 Danielle Tabaka
2012 Sarah Fountain Clark
2013-2015 Andrew Turczak
2015-2017 Jason Prevelige
2017-2018 Deanna Zimkus
2018-2019 Michael Devanney
2019-2021 Mark Turczak