2012 PA of the Year

Frankie Winegardner - Iowa PA of the year 2012

Frankie Winegardner is an outstanding PA who has been a long time pioneer of the profession in many medical settings. Among the many aspects of her life she has served most notably as a PA medical practitioner, educator, leader, writer and effective advocate for patients and PAs. Frankie is a 1978 graduate of the University of Iowa PA program who practices Integrative Medicine at her clinic in Clear Lake, Iowa.

 Always willing to help she is an exceptional leader who was instrumental in virtually all of the Iowa PA Society legislative successes in Iowa. These advancements include increasing the number of PAs a physician may supervise at one time from 2 to 5, clarifying PA authority to order and perform respiratory therapy, allowing PAs to form and join professional corporations and prescribing schedule II stimulants (Ritalin, amphetamines). Frankie persuaded her state representative and neighboring state senator, key legislators, to guide these bills through the legislature. Additionally, Frankie was a leader in the successful IPAS efforts to pass third party reimbursement, prescribing and the PA regulatory board.

Frankie has been singularly effective in educating legislators about PAs, and physicians about PA training and skills. Each time of the many times Frankie was asked she successfully organized Mason City area PAs to work on legislative issues. Frankie has served the PA profession in many capacities including IPAS president, chair of the Iowa PA regulatory board, AAPA House of Delegates representative for Iowa, IPAS newsletter editor and columnist for 7 years, preceptor for PA student and PA presenter on a variety of medical topics. Frankie has worked as a PA in many different settings from surgery to remote sites, to radiation oncology, to setting up her own clinic to care for patients with challenging medical problems. And she publishes her own quarterly wellness medical newsletter.

Among many her many educational projects Frankie has served as a teacher of ACLS, smoking cessation and Complementary and Alternative Medicine varying from healing touch to hypnosis. These skills are especially helpful for her difficult to manage patients. To develop these abilities she completed the University of Arizona fellowship in Integrative Medicine. Frankie is also a published author and serves as a volunteer at the Mason City free clinic.

For her crucial role in the education of legislators alone Frankie richly deserves recognition as Iowa's PA of the year. Throughout her career she has demonstrated very well the variety and flexibility a PA can offer a practice.  And she has done it all extremely well reflecting most favorably on our PA profession. Most importantly, she has helped innumerable patients have a better life.