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Daemen College has received approval from the state for a four-year physician assistant program to begin this June for qualified applicants, college officials announced.

"I could not be more pleased with the actions of the state Board of Regents and the state Education Department," said College President Robert S. Marshall.

"In approving the Daemen proposal, they will enable us to add skilled providers of primary health care -- physician assistants -- where they are needed . . ."

The program, which has been in the planning stages for three years, will be directed by Paul F. Jacques, former director of the physician assistant program at Touro College in New York City.

Dr. Nelson Torre, chief of medicine at Sisters Hospital, will serve as medical director. Although the program's primary affiliation will be with Sisters, the college has an agreement with Lockport Memorial Hospital as well.

Applications are being accepted now for all phases of the three-pronged program -- to include a two-year, pre-professional phase followed by a year of concentration on clinical science courses and a year of supervised clinical courses or clerkships.

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