Joshua Merson, Distinguished Teaching Assistant Professor within the Department of Physician Assistant Studies, in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, joined the MGH Institute in April 2015. Professor Merson earned his BS in Health Science from Boston University, his M.S. in Physician Assistant Studies from the University of New England, and M.S. in Health Professions Education from MGH Institute of Health Professions. He has also received his certificate of added qualification in emergency medicine from the NCCPA and National Healthcare Disaster Certification through the American Nurses Association.

As one of the core founding faculty of the PA Program, Professor Merson has been instrumental in the establishment of the program curriculum design and responsible for educational innovation in medical simulation, laboratory design, and OSCE practical exams/assessment. He also teaches a variety of courses at MGH Institute of Health Professions including topics in Emergency Medicine, Cardiology, and Dermatology.

Professor Merson currently practices in Internal Medicine at Boston Healthcare for the Homeless and serves as a Disaster Medical Assistant Team member within the Department of Health and Human Services. Additionally, he is the current Legislative Chair of the Massachusetts Association of PAs, the only professional group representing the Physician Assistant profession in Massachusetts.

  • BS, Health Science, Boston University, Boston, MA
  • MS Physician Assistant Studies, University of New England, Portland, ME
  • MS-HPEd, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA


Bertrand, V, Merson, J. (2022, September). Inferior vena cava syndrome: A clinical case study and review of congenital anomalies. SGIM New England, Boston, MA.

Warner, M, Poulin, J, Merson, J. (2022, September). An analysis of the development of Charcot arthropathy in a 39-year-old male with chronic hepatitis C and alcohol use disorder without a history of diabetes. SGIM New England, Boston, MA.

McKean, M, Clapp, M, Martincheck, M, Merson, JR. (2021, October). Active learning in the virtual world. ASAHP Annual Conference, Virtual.

Cleveland, H, Durkin J, Mac, PD, Butler, M, Churchill, A, Merson, JR. (2020, August). Putting it into practice: volunteering at a student-faculty collaborative clinic enhances the confidence of the physician assistant student. Nexus Summit 2020 Annual Meeting, Virtual.

Romano, T, Rafiti, A, Qatarneh, N, Adelman, D, Wright, L, Cleveland, H, Merson, JR. (2020, August). Student-run medical simulation lab: A pilot program. Nexus Summit 2020 Annual Meeting, Virtual

Murphy, DC, Merson, JR. 2022. Pilonidal disease. Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, 35 (10) 54-55.

Merson, J, Shehu, M, 2021. Syphilis. AAPA: Quick recertification series. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.

Merson, J, Murphy, D, 2021. Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. AAPA: Quick Recertification Series. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.

Merson, J, Thatcher, E, 2021. Hypothyroidism. AAPA: Quick Recertification Series. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.

Bludorn J, Merson, J, 2021. Nasal Foreign Body. AAPA: Quick Recertification Series. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.

Contact Information

Awards and Honors

2022 Department of PA Studies Faculty of the Year Award

This award honors a distinguished faculty member who demonstrates excellence in classroom teaching and in supporting PA students’ growth and development in the didactic setting.

2022 IHP Teaching Excellence Academy for Learning Fellow

The aim of TEAL is to: 

  • Promote the scholarship of teaching and learning
  • Honor Institute faculty who demonstrate sustained contributions to teaching excellence
  • Spread promising practices in health professions education
  • Provide mentorship for early career faculty members

2020 Boston University Sargent College Alumni Professional Achievement Award

Given to an alumnus/a who has translated his or her Sargent experience into practice, resulting in the advancement of health and rehabilitation sciences.

2019 Advisor of the Year

MGH Institute of Health Professions 

2019 Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA) Rising Star Award

This award recognizes a program faculty member with three to seven years of service who has made noteworthy contributions to PA education.

2018 Award for Excellence in Advancing Interprofessional Education and Practice (Crimson Care Collaborative)

This award honors an individual or team that has distinguished itself in advancing interprofessional education or practice (IPE/P) within, or in collaboration with, MGH Institute of Health Professions.