National Physician Assistant Week

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Every year, the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) celebrates National Physician Assistants Week from Oct. 6-12. As the celebration is now close to an end, California Pacific Orthopaedics is proud to have our team of Physician Assistants who excel in patient care and contribute their medical insights to the orthopaedic and sports medicine field. To learn more about all of our physician assistants, please visit our team page.


Physician Assistant Katie Ziesing, is the “house” PA for our San Rafael office location and works alongside our doctors during clinic. She is a long-time member of the CPO team and enjoys offering high quality care for all our patients. “We really follow a team mentality which really allows for the best communication regarding patient care. CPO is a large and busy practice, so it has been essential for everyone to work together to create an efficient patient flow.“

Katie studied health sciences for many years before becoming a PA, and has broad experience working in hospitals and medical offices, where she worked alongside physician assistants and practitioners. “I observed how PAs spend quality time with patients to ultimately help them get back on their feet. I was inspired and excited to pursue this career because I found that being a PA is essential in busy environments and leads to better patient care.”

As a physician assistant, she actively helps patients to recovery and says, “The best part of being a physician assistant is establishing relationships with patients and seeing improvement in their condition and ultimately quality of life. I am so fortunate to live in a community that values health, exercise and wellness, and I enjoy helping patients reach healthy goals following an injury or condition.”

She helps treat patients with a wide variety of orthopaedic conditions, including both acute and chronic injuries, but says that one of her favorite orthopaedic specialties is sports medicine. “I enjoy working with athletes and patients who are working through an exercise injury. It is so important to treat these injuries correctly. I value incorporating all treatment options to get patients back to their sport as quickly and safely as possible,” Katie says.


Physician Assistant Justin Matusalem, recently joined the CPO team this year and works alongside Dr. Ignatius and Dr. Valone in clinic and in surgery. He helps treat patients with both acute and chronic conditions and truly enjoys helping patients return to their favorite activities. “Our team at CalPacOrtho is well equipped to address all orthopedic concerns from head to toe,” Justin says. “I also love that Physician Assistants play such an integral role at CalPacOrtho in providing the highest quality of medical care for our patients.”

Justin has extensive involvement in the medical field and is surrounded by a family of medical professionals who inspired him to pursue a career as a physician assistant. “After volunteering and working in various healthcare positions, I encountered the PA profession and was fascinated how it continues to grow and makes a positive impact on our healthcare systems and patient care,” says Justin.

He says that his favorite orthopaedic specialty area is the spine due to his many encounters in the emergency room with patients experiencing back pain. “Working in the emergency room prior to PA school, I encountered many patients with chronic or acute on chronic back pain, but did not have the resources to truly address their pain. Being able to care for patients on our interdisciplinary spine team allows me to have to resources to help treat these conditions and allow patients to get back to the things they love and improve their overall quality of life.”

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