The MEDEX Northwest family mourns the recent passing of Phoumy Bounkeua, PA-C. He was so generous, those who knew him are saying. A real class act. A genuinely wonderful guy.

At the time of his admission to MEDEX Seattle Class 23 (1991), Phoumy had the distinction of being the youngest student ever admitted to the program. He went on to become one of the most respected and beloved PAs not only in the Seattle area but throughout the profession. Phoumy took the MEDEX mission to heart by working with a number of underserved communities over the course of his career, including the International District Clinic, the Veteran’s Administration and the Washington State Prison System. He assumed the mantle of leadership and service with grace, from his time as WAPA president to his committee service with AAPA to his work as an investigator for the Board of Medical Examiners. And perhaps most importantly, he brought a heartfelt brand of clinical care to his patients.   

We are sorry to lose Phoumy Bounkeua. Too soon, all would agree. But we are grateful for all that he accomplished during his time on earth, for his patients, for his colleagues, for his community, and for his profession.  

“What I want to say is this: thank you Dr. Richard Smith for giving the opportunity to a young refugee teenager to walk out of Cambodia, enroll in the PA program over 30 years ago, and become successful. I am successful, and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for that. Thank you, Dr. Richard Smith, and thank you everybody here for the opportunity.” Phoumy Bounkeua, PA-C, speaker and recipient of the MEDEX Champion Award at MEDEX’s 50th Anniversary Celebration held in 2019 at the Tacoma Museum of Glass.