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University of Saskatchewan - Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation - Saskatoon

2022 R-1 Main Residency Match - first iteration
CMG Stream for CMG

Last approved on October 19, 2021

Summary of changes

Approximate Quota:

 2 

Accreditation status : Accredited

Provincial Criteria


Dr. Shane Wunder
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation 
Saskatoon City Hospital 701 Queen Street, Saskatoon, SK S7K 0M7 
and Wascana Rehabilitation Centre - 2180 23rd Avenue, Regina, SK S4S 0A5
Saskatoon/Regina, Saskatchewan, S7K 0M7
(306) 655-8669
(306) 655-8813
Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Explore the PM&R program at the U of S
Discover all that College of Medicine, Regina Campus offers when pursuing your residency training

Program Contacts

Adesola Ogundana
Program Administrative Assistant
adesola.ogundana@saskhealthauthority.ca
(306) 655-8669


Important Information

Applicants  are responsible for reviewing the University of Saskatchewan Policies for the R1 Match to determine if they meet all requirements and eligibility criteria. Failure to meet or provide proof of any of the stated requirements or documents may result in an applicant’s file not being reviewed or ranked.

CASPer Test
All applicants must complete the Casper test (Altus Suite). More information is available under Supporting Documentation-CASPer Exam.

Licensing
Matched applicants must be eligible for an educational register license with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan (CPSS) for a July 1st start date and must maintain eligibility for an educational register license throughout their entire training program. Any delays in providing all required documentation to CPSS may result in the following:

  • delay in issuance of an educational register license and a delay in start of postgraduate training beyond July 1st
  • release from CaRMS match contract

Applicants completing medical education at the University of Montreal, Sherbrooke, Laval, and the University of Ottawa (French stream) are required to submit proof of English language proficiency before the rank order deadline to demonstrate they meet CPSS requirements. More information is available under Supporting Documentation-Language Proficiency.

Credentialing
In order to commence and continue in Postgraduate Medical Education training programs, matched applicants must be eligible for and maintain privileges within the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) as determined by their credentialing process. The SHA requires successful applicants to submit a current criminal record check as part of their pre-resident application for appointment. Applicants with criminal records will be considered on a case by case basis by the College of Medicine in consultation with the SHA.

Resident Boot Camp
All matched applicants must attend a mandatory three-day Resident Boot Camp in late June. The purpose of the Boot Camp is to provide additional support to trainees as they transition to residency by introducing and consolidating baseline skills and knowledge needed to flourish during their residency years. The program will include interactive case-based and hands-on practice sessions. Stipends will be provided to trainees.

Advanced Cardiac Life Support
Matched applicants are required to provide proof of ACLS certification (current as of July 1, 2022) to the PGME office prior to starting their training program. The ACLS course must be endorsed by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and/or the American Heart Association. ACLS training that is not certified by these two organizations and/or is completed entirely through an online course will not be accepted. Applicants are responsible for all costs associated with obtaining ACLS certification.


General Instructions

Program application language: English


Supporting Documentation

Canadian citizenship
CaRMS partners with third-party organizations to verify your citizenship or permanent resident status. If your status is verified by one of these organizations, you will not need to provide citizenship documents in your application. If your citizenship status is not verified, you must provide one of the documents listed below.
Document must be notarized/certified
Required
Submit one of the following documents to verify your Canadian citizenship:
• Canadian Birth Certificate or Act of Birth
• Certificate of Canadian Citizenship
• Passport page showing Canadian Citizenship
• Canadian Permanent Resident Card (both sides of card)
• Canadian Citizenship Card (both sides of card)

All applicants must be Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents at the time of application and must submit a notarized/certified photocopy of one of the documents listed above. Please note that a copy of both sides of the Canadian Citizenship card or Permanent Resident card is required.

No other forms of verification will be accepted. Proof of citizenship must be current when file review opens and expired documents will not be accepted.

Language proficiency
Required
Submit one of the following documents to verify your language proficiency:
• IELTS
• Occupational English Test (OET) - Medicine
• Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) - General

CMG/USMG applicants who completed their medical education in an English medical school in Canada or the US are not required to submit proof of English language proficiency. 

Canadian applicants with medical education from the University of Montreal, Sherbrooke, Laval, and the University of Ottawa (French stream) are required to meet the English language proficiency requirements of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan. Applicants from French-speaking schools are required to complete one of the following language exams, or demonstrate other proof of English proficiency acceptable to CPSS. Applicants who are required to complete a language exam must submit a valid test score to CaRMS by the program rank order deadline. Please note that test scores must be valid as of July 1, 2022. Applicants who do not provide acceptable proof of language proficiency by the program rank order deadline will not be ranked. 

CPSS will accept valid test scores from one of the following language exams:

  • IELTS academic version and achieved a minimum of 7.0 in each of the components; or
  • OET-medicine version and achieved a minimum grade of B; or
  • CELPIP – General and achieved a minimum grade of 9 in all sections.

Alternative proof of language proficiency: CMG applicants attending a French speaking medical school and who completed high school in Canada with instruction entirely in English are required to submit their Canadian high school transcript as part of their CaRMS application if they would like to request an exemption from the CPSS English language requirement.

Applicants should not contact CPSS directly about their eligibility for licensure. Please direct any questions about language requirements or eligibility to della.toews@usask.ca

Reference documents
Required
Number requested: 3

We expect that the letters of reference will be from practicing physicians who have observed the candidate during an elective or other training or research experience.

Additional documents
Required
Medical School Transcript 

Order from your Registrar

Medical Student Performance Record 

Order from your Dean's office

Personal Letter 
Word count
Minimum : None
Maximum : None

A personal letter (approx. 600-750 words) is required that describes why you wish to enter Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. Expressed interest and future plans should be outlined. Candidates should demonstrate their knowledge of the specialty and indicate the various strengths that they believe make them an ideal candidate for PM&R in general and the program at the University of Saskatchewan in particular.

CASPer exam 

All applicants must complete the Casper test (Altus Suite) - a standardized, two-part online assessment of non-cognitive skills, interpersonal characteristics, and personal values. To complete the Casper test (Altus Suite) visit TakeAltus.com to create an account and for more information on test dates and requirements, and the Altus Suite assessments. Test dates are also listed under Saskatchewan provincial criteria. Please note these are a limited number of test dates available and no additional tests will be scheduled.

Note: Test scores are only valid for the match cycle in which the exam was taken. If applicants have taken the test in a past match cycle, they must write a new exam for the current match. Applicants who take the test in the 1st iteration of the current match are not eligible to rewrite the test in 2nd iteration.

Custom Résumé / CV 


Review Process

Applications submitted after file review has opened on January 31, 2022


Supporting documents (excluding letters of reference) that arrive after file review has opened  on  January 31, 2022


Letters of reference that arrive after the unmasking date on January 31, 2022



Interviews

Dates:

  • March 3, 2022
  • March 4, 2022
Program will notify all applicants through CaRMS Online and will send email invitations directly to applicants selected for an interview.
All interviews will be virtual for the 2022 CaRMS R-1 Match. We use a multiple mini interview (MMI) format. Candidates interact with faculty, residents and residency program administrative support staff in a format designed to explore the candidate's CanMEDS competencies, especially intrinsic roles of communicator and collaborator. As well, we explore informally how each candidate's needs and interests match those of the program.


Selection Criteria

Personal letter

Academic standing and performance

References specific to an elective or electives in physiatry

Multiple Mini Interviews

Program goals

The goal of our residency training program is to train physiatrists who are able to provide excellent patient care, education, and research in the field of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. They will be able to provide holistic interdisciplinary assessment and leadership in rehabilitation services. We provide flexibility in training to maximize patient exposure and experience in different working environments.

Selection process goals

We value applicants who have demonstrated excellent clinical skills, who have shown an interest in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation, who have had exposure to research, and who demonstrate attributes throughout the CanMEDS 2015 roles. They will demonstrate enthusiasm and ability to learn, and adaptability to the varying demands of physical medicine and rehabilitation training and practice.

File review process

Review team composition : Our review team is composed of the program director and assistant program director, two administrative/chief residents, two to five currently active physiatrists in the department, our research coordinator, and our program administrative assistant.

Average number of applications received by our program in the last five years : 0 - 50

Average percentage of applicants offered interviews : 76 - 100 %

Evaluation criteria :
File component Criteria
CV Content including research activities, education credentials, previous work, volunteer experience
Electives Evidence of exposure to physical medicine and rehabilitation
Examinations All applicants must complete a CASPer exam to be eligible for consideration
Extra-curricular Volunteer, coaching, or mentorship activities; other work experience
Leadership skills Holding roles or positions in student/medical/community leadership activities
MSPRs Areas of strength or concern
Personal letters Knowledge and exposure to physiatry; personal and professional experiences leading to this choice
Reference documents Interactions with peers, colleagues, teams
Research/Publications Involvement in prior research activities
Transcripts Successful completion of/progress in training

Elective criteria

We are looking for and rewarding applicants who have completed a broad range of electives including in our discipline.
We do not require applicants to have done onsite electives.

Due to COVID-19, it is expected and anticipated that elective experiences are greatly affected and appropriate consideration will be taken when reviewing applications. We wish to assure applicants this will not impact the eligibility of their application during the review and selection process.

Interview process

Interview format :



We routinely accommodate requests to re-schedule interviews for applicants.

Interview evaluation criteria :
Interview components Criteria
Collaboration skills We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations
Collegiality We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations
Communication skills We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations
Health advocacy We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations
Interest in the discipline Why do you want to be a physiatrist?
Interest in the program What do you know about our program?
Leadership skills We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations
Professionalism We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations
Scholarly activities We are attempting to explore your experiences and how you respond in certain situations

Information gathered outside of CaRMS application

Specifically, we may consider:







Ranking process

The behavior(s) exhibited below during the interview process may prevent an applicant from being ranked by our program :
   
   
   


Program Highlights

The University of Saskatchewan Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation is a provincial program that provides a flexible opportunity to take advantage of the best training opportunities in Saskatoon and Regina as well as opportunities to experience one or more regional centres.

We have integrated support for research with access to research scientists in both cities. We have strong working relationships with neurosciences, rheumatology and orthopedics. Both centres have established services in the core rehabilitation areas of stroke, spinal cord injury, brain injury and amputation. 

In Regina at Wascana Rehabilitation Centre, we have all core rehabilitation services at one site including inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation services, prosthetics and orthotics, specialized seating, and services for children with such diagnoses as cerebral palsy and spina bifida. In Saskatoon at Saskatoon City Hospital, there are inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation services.There is the opportunity to work with off site pediatric subspecialists as well as teams managing cerebral palsy, spina bifida and other neuromuscular diseases in addition to orthotics and prosthetics. As there is currently no certified pediatric physiatrist in Saskatchewan, we have an affiliation agreement in place with the University of Calgary where we require and support one block of pediatric rehabilitation.  There are also three community physiatrists in Saskatoon who see a mix of musculoskeletal and electrodiagnostic medicine. 

Our two tertiary rehabilitation centres in Saskatoon and Regina serve a provincial population of just over one million. We feel the single program distributed between both cities offers the best of flexibility, personalized attention and practical experience. There is excellent support from the College of Medicine to support this distributed model. We have a strong focus on neurological and musculoskeletal anatomy reinforced by five half days per year in the College of Medicine anatomy lab guided by an anatomist and physiatrist. We are building our expertise for integrating ultrasound into chemodenervation and musculoskeletal procedures. We also have optional EMG and ultrasound teaching rounds in addition to our regular academic teaching program. 


Program Curriculum

This residency program is for 5 years.

Program length of training does not exceed the Royal College or College of Family Physicians of Canada standard.

Introduction

  • One program with two sites creates opportunities to explore the strengths of rotations in both Saskatoon and Regina. All positions are based in Saskatoon by default, but there have been exceptions made to change an individual's geographic home base for personal considerations.

Academic Programming

  • We have a mandatory protected weekly Academic Half Day that our residents attend whether on rehabilitation service or off service.
  • Our academic half day schedule of topics are on a two year rotation with the objective that each resident will have encountered important topics at least twice throughout their training. 
  • We encourage a "flipped lecture" approach with a resident assigned as the leader of the session and expectations that all residents will contribute. A faculty preceptor is attached to each session. We encourage junior residents to work closely with senior residents to explore topics. 
  • We connect Saskatoon and Regina with a videoconference link and desktop sharing to facilitate interaction across the sites. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, our education sessions have been delivered predominantly virtually; we have since arranged the teaching schedule to allow for in-person sessions where required (eg: physical exam teaching).
  • We have approximately 5 interactive sessions per year in the anatomy lab facilitated by an anatomist and physiatrist dedicated to specific body regions. Coinciding with this are hands-on ultrasound sessions during which trainees practice scanning and use of ultrasound equipment which is led by 1-2 physiatrists with an interest in ultrasound. The sessions occur on the same day and focus on the same body region (eg: hand and wrist, shoulder, etc.)
  • We have initiated optional EMG rounds every other week during which principles, technical factors, and topics of interest related to electrodiagnostics are discussed. These are resident led with attendance by a faculty who practices EMG. 
  • We also have a Visiting Professor program annually where an external speaker is invited to provide several educational sessions on topics relevant to physiatry. This has been a longstanding program and is highly regarded amongst both residents and faculty. 
  • We have a practice OSCE and written exam 1-2 times per year which all residents participate in. Additionally, the Universities of Calgary, Alberta and Saskatchewan host a combined practice exam in the fall of each year which residents in their 3-5th years of training are invited to attend.

Research

  • We encourage and support research throughout the entire department.
  • A Research Manual has been developed to guide residents through both their research projects and preparation for meeting their certification requirements. 
  • We have a dedicated research coordinator at our Saskatoon City Hospital campus. In Regina, the Saskatchewan Health Authority funds research scientists who are easily available for assistance and support.
  • We require demonstration of basic research skills enabling completion of a scholarly project consistent with EPA TTP SA3. Research projects can be in clinical research, health system quality management, or basic science.
  • Progress on projects is to be presented annually by each resident to the department at a Research Half Day.
  • Residents also complete a Quality Improvement and Patient Safety course which is integrated into the Academic Half Day teaching schedule. This course runs every second year and allows residents to gain first hand practical experience with these important topics while working on personal QI projects.

Transition to Discipline (TTD)

  • This stage lasts for 3 blocks. It is designed to provide introduction and further experience to various areas of the specialty. Thus, the blocks are typically a mixture of inpatient and outpatient clinical encounters as well as acute care consult service. Residents will participate in team conferences and family meetings, and will also have exposure to allied health professionals including attending various therapy sessions.
  • This stage also includes 2 weeks of research during which residents start to formulate thoughts regarding their scholarly project. Working with the research coordinator, they will connect with various faculty and researchers who may help them develop ideas for a project. They may start the initial steps of a project such as literature review and ethics requirements. Working with the research coordinator, they will develop a plan for the timelines and distribution of future research time during their training.
  • Residents participate in after hours coverage of physiatry service in a “buddy call” system. This allows for pairing with a senior resident for peer mentorship, as well as serving as the orientation to physiatry related urgent and emergent issues.

Foundations

  • This stage consists of 15-16 blocks of off service rotations, including internal medicine and subspecialties, geriatrics, orthopedics, neurology, neurosurgery, rheumatology, and selectives.
  • Residents attend PM&R academic programming while on off-service rotations.
  • Residents participate in on call services for off-service rotations where applicable; they participate in physiatry on call services if no off-service call is required.
  • Residents also complete an online course entitled “The Role of the Practitioner in Indigenous Wellness” while in this stage.

Core

  • This stage consists of 36 blocks total, including stroke (4), brain injury (4), spinal cord injury (4), prosthetics and orthotics (4), neuromuscular (4), musculoskeletal (4), and elective/senior (5). It will also include 3 blocks of research.
  • Training experiences include a mixture of inpatient, outpatient, community and outreach clinics.
  • Residents are expected to obtain additional exposure in relevant areas on certain rotations. For example, attending urodynamic studies on spinal cord injury rotation, or a wound clinic on prosthetics rotation.
  • Pediatric rehabilitation (4 blocks) also occurs during this stage, and one block must be done in a tertiary children’s rehabilitation centre. We have an affiliation agreement with the University of Calgary to facilitate this. However, our residents have also gone to other Canadian centres. There are children's rehabilitation experiences available in both Saskatoon and Regina. 

Transition to Practice (TTP)

  • This stage consists of up to 11 blocks of additional training which is targeted to areas of identified need or areas of special interest in collaboration with the program director/assistant program director/mentor/academic advisor.
  • Training experiences may include a mixture of inpatient, outpatient, community and outreach clinics.
  • The intent of this phase is to facilitate further knowledge consolidation and to allow the resident to practice with further progressive independence.
  • Residents are encouraged to engage in further professional development as leaders and in details of practice management such as hospital administration meetings, billing and remuneration details, advocacy and patient group work as determined by their goals and needs.
  • Residents are permitted up to 6 blocks of out of province elective time throughout their training, in addition to the mandatory out of province pediatric block.
  • Residents continue to attend and contribute to academic programming in this stage, often contributing to the teaching and discussion at an expert level. 
  • Residents continue to provide rehabilitation on call services in this stage, and are often paired with a TTD resident on buddy call to facilitate their orientation to the program and physiatry urgent and emergent issues.


Training Sites

In Saskatoon, the department is located on the 7th floor of Saskatoon City Hospital (SCH), adjacent to the Kinsmen Park and across the river from Royal University Hospital and the College of Medicine. 

Strong academic ties exist with the other two main teaching hospitals in Saskatoon, Royal University Hospital and St. Paul's Hospital. Many rotations including orthopedic surgery, neurology, medicine and rheumatology are completed at these facilities.

In Regina, PM&R is centred at Wascana Rehabilitation Centre (WRC), located in Wascana Park.  WRC has inpatient and outpatient adult and pediatric rehabilitation programs and includes all of the therapies as well as orthotics and prosthetics under one roof.  Healthcare in Regina is integrated and there are close linkages between physiatrists and the physicians and therapists in the acute care hospitals, Regina General and Pasqua.

PM&R outreach clinics are held in Prince Albert and EMG clinics in Weyburn with the option of resident participation. 

There is an official academic affiliation with the Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the Foothills Hospital in Calgary for Pediatric Rehabilitation.  The Kinsmen Children's Centre in Saskatoon provides exposure to a broad range of pediatric disabilities and handicaps in a multidisciplinary setting.  In Regina, pediatric rehabilitation services including clinics for cerebral palsy, spina bifida, prosthetics and orthotics and developmental pediatrics are integrated into one facility at Wascana.

Residents have access to secure WiFi in all hospitals in both cities. Saskatchewan is making progress toward having imaging, drug information and laboratory information available electronically. Our two main training sites have recently merged our electronic medical record programs to have one provincial physiatry EMR. We have long used videoconferencing equipment for our Academic Half Day with screen sharing and also have interactive whiteboards (e.g. SmartBoard) to support interactive education sessions simultaneously at both campuses which facilitated the transition to pure virtual delivery during COVID restrictions. We now use a combination of purely virtual vs in-person education methods depending on the subject matter being taught.

Distributive Learning at the University of Saskatchewan

The College of Medicine, while physically located in Saskatoon, is a provincial resource in attitude and in practice. All postgraduate programs are expected to develop and incorporate into their curriculum, rotations in communities other than Saskatoon. The manner in which each program does this is not strictly prescribed by the College of Medicine - but is determined by the Residency Training Committee, taking into consideration the needs of their residents, and the excellent opportunities available in other locations. These rotations continue to evolve as we seek to build stronger and better programs.

Extensive support is available for out of Saskatoon rotations. The exact nature of this support varies with location and program. The communities involved, individual programs, the College of Medicine, and the Ministry of Health work collaboratively to ensure residents are not financially disadvantaged by the need to relocate.

While all residents are strongly encouraged to take advantage of educational experiences in other communities to ensure a well rounded education, the amount and format of such time is determined by the program committee. Royal College Specialty residents are expected to complete at least 10% - 20% of their training in Regina.

For PM&R, the residency program recognizes that both Regina and Saskatoon provide excellent educational opportunities for residents.  Some rotations are based in Saskatoon, some are based in Regina, and some rotations provide clinical and educational experience in both centres.  Residents also have the opportunity to attend outreach clinics in Prince Albert and Weyburn.

For residents assigned to short term rotations in Regina and Saskatoon, fully furnished private apartments are provided (laundry facilities, wi-fi, cable TV). Family friendly and pet friendly housing is available.

We recognize that family commitments are important for residents as they are for all physicians. We are committed to achieving an optimal balance between training requirements and family life.


FAQ

Q:  Can I contact a resident in the program to ask some questions?

A:   Yes, please email our chief residents - Andrea Kwan or Claire Tardif - if you have any questions.


Summary of changes

SUMMARY ID Section Summary of changes Updated on NOTIFY APPLICANTS SECTION NAME Actions