Our 2019 report features updated data on the job status of newly certified specialist physicians and highlights some of the key enablers and complex barriers to finding employment.
Despite troubling patient wait lists, a number of newly minted medical specialists in Canada face employment challenges at the time of certification.
Since 2011, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada has been collecting data on specialists and subspecialists through:
An initial survey sent to all newly certified specialists between four to 12 weeks following their final Royal College certification examinations.
A follow-up survey sent to those who reported employment challenges in the initial survey. This survey is sent between 12 to 17 months following their Royal College certification.
This 2019 report examines:
Note: this report delves into the employment challenges experienced by specialists and does not look into employment issues that may affect family physicians.
There are a number of complex factors affecting employment, including:
Too few available positions in some specialties
Family matters: desire or need to stay near family
Fewer hires and access to operating room time and resources
Poor access to job listings
The need for spousal employment
The delayed retirement of established specialists
Working with our national and provincial stakeholders, we aim to be a catalyst for solutions on physician employment challenges, and to inform health workforce and career planning. Future reports will explore medical workforce issues such as: do employment patterns affect men and women equally? Is working a locum (i.e., temporary replacement) a deliberate career choice or a stopgap until a permanent post is secured?