Over the past six decades we have seen significant growth in the number of residency training disciplines certified by the Royal College and the College Family Physicians of Canada, including 29 Royal College specialities, 36 subspecialities, and 16 diploma areas, as well as 19 areas of enhanced skills in Family Medicine. 

Disciplines have a profound societal impact within health care, where resident doctors serve a dual role as both postgraduate trainees and health care providers. The mix of disciplines ultimately guides the supply of physicians in different specialties and locations across the country.

Entry routes, or how one enters into residency and one’s discipline is a key step in the postgraduate medical education system.

RDoC’s Role

RDoC has developed a formal position and national advocacy approach to address and influence changes in education delivery that align with patient needs and support learner transitions across the education continuum and into practice.

We believe that the mix of PGME entry disciplines, and their ability to serve the needs of the Canadian health care system, must be continually re-evaluated to ensure they are aligned with societal and patient needs, adequate generalist skills, and practice and career flexibility.

With this in mind, RDoC has identified four guiding principles around social accountability, coordination of decisions, versatility, and relevance to future practice.

Accompanying the principles is a comprehensive set of calls to action for medical educators, health authorities, and governments to consider when discussing entry routes and medical education reform.

RDoC is co-chairing the Entry Routes Working Group, which has reframed the discussion from “entry disciplines” to “entry routes”.

January 2017: RDoC hosts the first Entry Routes Working Group Meeting
Representatives from RDoC, FMRQ, CFMS, FMEQ, UGME, & PGME met to develop the Working Group’s Terms of Reference and Problem Statement.

April 2016: Stakeholder meetings and presentations at the Canadian Conference for Medical Education (CCME)
RDoC representatives made several presentations on the Entry Disciplines Principles and Calls to Action to key stakeholders and conference attendees.

November 2015: Position Paper Principles on Entry Disciplines and Framework for Medical Education Reform Released
This position paper was released, including a set of four principles for medical educators, health authorities, and governments to consider when discussing entry disciplines and medical education reform.

2014: Draft Principles on Entry Disciplines
RDoC presented the Draft Principles for discussion and feedback at the June 13th RDoC Annual General Meeting Town Hall session.

2014: Draft Key Principles and Calls for Action
RDoC drafted a set of Key Principles and Calls for Action that articulate the resident perspective and priorities. These principles and calls to action are intended to serve as the platform for RDoC advocacy with national stakeholders and decision-makers to ensure that changes to the current system meet both the needs of trainees and the patients they serve.

November 22, 2016: Entry Disciplines and Medical Education Reform
Dr. Melanie Bechard presented the RDoC principles on Entry Disciplines to the Physician Resource Planning Advisory Committee.

April 19, 2016: A Framework for Medical Education Reform
Dr. Vishal Varshney gave a poster presentation on the RDoC principles on Entry Disciplines at CCME.

April 17, 2016: Presentation to PG Deans
Dr. Tom McLaughlin presented the RDoC principles on Entry Disciplines to the Postgraduate Deans of Medical Education.

April 16, 2016: Panel Session on Entry Disciplines
Dr. Tom McLaughlin presented the RDoC principles on Entry Disciplines as part of a panel discussion at the CFMS Spring General Meeting.

  • Work with the AFMC and other member organizations of the Entry Routes Working Group to further research the issue of entry routes and develop solutions for consideration.
  • Act as a strong voice for residents through ongoing advocacy and participation in national stakeholder discussions of entry disciplines and changes to the medical education system.