Jump to content
Premed 101 Forums

Recommended Posts

Hello all, Im an IMG interested in General Surgery and was wondering what the different pros and cons of each program are, and what respective residents think about their programs 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When you say you're an IMG -- what school did you go to? When did you graduate? You may find that you will have a very difficult time matching to a Canadian general surgery specialty.

Last year (2019), 83/83 spots in general surgery were filled in the first iteration. Of the 83, only 4 spots were given to IMGs. One at Ottawa, and 3 at Toronto. The year before that (2018) again only 4 spots for IMGs - 1 at Ottawa, 2 at Toronto, 1 at Manitoba. In 2017, there were 5 IMGs that matched to General Surgery -- 1 at Ottawa, 3 at Toronto, 1 at Manitoba.

2016 - 4 IMG General Surgery spots across Canada - 1 Ottawa, 3 Toronto

2015 - 5 IMG General Surgery spots across Canada  - 1 Ottawa, 3 Toronto, 1 Manitoba

All of this data (and previous years data) is available on the CARMS website. It seems like in the last 5 years, an IMG has never been accepted to either of the programs you mentioned.

You may want to call the McMaster and McGill general surgery programs and ask if they actually take IMGs. Even then, it will be extremely competitive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, Med0123 said:

Actually, McGill takes a significant number IMG from Saudi Arabia every year

Isnt that a special type of IMG tho? Funded by the Saudi Arabians with the stipulation that they go back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, hero147 said:

Isnt that a special type of IMG tho? Funded by the Saudi Arabians with the stipulation that they go back.

Yea Saudis are a whole different ball game. They are paid by their own scholarships and sponsors and the program actually makes good coin from training them (in addition to FREE LABOUR). IMG spots on CaRMS are the exact same spots at could be going to CMGs. So when CMGs are going unmatched, it's puzzling why spots are open to IMGs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, swoman said:

Yea Saudis are a whole different ball game. They are paid by their own scholarships and sponsors and the program actually makes good coin from training them (in addition to FREE LABOUR). IMG spots on CaRMS are the exact same spots at could be going to CMGs. So when CMGs are going unmatched, it's puzzling why spots are open to IMGs.

In Ontario I always understood those non saudi IMG spots came with extra provincial government funding for the university vs a CMG spot. And the university likes extra cash a lot more than they like helping their students. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Med0123 said:

Actually, McGill takes a significant number IMG from Saudi Arabia every year

Yes, that is true when you look at the numbers overall, from every discipline, but not when you are looking at a specialized program like General Surgery.

If you look at the CARMS Data for CMGs (see below), there are only about 4-6 spots in General Surgery residency spots per school per year. Some Gen Surg programs have only 2-3 spots per year. The school with the highest number of residency spots in General Surgery is at U of T, and the number of spots is 10. 

https://www.carms.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2019_r1_tbl27e.pdf

For IMGs, it's only 4-5 spots for General Surgery in the entire country (see below).

https://www.carms.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2019_r1_tbl28e.pdf

There are currently 1100 medical residents from Saudi Arabia across all R years and schools and disciplines. In any one application year, there might be ~200 S.A. residents across all of the disciplines (family, internal, the various surgical and non surgical specialities) across all of the schools. McGill has 225 S.A. residents across all years, all specialities. 

So, there are not loads and loads of trainees from Saudi Arabia in General Surgery. General Surgery residency programs tend to be quite small -- around 4-6 residents per year per school. There might be one student per year of those who is from Saudi Arabia.

The original poster is aiming for 1 or 2 spots within a very select number of General Surgery programs -- and likely not from McGill or McMaster.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is a Non-Carribean IMG like myself with no surgery related research experience, 4 years from graduation a good candidate for a Gen Surg residency? what sort of residency program has the kind of 'leniency' in terms of graduation date? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/17/2019 at 4:41 PM, WoredeWold said:

Is a Non-Carribean IMG like myself with no surgery related research experience, 4 years from graduation a good candidate for a Gen Surg residency? what sort of residency program has the kind of 'leniency' in terms of graduation date? 

The typical IMG who gets into something as competitive as Gen sx as an IMG is a CSA new grad or 1 year out of graduation with (optional) strong step scores 250+, strong MCC and NAC OSCE scores, research, connections (whether that be through family or through networking) and electives. If you are a true IMG, the best way to break in is to do research for at least a year with a staff and shadow that staff, it will make you more competitive. Some of these IMG spots are even filled internally, i.e. they have a candidate in mind they have worked with before.  

The most lenient residency program in terms of graduation date is probably family medicine.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/6/2019 at 11:04 AM, avocado_toast said:

Yes, that is true when you look at the numbers overall, from every discipline, but not when you are looking at a specialized program like General Surgery.

If you look at the CARMS Data for CMGs (see below), there are only about 4-6 spots in General Surgery residency spots per school per year. Some Gen Surg programs have only 2-3 spots per year. The school with the highest number of residency spots in General Surgery is at U of T, and the number of spots is 10. 

https://www.carms.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2019_r1_tbl27e.pdf

For IMGs, it's only 4-5 spots for General Surgery in the entire country (see below).

https://www.carms.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/2019_r1_tbl28e.pdf

There are currently 1100 medical residents from Saudi Arabia across all R years and schools and disciplines. In any one application year, there might be ~200 S.A. residents across all of the disciplines (family, internal, the various surgical and non surgical specialities) across all of the schools. McGill has 225 S.A. residents across all years, all specialities. 

So, there are not loads and loads of trainees from Saudi Arabia in General Surgery. General Surgery residency programs tend to be quite small -- around 4-6 residents per year per school. There might be one student per year of those who is from Saudi Arabia.

The original poster is aiming for 1 or 2 spots within a very select number of General Surgery programs -- and likely not from McGill or McMaster.

The above poster is correct in terms of Canadian citizens/permanent resident IMGs applying through CaRMS for provincially funded government spots.  But, there's another pathway that she/he is missing for trainees who may not be Canadian citizens/PR and come to Canada with their home country's sponsorship and funding under an educational visa. 

https://www.saudibureau.org/en/inside.php?ID=17

Foreign government funded spots are purchased directly from the university and local hospital group -- they have no relationship with the provincially funded CaRMS spots.  They have nothing to do with the CaRMS funded IMG spots. The applicants don't go through CaRMS and aren't captured in their statistics.   I think the appeal to the University and training program is obvious. Theoretically, the reason these spots are offered (beyond international education 'altruism') is because excess training capacity, that our own provinces don't predict a future market need for/ can't afford, is going unused.  More hands make lighter work within the programs themselves as well and the whole structure benefits financially.

It's not talked about much as it's not relevant to most applicants.  This stream (it used to be called 'Stream 3" I think) does bring many IMGs to Canada to train as residents and these doctors are fully integrated into our training program.  Residents come from Middle Eastern/North African countries (Saudi and Libya were sending lots in the past), and some from South America I think.    

McMaster has definitely taken foreign funded IMGs into surgical residencies in the past though they stopped in about 2011 in most programs.  I have no idea if they've started again.  

There are ongoing issues with this stream.

Most notoriously recently you're subject to the whims of your home government:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-canada-doctors/saudi-trainee-doctors-set-to-head-home-from-canada-in-diplomatic-row-idUSKBN1KT2II

Additionally, returning home versus staying in Canada at the end of training gets nasty sometimes--especially in tight job markets.  A lot happens while these students are here and completely integrated into the residency for 5-7 years.  Marriages, kids, lifestyle expectations, peer groups all change.  Plus they pass the Royal College, are often very highly locally respected, and have tons of local professional connections.   Many have stayed in Canada and enriched every level of our medical system. But again, the complications are self-evident both domestically and back in the country that paid for the training. 

Personally, I find it a bit funny how few people realize that this stream exists given that it's pretty obvious if you've spent any time with residents that the number of foreign grads doesn't line up with the CaRMS number (among other differences).

It's also funny how Canadians perceive their relationship with the existence of these externally funded residency spots given that the Kingdom government pulled their students back as a retaliatory measure to punish Canada in the news story above. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/17/2019 at 4:41 PM, WoredeWold said:

Is a Non-Carribean IMG like myself with no surgery related research experience, 4 years from graduation a good candidate for a Gen Surg residency? what sort of residency program has the kind of 'leniency' in terms of graduation date? 

First barrier is that you must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident to even apply. 

(Unless your from a country that funds spots independently--see last post)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...