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Glad to see some discussion on here about peds!

 

How can I help? This is tough to comment on and a lot of my info is very very much my own opinion/experience from electives/CaRMS. I won't comment on places I don't know enough about. Ordered roughly by program size...

 

Toronto - great rep, competitive program to get into, sweet hospital, highly subspecialized clinical exposure (for better or worse), lots of fellows to wait in line behind, research emphasized, cost of living high, traditional call model

 

Ottawa - hard work, serves a huge population of francophone children (if you don't know french you had better hope your med student does), not a great rep, nice hospital, nice city (esp for moderate cost of living)

 

Mac - great rep (resident's union/PARO award for top program in the province (not just peds programs) last two years in a row), lots of teaching, happy residents, focus on generalist training, research weak, rough city (but decent cost of living), established night float system (if that is your thing), gross hospital

 

Western - good clinical exposure, good responsibility, nice hospital, unhappy residents, weak reputation, strong research (?), good cost of living

 

Queens - great city/lifestyle, low cost of living, limited clinical exposure (very sick kids get flown out, gotta travel to Ottawa to do a lot of rotations where you have to play second fiddle to the UO residents, very few subspecialists) but lots of responsibility, small program so lots of call (traditional model), research weak

 

Winnipeg - unfortunately you have to be in Winnipeg (rough city, hospital in rough area), weak rep, OK research, great if you are into rural/aboriginal kind of stuff, residents pretty happy, well supported program

 

NOSM - All over the map including Ottawa (journeyman type lifestyle), limited clinical exposure (focussed on primary care/rural health issues, minimal subspecialist experience), small resident body, varied experience depends greatly on independence, relatively new program growing pains, potentially quite lonely

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Glad to see some discussion on here about peds!

 

How can I help? This is tough to comment on and a lot of my info is very very much my own opinion/experience from electives/CaRMS. I won't comment on places I don't know enough about. Ordered roughly by program size...

 

Toronto - great rep, competitive program to get into, sweet hospital, highly subspecialized clinical exposure (for better or worse), lots of fellows to wait in line behind, research emphasized, cost of living high, traditional call model

 

Ottawa - hard work, serves a huge population of francophone children (if you don't know french you had better hope your med student does), not a great rep, nice hospital, nice city (esp for moderate cost of living)

 

Mac - great rep (resident's union/PARO award for top program in the province (not just peds programs) last two years in a row), lots of teaching, happy residents, focus on generalist training, research weak, rough city (but decent cost of living), established night float system (if that is your thing), gross hospital

 

Western - good clinical exposure, good responsibility, nice hospital, unhappy residents, weak reputation, strong research (?), good cost of living

 

Queens - great city/lifestyle, low cost of living, limited clinical exposure (very sick kids get flown out, gotta travel to Ottawa to do a lot of rotations where you have to play second fiddle to the UO residents, very few subspecialists) but lots of responsibility, small program so lots of call (traditional model), research weak

 

Winnipeg - unfortunately you have to be in Winnipeg (rough city, hospital in rough area), weak rep, OK research, great if you are into rural/aboriginal kind of stuff, residents pretty happy, well supported program

 

NOSM - All over the map including Ottawa (journeyman type lifestyle), limited clinical exposure (focussed on primary care/rural health issues, minimal subspecialist experience), small resident body, varied experience depends greatly on independence, relatively new program growing pains, potentially quite lonely

Wow, this is awesome. Thanks for this. Wish I had known how great people say Mac is earlier though I would have set up an elective there! I feel like it's tough to get an idea of this stuff because lots of staff are out of touch and sometimes residents are biased towards their program or only interviewed at a few.

 

So thank you!

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Ottawa resident here.

 

I am obviously partial to the program, but I would say our program does have a great reputation across the country. I moved half way across the country (from BC) to train in Ottawa because of its reputation for hands-on experiences that I honestly think is unmatched...many people would agree it is the best program for acute care. We are on call for the ICUs a lot (PICU, and two different NICUs) as cross covering residents after we have finished the respective rotations. I can't think of many, or any, other programs that do this (either because of different call systems, lack of a formal PICU, etc). As senior residents, we are also on call without fellows which allows us to be extremely comfortable with caring for sick children, with resuscitation of premature newborns etc. Yet I can say I've always felt supported by the staff and they will come in if need be. I'm not the personality type to be fighting for experiences (and I know what it is like coming from UBC!) so this was a good fit for me. In my first year I already had lots of experience with lumbar punctures, intubations of premie babies, etc. I have no doubt at the end of my time here I will have had a solid general pediatrics training and more. Fellowship program directors know our residents are especially strong and everyone/almost everyone I can think of in the last two years matched to their number one fellowship choice.

 

There was a statistic recently that CHEO is the busiest children's hospital in the country and I am not surprised, given our huge catchment area in Ontario, Nunavut and inadvertently many of the Québec patients who come across the border. So volume and exposure are more than plenty.

 

I do agree - I think our program is hard work. I can't objectively compare the experience with other programs. Nevertheless, I think the amount of call that pediatrics residency involves is often underestimated but unfortunately that is something that we have all signed up for!

 

Lots of other strengths include that all residents have a protected rotation to work up in Iqaluit for 4+ weeks, a great experience for those interested in "global health"/working in low resource settings like myself.

 

I think the biggest strength of our program is the tightness of the resident group. That is honestly the biggest factor of what is getting me through residency--which is hard for many reasons, but navigating a new system in a new city can be very difficult. I have depended on my co-residents, from all years, to help me through stressful situations, to collaborate on projects, to switch call shifts etc. We get together a lot outside of the hospital and I have been able to make best friends here in Ottawa easily. As much as the structure of the program is important, the social aspect of the resident group, I would say, has been even more important to me.

 

I'd be glad to answer any other questions. In addition to Ottawa I did electives at UBC, Calgary, Toronto and McGill; interviewed at 11 Peds programs in my year; and am now happily here. :)

 

Hope that helps.

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Ottawa resident here.

 

I am obviously partial to the program, but I would say our program does have a great reputation across the country. I moved half way across the country (from BC) to train in Ottawa because of its reputation for hands-on experiences that I honestly think is unmatched...many people would agree it is the best program for acute care. We are on call for the ICUs a lot (PICU, and two different NICUs) as cross covering residents after we have finished the respective rotations. I can't think of many, or any, other programs that do this (either because of different call systems, lack of a formal PICU, etc). As senior residents, we are also on call without fellows which allows us to be extremely comfortable with caring for sick children, with resuscitation of premature newborns etc. Yet I can say I've always felt supported by the staff and they will come in if need be. I'm not the personality type to be fighting for experiences (and I know what it is like coming from UBC!) so this was a good fit for me. In my first year I already had lots of experience with lumbar punctures, intubations of premie babies, etc. I have no doubt at the end of my time here I will have had a solid general pediatrics training and more. Fellowship program directors know our residents are especially strong and everyone/almost everyone I can think of in the last two years matched to their number one fellowship choice.

 

There was a statistic recently that CHEO is the busiest children's hospital in the country and I am not surprised, given our huge catchment area in Ontario, Nunavut and inadvertently many of the Québec patients who come across the border. So volume and exposure are more than plenty.

 

I do agree - I think our program is hard work. I can't objectively compare the experience with other programs. Nevertheless, I think the amount of call that pediatrics residency involves is often underestimated but unfortunately that is something that we have all signed up for!

 

Lots of other strengths include that all residents have a protected rotation to work up in Iqaluit for 4+ weeks, a great experience for those interested in "global health"/working in low resource settings like myself.

 

I think the biggest strength of our program is the tightness of the resident group. That is honestly the biggest factor of what is getting me through residency--which is hard for many reasons, but navigating a new system in a new city can be very difficult. I have depended on my co-residents, from all years, to help me through stressful situations, to collaborate on projects, to switch call shifts etc. We get together a lot outside of the hospital and I have been able to make best friends here in Ottawa easily. As much as the structure of the program is important, the social aspect of the resident group, I would say, has been even more important to me.

 

I'd be glad to answer any other questions. In addition to Ottawa I did electives at UBC, Calgary, Toronto and McGill; interviewed at 11 Peds programs in my year; and am now happily here. :)

 

Hope that helps.

Thanks for the fantastic info. I'm doing a CTU elective there in February so maybe I'll see you around!

 

I'd love to hear what you thought of other places you did electives/interviewed.

 

(And how you managed to get so many interviews! Haha)

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