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Practicing FM in Quebec after training in another province

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Due to job circumstances for my significant other, a move to Montreal might be in my future. Currently, I'm training in family medicine in Ontario and this has obviously made me most familiar with that province's health care system. I'm interested in learning what practicing as a family doc is like in Quebec (Montreal specifically) and the QCFP's website nearly crashes my browser every time I try to go there.


I am not bilingual, but I'm not hopelessly unilingual either - I think adequately learning French is something within my grasp, but obviously wouldn't be immediate. Additionally, my initial current impression of the Quebec primary health care scene is that it's a bureaucratic nightmare to enter. I get the impression that I probably wouldn't be able to work in Montreal easily due to competition for PREMs in that area. I've heard a certain number of hours have to go towards work with certain populations, which is a thorn in some people's sides but doesn't seem like such a bad thing to me. Last but not least, I've heard the compensation lags behind other provinces to a fair degree. Is that accurate?


If so, I'm thinking it might almost be easier to live west of Montreal and commute to Cornwall to practice, should this situation come to pass.


Any input is appreciated! Thanks!

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I would think that practising family medicine is pretty much the same no matter where you go in Canada. It allows you to be pretty polyvalent in what you want to do, as many options (ER/Office/Walk-ins/Hospital/etc) open up to you.


However, practising in Quebec is quite bureaucratic indeed. You have to apply for a PREM (usually the summer before the year you're going to graduate) - in the city/town where you want to work. It's not just Montreal, but you actually have to apply for a PREM no matter where you go. Obviously, some places are more competitive than others. Once you got your PREM, you have to fulfill AMPs (which are activites medicales particulieres). These are 12 hrs/week (or the equivalent thereoff) - in areas that are more considered "of need". So it can be either ER, or some wards, or even home care, or walk ins but @ unfavourable hours, or OBS...etc. The list is not bad actually, because it ends up being quite a few things that qualify...so unless you were planning on just sitting in an office (which you can, as taking on a certain amount of vulnerable patients qualify as AMPs) - you won't usually have a problem to fulfill this...


Compensation does lag behind other provinces. However, it's going to get slightly better in July (as the FMOQ negociated some increase in our salaries). It's not much, but it's definitely better than nothing. I'd rather take that slight paycut and work in Montreal, than commuting to Cornwall to practice QD. I love Montreal, it's a great city, and I love my practice and i really can't complain! :)



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In Quebec, the Minister of Health and Social Services authorizes a target for recruitment of physicians each year, for each of the province's 18 administrative regions. These targets are either regional in the case of general practice, or defined by establishment in the case of specialized medicine. The targets are known as regional physician resource plans (PREMs). Only the establishment of specialist physicians in offices is not subject to PREMs.


These plans are reviewed each year in light of discrepancies observed between the resources in place and the needs to be filled. They take into account the attrition of practising physicians and the anticipated number of new doctors.


The detailed list of positions currently available by region and by establishment in Quebec in general practice and in specialties may be consulted on the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services Web site.


Also see this page for detailed info: http://www.santemontreal.qc.ca/En/drmg/lettre_prem2010.html

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