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Paediatr Child Health. 2012 Jan;17(1):e7-e11.

Incorporating CanMEDS and subspecialty training into paediatric residency programs: Why are we still deficient?

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Division of Paediatrics, Sudbury Regional Hospital, Sudbury, Ontario;



The Royal College of Physician and Surgeons of Canada mandates that paediatric training programs in Canada incorporate subspecialty training and the teaching and evaluation of the seven CanMEDS roles into their curriculum. The literature suggests that newly practicing paediatricians feel inadequately prepared in many subspecialties and CanMEDS roles.


That either current training programs underestimate the importance of these areas for future practice, or that residents themselves feel that these areas are less important.


An online survey of Canadian paediatric residents and paediatric residency program directors was conducted to determine their views on various subspecialty areas and CanMEDS roles.


Fourteen of 16 Canadian paediatric programs participated, and 127 of 486 (26%) paediatric residents completed the survey. Overall, trainees were satisfied with their current training (86%), and 90% believed they would be adequately prepared for independent practice. Forty-six residents (40%) believed training programs place less importance on 10 of the subspecialties that newly practicing paediatricians felt less comfortable with (from a previous study conducted in 2006). However, at least 25% of residents themselves placed less importance on nine of these 10 areas. Residents also place less importance on two CanMEDS competencies which practicing paediatricians felt less comfortable with, including the medical aspects of palliative care (medical expert) and managing an efficient office practice (manager).


Residents and programs place less importance on specific areas of paediatric training, thus creating potential deficiencies in graduating paediatricians. Promotion of these topics during training may better prepare residents for future practice.


Internship and residency; Medical education; Pediatrics/education; Questionnaires

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