Sunday November 23, 2014

New family physicians on local locum


Access to physician care continues to improve for Saskatchewan residents. Three new family physicians are now providing locum service and practicing in Canora and Melville thanks to the Saskatchewan International Physician Practice Assessment (SIPPA) program.

Drs. Singh (Canora), Obiora (Canora) and Ker (Melville) join many other International Medical Graduate (IMG) colleagues already practising in Saskatchewan. SIPPA is a unique, made-in-Saskatchewan program that assesses IMGs on their education and clinical ability before allowing them to practice medicine. The program is administered by the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Medicine. Since the program began in 2011, 134 more doctors are practising in communities across the province.

“Patients from all across Saskatchewan have better access to family doctors because of this program,” Minister Responsible for Rural and Remote Health Tim McMillan said. “SIPPA is one of many initiatives that is helping us meet the health care needs of our growing population. In total, there are over 400 more doctors practising in the province than there were 7 years ago.”

“While we continue to recruit and retain our own locally trained physicians, SIPPA is helping us fill immediate vacancies throughout the province. This unique, made in Saskatchewan program is allowing more IMGs to practice here and that is good news,” said Erin Brady, saskdocs’ interim CEO. “We are seeing more IMGs from within Canada apply and that is encouraging because we have been working hard at reaching out to this particular group.”

“SIPPA offers an assessment opportunity for internationally trained physicians who would otherwise not be eligible to practice in Saskatchewan. This program ensures each candidate meets both the clinical requirements to practise medicine in Saskatchewan, as well as meeting the unique health care needs of specific communities,” said Dr. Penny Davis, Medical Director of SIPPA for the College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan.

In collaboration with the health regions, saskdocs continues to recruit physicians through direct recruitment initiatives, establishing relationships with medical students and residents, local, national and international advertising, and attending career fairs at home and abroad.

Family physician IMGs seeking more information on SIPPA and the opportunities that are currently available are encouraged to contact saskdocs at or call toll-free (in North America) 1-888-415-3627 or 306-933-5000.



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