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Emergency Medicine

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Program Goals

The McMaster University Family Medicine/Emergency Medicine Program is a one-year program designed to provide physicians, who have completed a Family Medicine residency, with the specific competence to practice Emergency Medicine complete with leadership skills to assess, promote, and integrate emergency health services within the community.

Education is both didactic and hands on, with direct clinical exposure benefiting the patient in both the urban and community sites across Southern Ontario. The teaching hospitals used are organized by specialty, such as burn/trauma, oncology, pediatric trauma, and emergency psychiatry. The hospitals, both urban and community, offer emergency departments with adequate patient volume supported by comprehensive medical and surgical services. Overall, the sites offer a wide range of pathology.

Our approach to teaching encourages the development of competency in emergency medicine care for adults, children, elderly and special populations that commonly utilize Canadian emergency medical services. We utilize ongoing competency assessment and foster an environment of continued assessment and improvement. Evaluation and feedback is ongoing throughout training, through the use of a competency committee that collaborates with the learner to encourage specific structured learning off shift to augment the clinical learning experience.

Program Highlights

Simulation –  The simulation curriculum offers at least 10 – 12 sessions per academic year. Residents will tackle complex medical cases and hone your skills in communication, leadership, and resource utilization skills. We are also working with the Pediatric Emergency group to implement a more robust pediatric simulation curriculum to ensure more exposure to challenging low frequency, high equity cases. Session are led by staff with simulation expertise and using high fidelity mannequins.

Tintinalli Rounds – These sessions are designed specifically to be more interactive and focus on clinical process opposed to significant time spent on pathophysiology.

Clinical Skills – Clinical skills sessions will occur throughout the year. Sessions will include a day in the anatomy lab practicing on cadavers, at least 4 simulation sessions with high fidelity mannequins, Ortho casting sessions and CT Head sessions.

Practice Orals – There will be regularly scheduled practice oral sessions throughout the academic year. During these sessions faculty will deliver a practice oral to you that will closely mimic the environment of the orals during your EM examination.

Written Examinations – You will be given a sample exam at least twice per academic year as well as a National In-Training Practice Exam that will be written in the Spring of your academic year.

Journal Club – The program runs monthly Journal Club sessions to assist in the development of the resident’s critical appraisal skills.

Ultrasound – You will be provided with an Ultrasound Boot-Camp in the fall of your academic year. This course includes pre-course online, practical course and written exam. You will also have an advanced Ultrasound Day following your certification. This session will expose you to resuscitation and advanced ultrasound scans in a case based format, covering a condensed version of many advanced scans. There are remote virtual POCUS rounds with an optional and mandatory component.

Longitudinal Rounds (ECG) – weekly virtual rounds on ECG and cardiology based topics.

Scholarly Work and Research Project – A program requirement is supported by the Department of Family Medicine and Division of Emergency Medicine to develop scholarly work such as research, teaching, interprofessional collaboration and teaching throughout the third year program.

Program Curriculum

This residency program is for 1 year.

The length of training is one year with the resident designated as a third year resident in the Family Medicine/Emergency Medicine Program. Rotations include ICU, CCU, Trauma, Plastic and Emergency Medicine. Over the three years there is a minimum of eight blocks of training in the Emergency Department with a minimum of four blocks in the third year. One of the eight blocks will include significant experience in Emergency Pediatrics. Emergency Pediatrics is obtained at McMaster Children’s Hospital. Candidates are urged to make use of their elective time in their first or second year of Family Medicine to enroll in some of the above rotations.

The manner in which the Emergency Medicine resident chooses to undertake his/her training has an obvious effect on the outline of the program. However, certain rotations are considered mandatory and must be completed under any of the training formula.

A “typical” residency year would include:

  • 4 blocks – Emergency Medicine
  • 1 block – Emergency Pediatrics
  • 1 block – Community Emergency Medicine
  • 1 block – Trauma / Acute Care Surgery
  • 2 blocks – ICU
  • 1 block – CCU
  • 1 block – Selective
  • 1 block – Anesthesia
  • 1 block – Plastics/orthopedics


Selectives are completed in a variety of formats, and approval is based on a set of criteria. Historically, selectives have included Toxicology in New York City (varying availability), or an additional block of Trauma, Emergency or Surgery. These selective are tailored towards the resident’s stated objectives.

Academic Activities

Emergency Medicine core content material is presented at the weekly academic day. The academic day takes place on Thursday’s. Core content topics include radiology, examination preparation, bioethics, and administration.

In addition, there will be multiple Simulation Sessions with high fidelity simulators through the academic year. Finally, there is a day in the Anatomy Lab practicing procedures on cadavers.

Academic day program includes:

  1. Tintinalli Rounds
  2. Procedural Skills Session
  3. Practice Oral Examination
  4. Practice Written Examination
  5. ECG rounds

Residents are required to attend monthly Journal Club.

EMS rideouts will be performed during the Emergency Medicine block, 2 days.

Scholarly Work and Research Academic Project / Rounds

Residents are expected to complete a resident research project on evidence based medicine skills and have the ability to search data bases, critically appraise the articles and present the material at a resident research day. This may take the form of a CQI/QA project; literature search or a formal research design study. It is expected that residents will display competence in preparing, practicing and evaluating evidence based medicine. Other aspects of scholarly work including teaching, interprofessional collaboration and leadership are also included / considered.

Course in Ultrasound

An Ultrasound Course following the National  principles is offered in the early fall of the EM year. This course teaches the technical skills and didactic principles of Point of Care US (POCUS). The remainder of the course is spent scanning volunteers to achieve the required number of scans. We have ample faculty available to assist with attaining the required scans for full certification if unable during the US Course. A second Advanced US Course will be completed in the spring of the EM year. There are longitudinal options for POCUS on Emergency Medicine blocks.

Social & Wellness

At the start of the academic year each resident is connected to a Faculty Mentor to support learning and career goals. There are many opportunities to engage with our Royal College colleagues, including several social events.  In addition, the annual Resident Retreat is organized with EM Faculty.

Applicants must have successfully completed two years of a Family Medicine Residency Program leading to certification by the College of Family Physicians of Canada. Applicants must also have written, or be eligible to write, the College of Family Physicians of Canada Certification Examination.

Application Requirement

The application process will run through the CARMS match. The website will be available at All applicants for the Family Medicine/Emergency Medicine Residency Program are required to:

  • Complete the National Application form
  • Complete the National Match Registration Form
  • Provide three letters of reference and Referee Assessment forms
  • Provide a Family Medicine Program Director’s Assessment of Applicant form
  • Written letter to Dr. Erich Hanel, Program Director, Family Medicine/Emergency Medicine Residency program stating your reasons for wishing to join this program
  • Send a curriculum vitae.

The Selection Committee will be chaired by the Program Director and will consist of resident representatives and faculty members from the Residency Steering Committee. For application deadlines and interview dates, please refer to the CaRMS website.

Dr. Liane Shipp-Dey
Division Director
Division of Emergency Medicine
Hamilton General Hospital

Dr. Erich Hanel
Program Director
CCFP Emergency Medicine Residency Program
Hamilton General Hospital

Dr. Kyle Dorosh
Assistant Program Director
CCFP Emergency Medicine Residency Program
Hamilton General Hospital

Dr. Kayleigh Hagerman 
Regional Education Coordinator
Niagara Regional Campus
CCFP Emergency Medicine Residency Program

Dr. Adrianna Arkilander
Regional Education Coordinator
Kitchener Waterloo Regional Campus
CCFP Emergency Medicine Residency Program

Zachary Baker
Emergency Medicine Education Associate
CCFP Emergency Medicine Residency Program
Hamilton General Hospital

Bronwyn Andrews
PGY 1 Core and Emergency Medicine Electives
Hamilton Emergency Departments (SJH, HGH, JHCC)