University of British Columbia - Pediatrics - Vancouver Island


Program Director

Dr. Janet Greenman / Dr. Jennifer Balfour (Vancouver Island)


Program Administrator

Janet White

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The UBC pediatric residency program uses the whole province of British Columbia to provide training, and emphasizes the excellent learning experiences in distributed community pediatric rotations. That is balanced with early subspecialty exposure and learning opportunities in all 17 pediatric subspecialties.

Our program has two sites. Most of the residents are based in Vancouver. There are also two positions each year based in Victoria for residents who want the experience of training in a smaller centre.

A smaller resident group at the Victoria site will mean strong connection to place, to faculty, and to interprofessional staff, and there is significant drive and energy to make this site of the program work. Our staff are very excited to have trainees at this site and we look forward to July 1st! The energy and enthusiasm we have for this will benefit you.

The Victoria site has a strong theme of valuing generalism, and producing trainees that are able to manage a wide range of subspecialized and general issues in the community setting.

Victoria-based residents will do rotations in the Victoria General Hospital Pediatric ICU, ER, NICU and CTU. A range of subspecialty and general pediatric experiences will occur both in a block and longitudinal format in Victoria. With our high volume of neonatology, a significant amount of neonatal experience will be gained in Victoria and as well some augmented experience may take place at one of several hospitals in the Lower Mainland, including BC Women’s Hospital. Some subspecialty electives may be sought at BC Children’s Hospital.

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Victoria is a lovely city, known across Canada for its mild climate and picturesque scenery. There are many outdoor activities available and vibrant city culture. Traffic is benign and inhabitants enjoy a high quality of life with many features of uptown and small town living. There is fascinating history in Victoria, with several museums and galleries, as well as an international airport and close proximity to Vancouver and Seattle.

Victoria General Hospital is an acute care hospital where the pediatric ward has 23 pediatric beds, a 5 bed Pediatric Intensive Care, a 22-bed neonatal intensive care unit, and a labour and delivery unit where there are 3200 deliveries per year. Outpatient specialized pediatric clinics exist here, in the areas of diabetes, oncology, asthma, cystic fibrosis, genetics, neurology, rheumatology, neonatal follow-up and cardiology.

Why choose Victoria?

  • Pleasant, temperate climate

  • Year-round outdoor activities (skiing, sailing, golfing, and more)

  • Bike to work most of the year

  • Spectacular scenery and beaches

  • Fine restaurants

  • Vibrant music and cultural scene

  • International Airport

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What is the specific layout of the “longitudinal mixed general pediatrics and subspecialty portion of the curriculum?

The layout allows trainees to rotate through subspecialty offices, and general pediatric offices throughout their first three years of training, and spend an equivalent amount of ‘block’ time on each rotation, spread over the R1-R3 years. This means, for example, that at the end of your training, the last endocrinology clinic you were at will not have been when you were an R1. That means you might do 7 cardiology clinics in first year, 3 in second year, and 6 in third year.

For example, a week may look like this:

  • Monday – Specialty clinic (Allergy, rheumatology, cardiology, neurology, endocrinology)

  • Tuesday – half day of subspecialty in morning and academic half day in afternoon

  • Wednesday – general pediatrics

  • Thursday – Post Call day

  • Friday – General pediatrics or subspecialty

This curriculum means changing your mindset frequently, watching your schedule, reading ahead, and being sure you don’t feel like a tourist.

What are the call requirements? Are they graduated in the more senior years? What will call be like?

Call will be 1 in 4 for the first 2 years, and 1 in 5 for the last 2 years. There will be one call free month per year. You are post call at 8:00 am. Call will be an identical experience to the call done by the general pediatricians. It will include covering the Emergency room for consultations, addressing ward problems, and covering Labour and Delivery for intermediate and high risk deliveries. Nighttime coverage also includes availability for dealing with emergent matters in the NICU and PICU.

Experiences with very high risk deliveries and intensive care medicine (experiences that would generally include a Neonatologist and/or Pediatric Intensivist) will also be part of the call experience. This will provide trainees with a unique general pediatric call experience that better represents the work of a community pediatrician.

Re: electives — will there be restrictions on how many electives one is allowed to complete at BCCH vs. in Victoria vs. elsewhere?

Elective time can be completed at other centres. Ongoing review of the trainees’ learning portfolio and mastery of specific competencies will take place throughout training; choices of electives and location of experiences can be reviewed on an ongoing basis as competencies are achieved, and learning goals set.

What are the opportunities for participating in rural or global health electives?

One month per year in the first three years will be in a smaller centre (eg Kelowna, Campbell River, Comox). Additional electives in other rural or international locations may be incorporated into third and fourth year elective time. The many connections of BC Children’s hospital and our faculty’s connections with other global opportunities will facilitate this.