University of British Columbia - Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation - Vancouver


Program Director

Dr. Eric Hui


Program Administrator

Maria Canvin

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  • The Division has a strong tradition of teaching excellence. Faculty members have won Divisional, Departmental, and Provincial teaching awards. Education is emphasized over service.

  • Resident feedback is highly regarded. There is an annual resident retreat where residents have the opportunity to help structure the program.

  • The weekly academic half-day covers a structured curriculum that covers core Physiatry topics and concepts. Physical examination skills are covered during every academic half-day. Faculty actively participate in academic half-day, from supervising and providing talks to demonstrating "gold-standard" physical examination skills.

  • There is a weekly research half-day (in addition to academic half day) for all residents from PGY2 to PGY5. This greatly facilitates the ability to work on research projects in a longitudinal fashion.

  • Research is apriority within the Division. There is a Director of Research for the Division who meets three times per yearwith the residents as a group to provide guidance, and is readily accessible between major meetings for one-on-one guidance. A newly appointed Director for Resident Quality Improvement is guiding the development of a QI curriculum.

  • Resident interaction with staff is exceptionally collegial. Monthly journal clubs are held at the home of staff members, and there are regular non-academic social events including an annual resident-staff beach volleyball match and ski weekend in Whistler.

  • All domains of PM&R are well represented at UBC. There are 63 active members of the UBC Division of PM&R, as well as non-UBC physiatrists who welcome residents.

  • There are opportunities in the program to experience Physiatry throughout the lower mainland, including Vancouver and surrounding municipalities, Vancouver Island, smaller communities in BC and in the Yukon Territory. All residents attend week-long outreach clinics in Whitehorse during their training.

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UBC PM&R is a 5 year, Royal College accredited residency training program in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. We provide a comprehensive training program to foster the development of skills, attitudes, and knowledge necessary for our residents to begin a rewarding career in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the completion of their training. At the core of the UBC PM&R program is a complete training experience to ensure that the defining attributes and expertise of a Physiatrist are fully evident in our graduates while tailoring the individual resident's training across subspecialty areas of practice and academic pursuits according to their goals and interests. The UBC PM&R residency program is part of the Division of PM&R, which identifies the mission of "[creating] a consortium in which our expertise in clinical service delivery, teaching and research is shared with other rehabilitation stakeholders (including our academic partners, government, hospital and regional administrations, paying agencies, patients and the public) to improve the quality and effectiveness of rehabilitation services in British Columbia."


How many residents are in the program?

We currently have 10 residents. We accept two residents per year. Numbers vary depending on transfers into the program from other programs, maternity leaves, etc.

What is the main training site?

GF Strong Rehab Centre is a free-standing rehabilitation facility located in Vancouver. It is the "home-base" for the PM&R residents, and is the training site for many of the core PM&R rotations. The resident office/room is based here as are most academic activities.

Are there opportunities for community-based electives?

Residents travel to Whitehorse with a staff physiatrist twice during their residency for one week outreach clinics timed throughout the year and have the option of going more often. PGY5 residents attend a Fraser Health Authority rotation in New Westminster whereby they function in the role of a general physiatrist in the community running both inpatient rehabilitation wards as well as a busy outpatient practice. There is a mandatory month long Orthotics and Prosthetics rotation in Victoria. Residents are otherwise strongly encouraged to attend both outpatient clinics in the community as well as spend time with physiatrists on smaller inpatient rehabilitation wards in community hospitals. We have strong links with physiatrists throughout the lower mainland of British columbia as well as in Kelowna, Kamloops, Victoria and Nanaimo.

Are electives outside of B.C. possible?

Several of our residents have arranged electives abroad. Recent electives have included the USA and Nepal, as well as across Canada.

What is the average number of patients a resident would follow on the ward?

Residents on an in-patient Rehab rotation typically carry 6 to 12 patients depending on their level of training.

What are the on-call responsibilities?

Residents are on-call as required for each service they rotate with. In B.C., the maximum call responsibility is 1 in 4 for in-house call, and 1 in 3 for home-call. While on GF Strong-based rotations, residents are typically on-call for one week per month from home. A staff physiatrist is on call with the resident at all times and residents are encouraged to contact staff with questions or for help.

What are some of the resources available?

The residents' room has a library of key PM&R textbooks, as well as three computers with internet access. Residents have access to e-journals as well as the UBC library electronic resources. Residents have an annual allowance of $1000 for educational expenses. They also receive additional funding to attend the national PM&R comprehensive review course, and may be able to access additional funds for presentation of research projects and for out of town electives within BC, such as specialized funding from the Interior Health Authority for rotations in Kamloops.

What are the expectations for resident research?

Residents are expected to have developed a research question by their PGY-2 year, conducted a review of the literature and an essay to either the CAPM&R or GF Strong Annual Rehabilitation Research Day and completed the research project by the end of residency. Projects can vary in duration from 1 to 4 years. Each project is supervised by an approved preceptor from the University of B.C. Each resident is expected to present his/her research project at the annual Rehabilitation Research Day, and residents are encouraged to present at the Department of Medicine Research day and at a national level conference. Projects should be completed and ready for publication and/or presentation by the end of the residency program.

Is it possible to work towards a Masters degree during residency?

Recent residents have enrolled in and completed Masters of Medical Education and Masters of Health Care and Epidemiology programs during their residency training.

Will I ever get out of the hospital?

Absolutely! The importance of an active, healthy lifestyle is emphasized in Vancouver. Physiatrists recognize and value life-work balance. Many residents love working in B.C. because of the year-round opportunities to enjoy hiking, running, tennis, beach volleyball, skiing, yoga, surfing, boating, or just relaxing in the mild climate.

Do I need to have a car?

Not necessarily. Most of the teaching hospitals (GFS, Vancouver General Hospital, St. Paul's Hospital, UBC hospital and BC Children's hospital) are connected by interhospital shuttle and accessible by public transit. Other Vancouver area hospitals are also easily accessible by public transit. Vancouver is an excellent city for cycling and there are car-share programs available in the city.