University of Toronto - Neurology - Pediatric - Toronto
The Paediatric Neurology residency training program at The Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto is a fully accredited program with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. The program is committed to excellence in training individuals for careers in both academic and community-based practice. We accept trainees via the CaRMS R-1 match into our 5-year residency program and via the CaRMS paediatric subspecialty match into our 3-year program. The program has implemented a Competency by Design based curriculum that employs frequent work-based assessments, coaching and feedback to encourage development of each of the CanMEDS competencies throughout the following training experiences:
This year consists of one block of paediatric neurology at SickKids, one block of community-based paediatric neurology, one block of paediatric neurosurgery, one block of research and 9 blocks of training in general paediatrics (paediatric wards, emergency paediatrics, community paediatrics, care of the newborn, infectious diseases, immunology/allergy/dermatology). Residents attend PeRLS — the paediatrics academic half day, and participate in a monthly longitudinal continuity clinic in general paediatric neurology.
This year consists of 5 blocks of general and subspecialty paediatrics, 5 blocks of paediatric neurology, and 3 blocks of adult neurology, which take place at St. Michael's Hospital, University Health Network and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. Residents participate in a twice-monthly longitudinal continuity clinic in general paediatric neurology.
PGY-3 to 5
The PGY 3 through 5 years will complete the requirements for the RCPSC accredited program in paediatric neurology. This training will consist of rotations in ambulatory and inpatient paediatric neurology services, as well as rotations in epilepsy, electroencephalography, critical care, neuromuscular disorders, developmental paediatrics, neonatal neurology, neuroradiology, neuropathology, stroke, neuroinflammatory disorders and additional rotations in inpatient and ambulatory adult neurology. Ample selective experiences are available in disciplines such as headache, neuro-ophthalmology, neurogenetics, neurometabolics, and movement disorders. Residents are encouraged to explore elective experiences outside of Toronto, including in global health. Residents follow their own patients longitudinally in a weekly continuity clinic in general paediatric neurology.
All trainees benefit from an extensive curriculum in paediatric neurology with dedicated teaching rounds on Wednesday and Thursday mornings. A weekly academic half day in the principles of neurology is organized in conjunction with the adult neurology training program at the University of Toronto.
Trainees pursue research projects throughout their training, which is supported by protected time, formal research mentorship and an annual research skills course. Trainees present their work at our annual Prichard research day.
The major foci of the clinical activities of the Division of Neurology at The Hospital for Sick Children are epilepsy, stroke, headache, neurometabolic diseases, neuromuscular diseases, sleep disorders, movement disorders, neuroinflammatory disorders, and neonatal neurology.
The Division has a Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada accredited training program in Paediatric Neurology as well as fellowship training programs in epilepsy, stroke, neuromuscular disorders, neuroinflammatory disorders, neonatal neurology, and neurocritical care.
The Division, in conjunction with the Program in Neuroscience and Mental Health and the Centre for Brain and Mental Health, supports active clinical and basic science research programs in epilepsy, neurophysiology, stroke, dyslexia, autism, attention deficit disorder/hyperactivity, neuromuscular disorders, neuroinflammatory disorders, fatty acid oxidation disorders and molecular and cellular neurobiology.
The Division currently comprises 15 full-time physicians, 7 part-time physicians, and 12 scientific staff.
Key information about the program and what makes the program unique
- Incomparable exposure to all subspecialties in neurology, including Epilepsy/EEG, Neuroinflammatory/demyelinating, Stroke, Neonatal Neurology, Neuromuscular, Neurometabolics, Neurogenetics, and Neurocritical care)
- Diverse group of trainees, excellent learning environment. Including CMG, IMG, VISA-sponsored trainees.
- Many formal and informal learning opportunities (eg neuro-ophtho rounds, pizza (neuroanatomy) rounds, professor rounds, teaching rounds, cEEG rounds, ICU rounds, etc
- Well connected with multiple mentors (e.g. career/wellness, research, continuity clinic mentor), providing us with a wide base of expertise.
- Working for a tertiary/quaternary hospital with wide-based coverage and good community connections
The people, the city, and the sites
- Toronto is a vibrant city with so much culture and diversity, translating into our social activities and hobbies (Active TO/ cycling/ lakefront, great food, variety of cultural activities, team sports on land and water)
- Our PGY1s would be happy to show you around to all their favourite ice-cream shops!
- This also translates into an incomparable variety of clinical cases (SickKids sees individuals from around the world, and has a large catchment area with people travelling far for our subspecialty services)
- We value work-life balance, wellness and team-work/ cohesion/ support.
- These values are shared by the UofT pediatrics program and adult neuro programs, which makes 1st and 2nd year equally special and enjoyable experiences.
Is there enough "general" neurology or mostly a focus on subspecialty care?
- One of the best things about training at SickKids is the breadth of exposure, which means that trainees are exposed to subspecialty care as well as plenty of opportunities to deal with general “bread and butter” neurology.
- Throughout all 5 years each resident participates in general neurology continuity clinic (1/month in PGY1 all the way up to 1/week in PGY3-5, with increasing responsibility for patient care).
- Community neurology rotation in PGY1 provides more exposure to general community neurology.
- Toronto has a wealth of community paediatric neurologists and there are plenty of opportunities for selective/elective or longitudinal placements.
Do we get community neurology exposure and are trainees supported in community or academic career paths?
- Community neurology placement in R1 with plenty of selective and elective time to pursue further community training in subsequent years.
- Two 2-week placements with different community neurologists.
- Lots of teaching in community neurology placements around career paths and how to set up a practice/billing.
- Career and wellness mentor for support in community or academic career paths.
How much didactic/ scheduled teaching is there?
- Monday: Pizza rounds (monthly)
- Tuesday: Paediatric Half day (PGY1)
- Wednesday: 8am paeds neuro teaching 10:30 Neuro grand rounds
- Thursday: 8 am Peds neuro teaching
- Friday: Adult neuro half day (PGY2-5)
- Weekends: International paeds neuro/neuroradiology teaching initiatives
How much opportunity is there for trainees to teach? Other opportunities for trainees:
- Teaching Scholars program
- QI Co-Learning curriculum
- Leadership certificates
- Research course certificate
- opportunities to be involved with medical student teaching
How much research is expected and what supports are in place for this?
- Research mentors are assigned,
- New research interests database to help facilitate projects
- half-day every block allotted for protected research time
- Prichard day every year to showcase our research