Facing the Workforce Challenge in Canada

Bas Masri, MD

Canada faces an unprecedented oversupply of orthopaedic surgery graduates, many of whom can only find precarious work as locum tenens or are forced to look for work offshore. Many factors contribute to the situation. Chief among them, though, are austerity measures initiated by provincial health ministries that have effectively cancelled a projected expansion of human health resources in general and orthopaedic resources in particular.

It’s not as though Canada does not need these new surgeons. Demand for orthopaedic services is greater than ever. Indeed, early in the last decade, governments and universities went to a great deal of trouble and expense to increase orthopaedic residency positions by about 90 percent.

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