University of Calgary



  • Department Chair:Dr. Neil Collins, Dr. Eddy Lang
  • Program Director:Dr. Catherine Patocka
  • Associate/Assistant Program Director: Dr. Anjali Pandya
  • Research Director:Dr. Stephanie VandenBerg

Training Locations

Primary Hospital

Foothills Medical Centre

Secondary Hospital

Peter Lougheed Centre, Rockyview General Hospital, South Heath Campus


The Emergency Medicine Residency Program is five years in duration and is an integrated university-based program that involves multiple training sites. Residents are assessed on an ongoing basis by means of direct observation, daily shift evaluations, the annual national in-training exam and locally developed quarterly written and oral exams. Each resident meets with the program director to review their progress on a quarterly basis. The University of Calgary program has an extremely high success rate on the Royal College examinations.

Competency By Design (CBD) Curriculum (2023 cohort and beyond)

The Emergency Medicine Residency Program is five years in duration and is an integrated university-based program that involves the Foothills Hospital as a primary site, with four other Calgary hospital sites including the Alberta Children’s Hospital. Residents are evaluated on an ongoing basis by means of direct observation, as well as quarterly written and oral exams. The program director reviews resident progress on a quarterly basis. As a small program, residents work with a core group of experienced and enthusiastic attendings, and each year are paired with a longitudinal preceptor who develops their skills.


During the first year of training, Calgary residents complete their CBD Transition to Discipline and Foundations phases in an Emergency Medicine focused year. The year begins with an Adult EM rotation in July to meet the staff, feel at home, and complete an ultrasound training course. The objectives of the first year of the program are to build a solid foundation of knowledge and skills in Emergency Medicine. There are 7 adult EM blocks, 2 Pediatric EM blocks and 4 off service rotations (General Surgery, Anesthesia, Trauma Surgery and Internal Medicine). The PGY-1 year also has an additional introductory SIM curriculum that runs in addition to the bi-monthy Junior SIM. This EM focussed year allows our junior residents to feel comfortable managing patients in the ED and have solid relationships with staff and allied health. Our residents gain an appreciation of the breadth of EM in order to tailor their focus while off service.


The 2 years of “core” are the work-horse years of the program that involve broad-based training in a variety of disciplines, consistent with the broad-based knowledge base required in the specialty of Emergency Medicine. Core training includes Critical Care (Cardiac, Intensive, and Pediatric Intensive Care), Orthopedic Surgery, Plastic Surgery, Neurology/Stroke, Rural EM and EMS. One month of elective time is available in both the PGY-2 and PGY-3 years. The Royal College exam is now written in the PGY-4 year as well, which is a change from the previous curriculum that wrote in PGY-5.

PGY- 5 (Transition to Practice)

The final year of training is to develop consultant level skills and graded responsibility toward independent practice as well as pursuing our areas of interest. All PGY-5’s rotate through toxicology and Air Transport Medicine with the Alberta Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society (STARS). However, the remainder of the year allows considerable flexibility and extensive elective time to allow residents the opportunity to pursue areas of special interest within the discipline, which may include a concentrated period of training in a selected domain of Emergency Medicine. Calgary residents have pursued diverse areas of interest locally and abroad such as toxicology, medical education, stroke medicine, simulation, EMS, ultrasound, disaster medicine and sports medicine. In addition to assuming increasing responsibility for the management of patients in the ED, the chief residents have organizational, academic, and administrative responsibilities, which include the scheduling and teaching of more junior house staff and medical students. Our seniors enjoy true multidisciplinary senior SIM, performed in a trauma bay at the Foothills Hospital.


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