General Objectives of Specialty Training in Psychiatry (classic program)


On completion of training, residents in psychiatry will have demonstrated the ability to assume the role of consultant in the specialty. This will require them to:

  • Demonstrate effective mastery of the theoretical knowledge of the specialty, including the relevant aspects of basic medical and social sciences and of the law as it relates to the practice of psychiatry.
  • Demonstrate effective skill in the use of an integrated biological, psychological and social model in the diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation and prevention of mental disorders in individuals of all ages.
  • Demonstrate effective communication ability with patients, families, medical colleagues and other health care professionals.
  • Demonstrate the capacity to maintain complete and accurate health records.
  • Demonstrate attitudes which reflect an ability to work effectively and ethically on an independent basis and/or as a member of a multidisciplinary team, and which are founded on respect for and sensitivity to the patient, his/her family and the community.
  • Demonstrate an ability to work effectively and efficiently in a health care organization and to use information technology to optimize patient care, long-term learning and other activities.
  • Demonstrate the ability to identify important determinants of mental health.
  • Demonstrate the capacity to contribute effectively to improved patients and communities health and to recognize key issues and respond where advocacy is appropriate.
  • Demonstrate the ability to critically assess the relevance and significance of the literature and research as it applies to the practice and study of psychiatry.

CanMEDS competencies

A. Medical Expert / Clinical Decision Maker

Psychiatrists integrate medical knowledge, clinical skills, and professional attitudes in their provision of patient centered care across the life span – including children, adolescents, adults and the elderly, and in a number of settings – including hospital inpatient, outpatient and community settings. Medical Expert is the central physician role defining the physician’s clinical scope of practice.

  • Practise medicine within their defined scope of practice and expertise
  • Perform a patient-centred clinical assessment and establish a management plan
  • Plan and perform procedures and therapies for the purpose of assessment and/or management.
  • Establish plans for ongoing care and, when appropriate, timely consultation
  • Actively contribute, as an individual and as a member of a team providing care, to the continuous improvement of health care quality and patient safety.

B. Communicator

  • Establish professional therapeutic relationships with patients and their families
  • Elicit and synthesize accurate and relevant information, incorporating the perspectives of patients and their families
  • Share health care information and treatment plans with patients and their families
  • Engage patients and their families in developing plans that reflect the patient’s health care needs and goals
  • Document and share written and electronic information about the medical encounter to optimize clinical decision-making, patient safety, confidentiality, and privacy

C. Collaborator

  • Work effectively with physicians and other colleagues in the health care professions.
  • Work with physicians and other colleagues in the health care professions to promote understanding, manage differences, and resolve conflicts.
  • Hand over the care of a patient to another health care professional to facilitate continuity of safe patient care

D. Leader

  • Contribute to the improvement of health care delivery in teams, organizations, and systems
  • Engage in the stewardship of health care resources
  • Demonstrate leadership in professional practice
  • Manage career planning, finances, and health human resources in a practice

E. Health Advocate

  • Respond to an individual patient’s health needs by advocating with the patient within and beyond the clinical environment
  • Respond to the needs of the communities or populations they serve by advocating with them for system-level change in a socially accountable manner.

F. Scholar

  • Engage in the continuous enhancement of their professional activities through ongoing learning
  • Teach students, residents, the public, and other health care professionals
  • Integrate best available evidence into practice
  • Contribute to the creation and dissemination of knowledge and practices applicable to health

G. Professional

  • Demonstrate a commitment to patients by applying best practices and adhering to high ethical standards
  • Demonstrate a commitment to society by recognizing and responding to societal expectations in health care
  • Demonstrate a commitment to the profession by adhering to standards and participating in physician-led regulation
  • Demonstrate a commitment to physician health and well-being to foster optimal patient care
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