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Subspecialty Residency Training

Solid training tailored to individual career goals

NEW 2-year Subspecialty Residency Training Program (beginning July 1, 2018)

Palliative Medicine has been recognized as a subspecialty by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

Subspecialty training will enable residents to gain experience and expertise in pain and symptom management, and in the psycho-social and spiritual dimensions of caring for patients with advanced illness and their families. Upon completion of our program, you will be equipped with the skills to provide consultant palliative care services, and will have a foundation upon which to pursue an academic or research career in palliative medicine.

Training requirements

Please refer to the Royal College document:
Subspecialty Training Requirements In Adult Palliative Medicine [PDF]


The Dalhousie PGME office has approved the Division of Palliative Medicine to participate in the national application and selection process for one resident who meets both RCPSC and provincial eligibility criteria for the Medicine Subspecialty Match. The successful candidate would begin the subspecialty program in palliative medicine beginning July 2018.

The program accreditation application is pending review by the College in fall, 2017 aiming for new program accreditation status in the late spring of 2018.

Visa trainees are not considered at this time.

For any further questions about your eligibility, please contact Brittany Faulkner, Palliative Medicine Program Coordinator, at brittany.faulkner@nshealth.ca.

Application process

Information for the 2018 application process will be posted as soon as it is available here and on the CaRMS Medicine Subspecialty Match website imminently.


Enhanced Skills Program in Palliative Care for Family Physicians

The Department of Medicine's Division of Palliative Medicine and Department of Family Medicine at Dalhousie University currently offer a full-time one-year Enhanced Skills Family Medicine Residency postgraduate training program in Palliative Care leading to a Certificate of Added Competence in Palliative Care, accredited by the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC).

Positions are available every 1-2 years.

Our program provides excellent training in all aspects of palliative medicine and offers opportunities to create learning experiences tailored to individual career goals. Residents work with experienced multidisciplinary teams across a variety of care settings, in oncologic and non-oncologic patient populations, and with both adult and pediatric patients.

Training experience

The resident gains extensive knowledge, skills, and clinical experience in pain and symptom management, psycho-social and spiritual dimensions of caring for patients and families facing terminal illness. The program is based primarily in Halifax. Additionally, there will be up to three months of rotations gaining palliative care experience with one of the New Brunswick teams. The resident will gain experience in inpatient palliative care, inpatient hospital palliative medicine consultation services, as well as ambulatory and home based palliative care team service provision. Pediatric, geriatric and oncology experiences are also provided. A scholarly project will be completed during the one-year program, with the aim to present at a conference annually. A wide variety of elective options available, depending on the specific interests of the resident.

The full-time training period extends from July 1 to June 30 annually. Residents are remunerated at the PGY3 level according to the Maritime Resident Doctors Collective Agreement.


To be eligible for the Enhanced Skills program at Dalhousie you must be a:

  1. family practice trainee who will be successfully completing their two year residency, or
  2. practicing family physician

On completion of the program, the physician will be able to act as a valued resource to their practice community, and is eligible to receive a Certificate of Added Competence in Palliative Care from the CFPC.

PLEASE NOTE: The Dalhousie Palliative Medicine Enhanced Skills Program is funded solely for graduates of Family Medicine programs who have who qualify for licensure in Canada and who have achieved CCFP.

Application dates

Please check frequently – dates are subject to change.

Applications accepted starting September 1, 2017
Application deadline October 6, 2017
Interviews: Only those files approved for interview will be considered Date pending
likely early Nov 2017
Offer date December 7, 2017
Acceptance date December 15, 2017

Please contact Ms. Brittany Faulkner via brittany.faulkner@nshealth.ca with questions about the program for 2018-2019.

Required for application

To be considered for the Family Medicine Enhanced Skills Residency Training Program in Palliative Care, the following application materials are expected:

  • Completed application form
    (NOTE: The Post Graduate Office application process requires you to submit your medical school transcript, Family Medicine Program Director’s Letter or a Dean’s letter as one of your reference letters, proof of immigration status and language proficiency.)

    Please ensure: 
  1. you review the required application materials and obtain the required letters/documents as soon as possible.
  2. documents are submitted in word or PDF format. Your CV, personal letter and references (directly from referees) may be emailed.
    • Letter of Intent/Personal Statement of Interest

      [Save document as: LASTNAME.firstname.YACletter]

    • Curriculum Vitae

      [Save document as: LASTNAME.firstname.YACcv]

    • The names and contact information for your three Referees, and a brief statement about your relationship to them.

      [Save document as: LASTNAME.firstname.YACreferees]

    • Three confidential reference letters (this must include a letter from your Dean or Family Medicine Program or Site Director) sent directly from the Referee to brittany.faulkner@nshealth.ca.

Application deadline for the 2018 academic year is October 6, 2017. Once announced, applicants will receive an email confirming receipt of your application. If you did not receive an e-mail confirmation then we have not received your application. A selection committee will review all applications, and applicants will be notified of the selection decision by a specified date. An interview will be required, held either in person or by teleconference, with notification of acceptance shortly after.

All positions are dependent on funding approval from the Department of Family Medicine.


Interested physicians with questions about palliative care residency training should contact:

Erin Gorman Corsten, MD, MEd, CCFP (PC)
Palliative Medicine Residency Program Director
Room 309, Bethune Building
1276 South Park Street
Halifax, NS  B3H 2Y9
Phone: 902-473-1486
Fax: 902-473-6602
Email: erin.gormancorsten@nshealth.ca

Ms. Brittany Faulkner
Education Administrator
Email: brittany.faulkner@nshealth.ca