When thinking about transitioning your healthcare practice to Canada, many international or foreign-trained physicians pursue alternate career paths as they begin the journey of applying for Canadian medical residency. This may include becoming a clinical or surgical assistant. Unlike medical residency, this is an alternate option in Alberta, for applicants with prior medical backgrounds looking to get started in clinical work.
This can be a great option as a new career, or acts as a transition to the ultimate goal of International Medical Graduate residency matching in North America via CaRMS or ERAS.
Working as a Clinical or Surgical Assistant with Alberta Health Services (AHS)
AHS provides alternative job opportunities for those International Medical Graduates (IMGs) who are not able to obtain independent licensure and/or are unable to obtain a residency position.
What is a CA?
A Clinical or Clinical/Surgical Assistant (CA) functions as a mid-level provider under the supervision and direction of physician supervisor(s) to provide acute care coverage in a variety of departments. Job duties often include examining the patient, documenting the history, conducting a complete physical examination, developing a treatment plan in consultation with the attending/supervising physician, writing appropriate orders, and entering these orders into the patient care electronic or manual system. If the CA also works in the surgical ward, the CA might also provide pre- and post-operative care as well as intra-operative surgical assistance. The CA is an important member of the collaborative care team in the provision of patient care.
The CA Pre-Screening Process
In order to apply for CA positions within AHS, IMGs must meet certain licensure requirements, therefore AHS provides a pre-screening process to interested individuals. Upon successful application, applicants will receive a letter indicating that they have passed the pre-screening process and allowing them to apply for any CA positions that may be posted on AHS Careers.
In order to apply for this pre-screening process, interested individuals must complete an application form and submit the necessary documentation. Please see the links below for more information.
- Pre-Screening Eligibility Overview
- Application Form and Guidelines
- Frequently Asked Questions