We would like to acknowledge that the land on which we provide care is the traditional territory of the QayQayt and Kwikwetlem First Nations.
The UBC Emergency Medicine Fraser program is a five-year training program satisfying the Royal College requirements for Emergency Medicine. We accept two to three residents per year out of the 14 residents across the UBC program. Residents are based out of Royal Columbian Hospital (RCH) in New Westminster, BC, with rotations in other Fraser Hospitals such as Surrey Memorial Hospital (SMH) and Eagle Ridge Hospital (ERH). Like all residents in the UBC program, Fraser residents also complete rotations at BC Children’s Hospital, Vancouver General Hospital… and pretty much anywhere else they like.
By population, Fraser Health is the biggest health authority in the province and is within the Greater Vancouver area. The Fraser program is based out of Royal Columbian Hospital, a busy tertiary referral centre and level 1 trauma centre with a community feel. The Fraser program boasts a faculty with diverse interests and a strong track record of excellence in teaching in a full-service hospital with amazing pathology!
- RCH is a busy tertiary level I trauma centre and referral centre. We have the benefits of working at a high volume, high acuity centre while still boasting a tight-knit feel and a history of excellent clinical teaching.
- Royal Columbian is only 30 minutes from downtown Vancouver, and easily is accessible to the amenities and lifestyle offered by the city and surrounding mountains and water.
- While living and working in the Greater Vancouver area, the Fraser group benefits from close links with residents in the Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) program. You will share academic days, journal clubs and good times, and find a bigger support network when you need it.
- Monthly high-fidelity simulation covering the spectrum of emergency medicine (pediatrics, environmental medicine, toxicology, trauma, airway, and more). We often recruit faculty with areas of specialization to help lead the sessions.
- As an R1, you will start with two months of EM at RCH and a month of pediatric EM at Surrey Memorial Hospital, a high-volume ED with a dedicated peds stream.
- Dedicated emergency ultrasound block early in first year coupled with ongoing longitudinal training throughout residency will make you an expert.
- With fewer learners at RCH, you will be mentored from the ground up and have your learning experience protected. Being one of two FRCPC Royal College Programs formally based at RCH, there is less competition for procedures and experiences.
Royal Columbian Hospital
RCH is a 440 bed hospital that sees approximately 80,000 ED visits a year, 12,000 trauma patients and the most air ambulance patients in BC. As a level I trauma centre, it is no surprise that ER residents from across BC come to RCH for their trauma blocks. In fact, it’s the only centre where you can undertake a trauma fellowship as an ER resident in BC! As the only hospital in BC that is full service to any patient population (including kids and obstetrics), your ER training is for whatever comes through the door. RCH is Fraser Health’s designated referral centre for trauma, cardiac surgery, cardiac cath lab, neurosurgery, ECMO, interventional radiology, interventional stroke care, high-risk maternity and neonatal intensive care. Despite being a well-established teaching hospital, RCH has not lost its community feel. Off-service blocks are often one-on-one with a staff expert and you will therefore know all of your consultants on a first-name basis when working ER. The legendary residents lounge has a gym, television, a foosball table and a fridge stocked with tons of free food (interns are known to make ice cream sundaes and grilled cheese sandwiches routinely).
Surrey Memorial Hospital
SMH is the other large hospital within Fraser Health. SMH is the busiest emergency department in BC, seeing more than 150,000 emergency medicine visits per year including the largest pediatric volume seen in BC within its dedicated pediatric emergency department. Although not a trauma centre, SMH has a very busy and very high acuity centre with a state-of-the-art ED and strong teaching faculty.
Like all residents in the UBC program, you will benefit from the amazing array of pathology and practise at sites across the province. You will do rotations at VGH in the emerg, in the ICU and most choose electives in CCU at VGH or St. Paul’s Hospital. Many residents also choose to do EM rotations in Victoria and in Kelowna, and often at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver. Our residents are also expected to do EM rotations at community sites of their choice. Over the years, Fraser residents have been supported for EM blocks in Nanaimo, Comox, Nelson, Revelstoke, Whistler, Yellowknife, and internationally.
Your residency is flexible and designed to balance program requirements with your goals. We follow the progression laid out by the Royal College CBME program.
Transition to discipline: Blocks 1 – 3
Emergency Medicine (RCH): 2 blocks
Pediatric EM (SMH): 1 block
Foundations of discipline: Blocks 4-13
Emergency Medicine: 3 blocks
Emergency Ultrasound: 1 block
Obstetrics / Gynecology: 1 block
General Surgery: 1 block
Internal Medicine CTU: 1 block
Psychiatric Emergency: 1 block
Intensive Care: 1 block
Trauma: 1 block
PGY 2 to 4: Core of Discipline: This stage is flexible depending on your learning / career goals.
Emergency Medicine, including community EM: approximately 17 blocks
Pediatric EM (SMH / BCCH): approximately 4 blocks
Research Methodology (NERD): 1 block
Pre-Hospital Care: 1 block
Cardiology / CCU: 1-2 blocks
Neurology / Stroke: 1 block
Anesthesia: 1-2 blocks
Toxicology: 1 block
Orthopedics: 1 block
Senior ICU (VGH): 2 blocks
Pediatric ICU (BCCH): 1 block
The options for electives are endless. In the last few years our residents have done electives in: addictions, palliative care, sports medicine, wilderness medicine, hyperbarics, difficult airway, community EM, trauma, toxicology and many more.
PGY 5: Transition to Practice
Residents must complete an ACE (area of concentrated expertise), which should be at least 6 months, but may be longer. PGY-5 residents typically split their “ACE” time with blocks in EM and Pediatric EM. As a PGY-5 resident, you will receive targeted teaching to help you transition to independent practice as an emergency specialist. You will also be expected to take on a greater role in teaching, both at the bedside, in the classroom and in simulation.
Welcome to Fraser, BC!
RCH is conveniently located within a 25-minute drive, 25-minute SkyTrain, or 50-minute bike lane ride from Vancouver. This means you will never be too far from the hospital, no matter where you live.
New Westminster is the oldest city in Western Canada at the centre of the largest health authority in British Columbia. If you choose to live in New West, you will benefit from a massive decrease in your cost of living, a considerable increase in living space, and almost always a waterfront view.
The lower mainland of British Columbia has world-class outdoor recreation. You can ski in Whistler, hike or mountain bike the North Shore, kite-board or kayak the ocean inlets and more – all within the same small radius. Fraser residents cycle to work year round on protected trails and commute to the mountains all winter for world class skiing. We have whatever it is you do right here.
Food & Drink
There are 2,932 active restaurants in Vancouver and 1,825 days of residency in the FRCPC program. You will not get bored. What about while on shift at RCH? In addition to the usual cafeteria/standard in-hospital Tim Hortons, next door you will find Sushi, Thai, FreshPrep, Starbucks, Browns, etc. to ensure the hardest decision on-call is selecting take-out. Don’t forget the resident lounge though, where one of our own has been eating (for free) somewhat exclusively for several years straight. After a shift, take the train a few short stops to the Port Moody Ale Trail for the outdoor network of craft breweries frequented as a post-shift debrief on the way home.
“I love working at RCH because of the variety and acuity of patient presentations, including trauma and pediatrics, as well as the awesome team we work with. The emerg group of physicians, nurses, pharmacists and staff are fantastic, it has the benefit of being an academic site, and we have great relationships with consultants. It has a truly unique feel!” – Dr. Samantha Jang-Stewart
“RCH has no shortage of acuity and interesting pathology, allowing for full spectrum emergency practice that includes trauma, peds, cardiac, neuro, obgyn and more, all in one place. I chose to work at RCH because of the collegial culture between my fellow emergency physicians and our consultants. I was well supported in starting up my practice and was given lots of opportunities to utilize the skills and knowledge I gained with my area of special interest. I am privileged to work with learners of all stages, ranging from medical students to off-service residents to senior emergency residents. RCH is the place to be!” – Dr. Ken Chan
“RCH is a great place to work because although it is a tertiary care centre, it retains a community hospital feel. As such, you get to be super hands on and become an expert in all things emergency medicine including but not limited to: traumas, resuscitations, reductions, acute on chronic abdominal pain, and non-specific neurologic symptoms in young, healthy people.” – Dr. Margaret Zhang
“The clinical practice as an emergency physician at RCH is challenging and full scope. During a major trauma resuscitation you look around the room for help and it is a bunch of colleagues and friends who are there with you.” – Dr. John Taylor (emergency physician and Trauma Team Leader)
“Because the Fraser Health Authority has one of the largest populations in Canada (2 million), the sickest patients are funnelled to RCH which is the tertiary referral center in the FHA. I have worked at RCH most of my career and consider myself fortunate to have seen a huge volume of very interesting pathology. What I have most treasured is our team whom I feel is like a second family.” – Dr. Joe Haegert
“The Fraser program was our home as residents for the past five years. We began this program together with the combined intelligence of one resident, luckily we learned a few things in R5/R6 (Covid Cohort) and have become two independent staff physicians. While the ridiculous resuscitations are unparalleled, what really makes this program special is the relationships. Not only is the residency program tight-knit, but as a resident, you are part of the emergency department family from day one. Now in the early stages of our staff careers, we have chosen to stay and work here for the same reasons: exciting medicine, great academic opportunities, and a really fun work environment. The residency program is integrated into everything this department does and whether you are on emerg or off service you feel at home and get involved in everything.” – Dr. Ben Millar & Kevin O’Riordan
“RCH is a wonderful place to work as there is continuous exposure to high-volume, high-acuity emergency medicine. As a new attending physician it was important to me to continue to develop clinical expertise in full-scope emergency medicine including trauma, critical care, paediatrics and OB. RCH affords this unique opportunity, surrounded by supportive consultants and an Emergency Department team that always has your back.” – Dr. Chantal McFetridge
Ateshia likes exploring and taking the scenic route and she held true to that in her journey to becoming an EM resident. Born and raised in rural BC, Ateshia was homeschooled for the majority of her primary and secondary education. She came to Vancouver to celebrate Y2k and found that city life was way more […]
Chris grew up in Montreal, Irish-blooded and English-speaking. He later drifted to southwestern Ontario for an undergrad in Kinesiology at Western, an experience which, to this day, he remembers almost nothing about. Unsurprisingly, his lacklustre academic performance left him rejected from his first adult job application: collecting parking-lot shopping carts. His downward trajectory took him […]
Hailing from the end of a loooong dirt road in rural Ontario, Emily spent her youth galloping through open meadows on horseback and sailing off into glowing eastern sunsets. She expanded her horizons by winter, hockey stick in hand, rocking her opponents into the boards on just about every rink in the province and earning […]
Hannah is First Nations (Nlaka’pamux and Secwepemc) from Ashcroft, BC. She completed an undergrad in Health Sciences at SFU and with the motto “from cell to society,” Hannah is pretty invested social determinants of health and their manifestations in the Emergency Department. She went to UBC for medicine, and completed an Integrated Community Clerkship in […]
Inderdeep was born and raised in cold and snowy Edmonton. She completed her undergrad in Psychology and Bio Sci and worked on community advocacy throughout her medical school career. She co-founded the Bag Half Full program during the pandemic to delivery groceries to vulnerable community members. Passionate for mental health, she also co-founded a Peer […]
Jen-Ai has been enjoying beautiful BC for the last 9 years, ever since a fateful phone call from UBC altered her life path. Offered a full scholarship to UBC, this small-town Ontarian girl would eventually forgo her childhood dreams of becoming a long-haul truck driver, to attend UBC medical school. For over a decade, Jen-Ai […]
Jessica was born in South India and spent her early childhood in the UK and the Middle East before finally settling in Maple Ridge, BC. It’s safe to say that the travel bug got to her at a young age. She would find any and every excuse to explore, mostly through the avenue of attending […]
Kate grew up in Kelowna, spending her days playing in the mountains and water. At a young age, she fell in love with cross-country skiing, dogs, and pharmacology. These loves have all stood the test of time. She moved to Edmonton to complete a BSc in Pharmacology at the University of Alberta, then headed south […]
Recovering from a brief stint in management consulting, Parker has exchanged east coast corporate America for west coast med school and residency. Although he sometimes misses the jet-set glamour of business travel, he has come to love the clamour and bustle of a busy emergency department. A fifth generation Vancouverite, Parker has bounced around, living […]
Born at Royal Columbian, raised in Coquitlam, legend has it Paul was destined for the Fraser Emergency Medicine program from the very beginning. Cast overseas to the east of France, Paul returned to Canada with a first grader’s command of the French language. To be fair, he was six at the time and is now […]
Somehow not ashamed to admit that he came from Onterrible, or that he cheers for the Leafs, Seb grew up in Etobicoke, where he spent the majority of his childhood avoiding getting his drivers license and competing in Olympic-level archery. Seb then spent a couple years as a carpenters apprentice which is where he fell […]
Royal Columbian Hospital offers two or four week electives for medical students in their final year that provides the opportunity to gain exposure and competence in managing a variety of clinical presentations in a busy emergency department. Students will work one-on-one with enthusiastic physicians who establish an exceptional learning environment and provide an appropriate level of independence. Students will have the opportunity to participate in emergency procedures such as suturing, orthopedic reductions, casting, intubation, central lines, chest tube placement and trauma management. They will also have the opportunity to interact with EM residents who will have dedicated teaching shifts with students. Additional learning opportunities include involvement in weekly academic days with the EM residents, monthly EM journal clubs, weekly grand rounds, and simulation sessions which visiting students are welcome to attend.
Applications for electives can be made through the UBC application system.
Applications for electives are submitted online via the One45 system. There are deadline application dates for each elective block, which must be approved by the elective organizer for successful placement. If you were unable to get an elective at RCH and are interested in our Fraser EM program, we are happy for you to contact us to hear more about the program/set up a shadow shift.
For junior medical students, you may contact us directly to arrange a few shadow shifts.
For general inquiries, please contact our program admin:
Fraser Program Coordinator
For undergraduate or medical student inquiries, please contact:
Dr. Dan Wong, Assistant Education Director and Undergrad DSSL
Interested in speaking to one of our Fraser residents? Please contact: