Ease into Practice Stress- and Hassle-free
Below is all you need to know to set you on your path to family practice. Please note this timeline provided is simply a rough guideline for you to follow and may be used in helping organize next steps.
- Can sit the exam in the final six months prior to completing residency training
- Must be a CFPC resident member to apply for the CFPC exam: http://www.cfpc.ca/FMExam/
- You must have completed a minimum of 12 months of postgraduate clinical medical training (PGT) or osteopathic postgraduate training, or will be completing it by the following deadline:
- On or before June 30 for the May exam of the same calendar year
- On or before December 31 for the October exam of the same calendar year
- Register for the LMCC exam through physiciansapply.ca
- ALLOW 120 DAYS
- Usually, the people who are going to hire you will require you to have hospital privileges (eg. low risk obstetrics, hospitalist, emergency medicine)
- Will also need this if you are going to be working at specialized sites in the community, such clinical teaching sites, long term care facilities
- CONTACT: Medical Affairs Office for your zone. See list for the different zones at the bottom of this page.
- Alternatively, you can contact the Department of Family Medicine in your region
- Here is a link to a document that explains more about this process:
- You will likely need a security check, the Medical Affairs office will give you more information about this. Here is a link for more information about the security check:
- This document from AHS has more information about credentialing and clinical privileges:
- ALLOW 90 DAYS, longer if you are a graduate of an international training program
- Through the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta (CPSA)
- Can start the paperwork 6 months in advance
- Need to apply for an Eligibility Review. This may take 6 weeks before approval is granted for On-Line Application.
- For the On-Line Application, you will need 3 references, and notarized copy of medical degree
- In June: after confirmation of successful completion of CFPC & LMCC exams (sent directly to CPSA from CFPC), you must complete “Registration Electronic Appointment (eAppointment)”. This is where payment happens.
- CPSA will contact you through email. Please make sure you give them an email address that is regularly checked.
- If you have PO box or a regular clinic, consider putting this down as your public address: this is the address anyone can find you through Doctor Search. Pay attention that you don’t put your personal address or phone number on the public information section.
- Can also contact CPSA registration assistants for help
- Ph. 780-969-4924 or 1-800-320-8624 ext 4924 (in Alberta)
- Required for privileges
- Complete the “Transitioning to Practice” form that is hyperlinked on this page:
- AHS requires that all physicians obtain and maintain CMPA membership
- For general information, refer to – https://www.cmpa-acpm.ca/en/membership/transitioning-to-practice
- Or phone: 1-800-267-6522
- You will need a Practitioner Identification Number (PracID#) in order to claim payment or make referrals – this is done through Alberta health: https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/medstaff/page7089.aspx
- Direct Link to Practitioner Information From – https://cfr.forms.gov.ab.ca/form/ahc0912.pdf
- This will require CPSA licence number, so this will be one of the last things you do.
- You also need to apply for a Business Arrangement (BA) Number
- This is an agreement with Alberta Health to establish the arrangement for payment
- You will often need a BA number for each practice site. This can get confusing. The easiest way to figure this out is to contact whoever hired you and they can guide you through what needs to be filled out.
- If you end up incorporating, you will need a new BA number and will need to fill out this “Organization Information” form:
- Will need to have your CPSA licence # and PracID# prior to applying, so it will be one of the last things you do
- Direct link to form – https://www.wcb.ab.ca/assets/pdfs/providers/C724.pdf
- You will need this to make any WCB submissions, and also to get paid by WCB
- For more information contact: WCB Medical Aid Department
- Ph. 1-866-922-9221
- Established through the CPSA to monitor the use of certain drugs (ie. narcotics, stimulants, etc). This includes a special prescribing pad for controlled substances that you have to order through this program.
- You will need a CPSA licence number to apply.
- To contact the TPP:
- Ph. 780-423-4764 or 1-800-561-3899 ext 4762 (in Alberta)
Practice Management Considerations
- do this before CPSA registration, especially if you do not have a practice address yet
- this can be your public address where anyone can find on you on the CPSA Doctor Search
- Start with finding an accountant – they can recommended a lawyer.
- The lawyer will help you with completing the application for a Professional Corporation (PC).
- When all that is completed, you will need to apply for a corporate bank account and credit card.
- You can charge application fees (eg CPSA registration fees, CMPA fees, AMA fees) to your PC account.
- HOWEVER, it may take a few weeks/months before you are paid, depending on how prompt the billing gets done at your sites, so have a backup plan of how to pay off that first credit card bill
- MD Financial can be a good resource for some direction. Alternatively, ask your preceptors or mentors who they work with.
*NOTE: incorporation is not mandatory to the transition to practice. It may be a consideration for individuals who are at least one year (or several years) into practice.
- consider upgrade or buy-into disability insurance
Student Line of Credit (LOC):
- if not incorporated, extend your student LOC if you can, in anticipation of the delay in your first paycheck
Alberta Medical Association (AMA):
- Membership is optional
- Can take advantage of the First Year in Practice special membership rate
- Benefits include:
- Medical liability reimbursement – reimburses a portion of your CMPA fees
- CME reimbursement
- Retention benefits in some cases
- Can be a great resource for helping you get set up Here is a link to see who the physician recruiter is for your zone.
Helpful Alberta Health Services Contacts
There are three Privileging Assistants who process Medical Staff Applications and Change Requests for Appointments and Privileging. They are divided amongst areas within the North Zone. To eliminate missed emails, documentation and notification, we use one central email address and from there the request will get dispersed accordingly. Nz.email@example.com.
Sabrina Crowe, Fort McMurray
Phone: (780) 788.1721
Fax: (780) 788-1744
Darlene Little, Grande Prairie
Phone: (780) 357-2564
Fax: (780) 538-7277
Kylie Pilfold, Grande Prairie
Phone: (780) 357-2564
Privileging Manager is Deborah Whetstone.
Phone: (780)830-2825 Deborah.Whetstone@albertahealthservices.ca
Ashley Turlione, Privileging Assistant for the Departments of Family Medicine / Emergency Medicine
Phone: (780) 735-0758
Debbie Velsink, Privileging Assistant For the Departments of: Addiction & Mental Health/ Emergency Medicine/Diagnostic Imaging/Corrections Health(Physicians)/ Lab Medicine & Pathology Medical Affairs, Edmonton Zone
Phone: (780) 735-0759
There are Two Privileging Specialist who process Medical Staff Applications and Change Requests for Appointments and Privileging and the work is divided between them. To eliminate missed emails, documentation and notification, we use one central email address and from there the request will get dispersed accordingly.
Lorie A. MacDonald Medical Staff Program Assistant Medical Affairs, Calgary Zone
Ph#: (403) 943-0315 firstname.lastname@example.org
Bonnie Joseph, Analyst Appointments & Credentials Medical Affairs, Calgary Zone
Ph#: (403) 910-2985 email@example.com
Deb Morgan Administrative Assistant/ South Zone-Medical Affairs Medicine Hat Regional Hospital
Ph#: (403) 502-8648 Ext. 2426 Debbie.Morgan@albertahealthservices.ca
Peggy Fletcher Executive Assistant/ South Zone-Medical Affairs Chinook Regional Hospital – Lethbridge
Ph#: (403) 388-6709 firstname.lastname@example.org