careers.novascotia.ca

Specialist Physicians

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NOC:3111
Occupation:Specialist Physicians
Category:Health

About the job

Nature of work:

Specialists Physicians have an in-depth knowledge and highly specialized skills in a specific medical field. There are many specialties, which can be broadly grouped into clinical medicine, laboratory medicine, and surgery. This group includes residents training to become specialist physicians. Specialists in clinical medicine diagnose and treat diseases and physiological or psychiatric disorders and act as consultants to other physicians. Specialists in laboratory medicine study the nature, cause and development of diseases in humans. Specialists in surgery perform and supervise surgical procedures. Specialists in clinical medicine usually work in private practice or in a hospital while those in laboratory medicine and in surgery usually work in hospitals.

Job duties:
Specialists in clinical medicine perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Diagnose and treat diseases and physiological or psychiatric disorders.
  • Order laboratory tests, X-rays and other diagnostic procedures.
  • Prescribe medication and treatment and refer patients for surgery.
  • Act as consultants to other physicians.
  • May conduct medical research.
Specialists in laboratory medicine perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Study the nature, cause and development of diseases in humans and the structural and functional changes caused by diseases.
  • Conduct microscopic and chemical analyses of laboratory samples and specimens.
  • Supervise laboratory activities.
  • Act as consultants to other physicians.
Specialists in surgery perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Assess patients' diseases or disorders to determine appropriate surgical procedures.
  • Perform and supervise surgical procedures to correct physical abnormalities and deficiencies and repair injuries.
  • Act as consultants to other physicians.
Sample job titles:
  • anesthesiologist
  • cardiologist
  • dermatologist
  • emergency physician
  • medical examiner
  • neurologist
  • obstetrician-gynecologist
  • opthalmologist
  • pediatrician
  • plastic surgeon
  • psychiatrist
  • radiologist
  • specialist physician
  • surgeon
  • urologist
Skills:

Compassion, sensitivity, and a desire to help people are important. Physicians must take final responsibility for their decisions and the effects they have on patients' lives. Therefore, emotional stability, ethics, maturity, and good judgement are essential. Excellent interpersonal and communication skills are important. You should be able to inspire confidence and put people at ease. You must be willing to continually update your knowledge and skills. Good health and stamina may be needed, as physicians often work long hours.

Job requirements:
Specialist physicians:
  • A Bachelor of Science degree.
  • Graduation from an approved medical school and specific specialty training are required.
  • Completion of the certifying examinations of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and licensing by the provincial or territorial licensing authority are required.
Specialists in clinical medicine:
  • Four to five years of specialty residency training are required.
  • Two years of subspecialty training may also be required.
Specialists in laboratory medicine:
  • Four to five years of specialty residency training are required.
Specialists in surgery:
  • Five to six years of specialty residency training are required.
  • Two years of subspecialty training may also be required.
Other considerations:

Most physicians are self-employed and administer their services through private practices. Most physicians are paid by fee-for-service, so earnings depend upon the fees paid by the government for various services and the number of patients served. Some physicians are paid through alternative funding plans. Progression to management positions, such as director of laboratory medicine or chief of surgery, is possible with experience.

Labour Market Information

Work Prospects:Good

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “good”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is better than average when compared to other occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia, with employment around 1,100. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow moderately over the next few years, which will likely provide some additional opportunities for employment. With a small percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are not expected to be a major contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Specialist Physicians most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions. Also, a large percentage of the workforce is self-employed, which should be an important consideration for those thinking about employment in the occupation.

The median employment income for 47% of Specialist Physicians who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $99,911. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

OccupationEstimated employment in 2018Estimated change in employment between 2017 and 2019Estimated openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019Estimated rate of unemployment in 2018 Estimated hourly earnings in 2015 (learn more)Estimated annual earnings in 2015
Specialist Physicians1,285Moderate growth205Low
Minimum: $12.24
Median: $30.05
Maximum: $43.96
Minimum: $11,387
Median: $101,840
Maximum: $234,378
Occupations in Health36,515Strong growth4,385Low
Minimum: $16.38
Median: $25.50
Maximum: $41.00
Minimum: $10,740
Median: $43,853
Maximum: $88,944
Specialist PhysiciansCompared to: Occupations in Health
Percent employed full-time92%77%
Percent self-employed80%10%
Where will I likely work?
Area of EmploymentSpecialist PhysiciansCompared to: All NS Occupations
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Southern6%x12%$30,581
Northern9%$152,71516%$33,660
Cape Breton9%x13%$32,974
Halifax69%$104,28847%$41,209
Annapolis Valley6%x13%$32,958
What are the workers like?
AgeSpecialist PhysiciansCompared to: All Health
% Employed% Employed
15-24N/A1%
25-3420%15%
35-4434%28%
45-5419%31%
55-6416%20%
65+13%5%
Median Age4844
GenderSpecialist PhysiciansCompared to: Occupations in Health
% Employed% Employed
Female36%84%
Male64%16%
EducationSpecialist PhysiciansCompared to: All Health
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Less than high schoolN/Ax1.1%$27,581
High schoolN/Ax6.9%$24,119
Trades certificateN/Ax5.0%$31,728
College certificate or diplomaN/Ax39.4%$36,693
University certificate or diplomaN/Ax4.8%$50,769
Bachelor's degree3.2%$10,94127.6%$57,186
University advanced certificate or diploma1.4%x2.3%$61,833
Master's degree74.5%$94,1045.1%$87,808
Doctorate14.4%$97,5430.7%$70,843
Medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometry7.4%$82,7887.2%$83,000
Total100%100%
Wage Disclaimer

Hourly earnings data are from the Labour Force Survey by Statistics Canada. Data are not available for all occupations. Hourly earnings are calculated based on usual hours worked per week. This is how an annual salary, for instance, gets converted to an hourly rate. The data include full and part-time workers along with new and experienced workers. Self-employed workers are excluded.

Annual employment income data reported in the Work Prospects section, are from the 2011 National Household Survey by Statistics Canada. Much of the data (around 70%) came directly from tax records. The data relates to the year 2010 and includes total wages and salaries and net income from self-employment.

Sources

Employment Requirements & Contacts

Regulations:
Physician
Right to Title and Practice:This job is regulated and the job title is protected in Nova Scotia (you may not use this job title without holding a provincial licence). A licence shows that the holder has met provincial requirements and is required to work in this job.
Regulating body:
College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia
7071 Bayers Road, Suite 5005
Halifax, NS B3J 2C2
(877) 282-7767
(902) 422-7476
info@cpsns.ns.ca
Useful contacts:
Doctors Nova Scotia
25 Spectacle Lake Drive
Dartmouth, NS B3B 1X7
Tel: (902) 468-1866
Fax: (902) 468-6578
info@doctorsns.com
The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
774 Echo Drive
Ottawa, ON K1S 5N8
Tel: (800) 668-3740
Fax: (613) 730-8830
feedbacl@royalcollege.ca

Training Paths & Education

Program Name:Health/medical physics
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the application of physics, nuclear science, and engineering physics to diagnostic, treatment, and therapeutic processes and public health protection. These programs include courses in radiation biophysics, biophysics, health effects of natural and artificially induced radiation, hazard evaluation, environmental radioactivity, nuclear physics, engineering physics, radiobiology, medical radiology, calibration and dosage theory, computer applications and medical informatics, and specific research problems.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Program Name:Medical scientist (MSc, PhD)
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the university graduate level (Masters, PhD)
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any undifferentiated clinical science program that prepares graduated physicians (M.D. or D.O.) as research scientists in various areas.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Program Name:Medicine (MD)
Education Level:This program is typically offered by a university school of medicine.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals for the independent professional practice of medicine, involving the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of illnesses, injuries, and other disorders of the human body. These programs include courses in the basic medical sciences, clinical medicine, examination and diagnosis, patient communications, medical ethics and laws, professional standards, and rotations in specialties such as internal medicine, surgery, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopedics, neurology, ophthalmology, radiology, clinical pathology, anesthesiology, family medicine, and psychiatry.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Additional resources: