Mon Apr 26 2021
I am an international medical doctor. There are lots of us around, usually working as anything but healthcare workers. At the start of the pandemic, international doctors made a plea to work in the Canadian health system to help. But our province and country rejected us. Many of us have completed our Canadian licensing exams and even the US ones. We are either new graduates or fully trained anesthesiologists who have experience working in epidemics and disaster situations. We also have advanced degrees. But we are of no use here in Ontario and Canada in the midst of a global pandemic. I personally applied for residency 3 times. I was never even called for an interview. The processes are so biased, and usually, our files are reviewed by residents in the program who tend to look for candidates who will "fit into the program". I am not sure what that means, but it's usually that they are looking for candidates with no accents (unless they bring in their own funding package), and who wear Patagonia sweatshirts and have graduated from UK, USA or another high-income country. Some programs just don't even consider IMGs. I don't understand why Canada takes highly educated immigrants, usually doctors and lets them work as butchers and cab drivers. At least in our own countries, we would be serving our communities, but we leave for safety and a better life. I'm sad that immigrants are the ones dying in the Ontarian hotspots, and the government is not willing to help us, and not even willing to let us help. The other scary part is that even Canadian medical students are not matching into residency spots and will likely sit out this year from the workforce, in the MIDDLE of a pandemic where we need ALL hands on deck. The system is broken and prejudiced and it needs to be fixed.