Addictions Medicine

The PGY3 in Addiction Medicine allows residents to develop skills and knowledge in the management of substance use disorders in the outpatient and inpatient settings. Graduates can serve as a resource to their community as clinicians, teachers and researchers in addiction medicine.

Goals and Objectives

Graduates of this program should be able to:

1. Conduct a comprehensive substance use assessment, including:

  • Take a complete alcohol and drug history
  • Assess for co-morbid psychiatric conditions
  • Identify medical complications of substance use
  • Identify psychosocial problems that may affect treatment and recovery
  • Order laboratory investigations to assess substance use
  • Diagnose substance use and concurrent disorders
  • Develop a comprehensive management plan to treat the substance use disorder and concurrent medical and psychiatric conditions

2. Provide counselling for patients using motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioral therapy.

3. Provide both outpatient and inpatient medical management of withdrawal from substances of abuse.

4. Manage concurrent chronic pain and substance use disorders

5. Initiate and monitor appropriate pharmacotherapy for substance use disorders

6. Function effectively in a multidisciplinary team to provide high quality care to individuals with substance use disorders

7. Become familiar with a wide range of local addiction resources including outpatient clinics, withdrawal management centres, residential treatment programs, specialized assessment and treatment centres and self-help groups

8. Provide specialized addiction consultations to local health providers both within the hospital and the local community

9. Advocate for those with substance use disorders within the health care system and within the community

10. Teach other physicians and students in the field of addiction medicine and remain current with relevant research.

Program Structure

Rotations include:

  • Inpatient addiction medicine in an academic hospital (TOH Substance Use Program)
  • Inpatient and outpatient care in an addiction and mental health hospital (Royal Ottawa)
  • Outpatient care of addiction and concurrent disorders at the Oasis Program, the University of Ottawa Health Services and other outpatient settings.
  • Chronic and acute pain management (TOH Pain Service)
  • Additional training in psychiatry and infectious diseases
  • Training for methadone exemption, buprenorphine prescribing and possible certification from the International Society of Addiction Medicine (ISAM)
  • Participation in weekly addictions rounds and group education sessions.
  • Medical administration and leadership opportunities, including teaching more junior learners.
  • Attend addiction medicine academic rounds and conferences
  • Complete a scholarly project.


Your time in the program will be evaluated using standardized forms available through the Department of Family Medicine’s one45 system. Field notes will provide direct observation evaluations. Residents will also meet with the Program Director regularly throughout the residency period.

Financial Aid

We offer the PGY3 stipend equivalent to all PGY3 residents who are entering the program directly from PGY2. Re-entry candidates can apply to receive similar payment via the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care. Please note that this funding is granted for up to 12 months of residency training only. Applicants interested in completing the Graduate Program would need to seek funding from other sources for the second year of training.



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