Program Overview

As the only bilingual medical school in Ontario, the Department of Psychiatry has access to a full range of resources in both official languages. The Ottawa Hospital, consisting of the General and Civic sites, accounts for a combined 80 acute care beds each admitting through specialized psychiatric emergency services. Both hospitals also maintain outpatient and partial hospitalization programs, as well as providing consultation-liaison services to other inpatient services. The General site also has a well-established eating disorders (on-site) and first-episode psychosis (off- site) programs each with access to a flexible number of beds for patient admission. The Civic Site also provides dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT).

Francophone emergency and acute care admissions are provided by the Montfort Hospital. This hospital also provides outpatient, partial hospitalization, and dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) programs.

Child psychiatry is available at the partially bilingual Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), as well as in French at le Centre hospitalier Pierre-Janet in Gatineau. Both provide child and adolescent emergency, inpatient, and outpatient services with full multidisciplinary team access. CHEO also has multidisciplinary outpatient subspecialty teams including ADHD, Dual Disorders, Mood and Anxiety, and Neuropsychiatry.

Finally, the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group (ROHCG) is a large dedicated psychiatric facility servicing south-eastern Ontario with Ottawa and Brockville sites. Subspecialty inpatient and outpatient services include schizophrenia, mood disorders, addictions, geriatrics, child and adolescent, and forensics. There are also outpatient anxiety and sleep disorders services, as well as partial hospitalization and school programs for youth and adolescents. Additionally, ACTT (Assertive Community Treatment Team) and Mental Health Outreach teams operate from the ROHCG.

Curriculum Details

The first stage of psychiatric training is a three week period during the second year of medical school. It consists of core didactic lectures, small group case based learning, as well as protected time for elective placements in psychiatry. Entitled Psychiatry Block, the curriculum emphasizes the connections between brain, experience, and behaviour across the lifespan. The fundamentals of psychiatric diagnosis and treatment form the main learning objectives. However, considerable time is allocated to social, ethical and medico-legal issues encountered in the treatment of the mentally ill.

Stage II (clerkship) involves the acquisition of practical physician skills. The psychiatric rotation consists of 4 weeks of general adult psychiatry and 1 week each of child and geriatric psychiatry. Placements are complemented by a didactic lecture series. The 6 week rotation can be completed in French or English, as well as an option for doing a rural placement outside of Ottawa at one of our established DME sites. In addition, all students are expected to have on-call duties during their 6 week rotation for exposure to emergency psychiatry.

For more information on undergraduate psychiatry, please contact:

Khadije Sobh
Undergraduate Education Coordinator
Undergraduate Education Program
Department of Psychiatry
Room 5458 - 1145 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON, K1Z 7K4
613-722-6521 ext. 6811

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