The Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa is committed to providing equal opportunities to all qualified students. Students with disabilities are expected to accomplish the “core competencies” of the program. As described in the document “Essential Skills and Abilities Required for the Study of Medicine” found on the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre (OUAC) website at Ontario Universities Application Centre (OUAC), “all students must have the required skills and abilities described in the Section on Technical Standards. All individuals are expected to review this document to assess their ability to meet these standards. This policy does not preclude individuals with disabilities. Students who anticipate requiring disability-related accommodation are responsible for notifying the medical school.”
Accommodations are meant to reduce barriers, in order to allow otherwise qualified medical students with disability to succeed in the academic MD Program. An accommodation is defined as any adjustment or modification made to give students with disability equal opportunity for success, while ensuring that all academic and professionalism requirements are met. A reasonable accommodation does not alter the nature of the training program or change requirements for promotion, progression or graduation. It is not meant to provide an unfair advantage to any student. A reasonable accommodation is meant to provide an effective and accessible learning environment for all students.
In compliance with Academic Regulation I-16 - Academic Accommodations (Approved by the Senate on June 10, 2019), the Policy outlines how the University of Ottawa meets its legal duty to accommodate in relation to academic accommodation for students and student applicants with disabilities under the Ontario Human Rights Code. Under item 16, it describes SASS - Student Academic Success Service as the central resource for disability advising and the development of accommodation plans for students with disabilities. SASS - Student Academic Success Service is responsible for co-ordinating the academic accommodations process for students, including obtaining and storing relevant disability related information (e.g. documentation related to any permanent, temporary, or fluctuating functional limitation)
Accommodations are unique to each individual. Keeping in mind the added responsibility of medical students regarding patient care and safety, the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa has established a Student Accommodations Committee (SAC), who has the mandate to determine, at the request of Academic Success Service (SASS) - Academic Accommodations for a medical student or an applicant to the MD Program, reasonable accommodation, pursuant to the Ontario Human Rights Code, to demonstrate the required Essential Skills and Abilities to succeed in the MD Program. The goal is that students meet the required objectives of the program and to ensure fairness to all students in the program. This determination will consider that students or prospective students must also be eligible to take the Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Examination Part I and II licensing examinations in order to practice medicine in Canada.
The need for an accommodation is assessed in regards to the student’s functional limitation, as documented by expert opinion, and the specific goal of the accommodation. Such need may fall into one of the following categories: