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Canadian Federation of
Medical Students
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About the CFMS
The CFMS is an organization representing over 8,000 medical students from 15 Canadian medical student societies from coast to coast. We represent medical students to the public, to the federal government, and to national and international medical organizations.
Medical Students Support Unmatched Colleagues
May 02, 2017

WINNIPEG, MAY 2, 2017 – The Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS) is deeply alarmed at the large number of unmatched Canadian Medical Graduates (CMGs) in the 2017 CaRMS R-1 Match, the results of which were released at the CaRMS Forum on April 30th, 2017. The CFMS has closely monitored the multi-year exponential trend of unmatched Canadian Medical Graduates (CMGs), increase from 11 (0.5%) in 2009 to 68 (2.4%) in 2017.

The CFMS team has already begun to participate in discussions with important stakeholders, including Deans of Undergraduate Medical Education and Student Affairs. This past weekend, we voiced concerns about the alarming number of unmatched students and how it relates to rising levels of stress, anxiety, and frustration. Emphasis was placed on universities providing these unmatched graduates with post-match options, as well as peer-to-peer support and networking opportunities for students facing uncertainty. An avenue that the CFMS leadership is also currently exploring is improving guidance for medical students by medical faculties leading up to and during their matching process.

The CFMS recognizes that the rising number of unmatched CMGs is complex and multi-factorial, and will require collaboration between learners, post-graduate medical programs, and regulatory bodies to explore options for addressing these issues. A broader understanding of the interaction between changes in the healthcare sector and the R-1 match is needed, to fully understand the scope of the problem and begin identifying solutions.

The CFMS will continue to advocate on behalf of unmatched medical students as well as those who will be going through the residency (R-1) matching process in the upcoming years. The CFMS will also continue to work with Canadian medical faculties to ensure that unmatched students have access to necessary personal and mental health supports. This includes addressing the heightened levels of anxiety our unmatched colleagues inevitably feel having to bear the financial burden of paying for an additional year of an already expensive education.

The CFMS stands behind all CMGs who go unmatched and endeavours to continue to provide them support. We are hopeful that the upcoming year will be a period where real solutions to address the unmatched rate will be realized. We look forward to working with all parties on this very important issue.

Quotations from the CFMS Executive
“68 current year (2.4% of participants) and 46 prior year medical students going unmatched is unacceptable. The current system is failing qualified residency-ready trainees, who find themselves unable to secure a position in a residency training program. In doing so, this same system fails the Canadian public. In addition to the Health Human Resource (HHR) issues this raises, we must not forget that each of these unmatched learners has a unique story. The CFMS and its membership are committed to advance effective policy solutions to this growing problem.”
Franco Rizzuti, CFMS President

“I am deeply saddened to hear that 68 Canadian medical students went unmatched this year—the highest unmatched rate in recent years. While the underlying causes of this problem may not yet be fully understood, what is clear is that the current system is not only failing medical students, but also the future of Canadian healthcare. The CFMS will continue to support our members and will work harder to curb this troubling trend moving forward.”
Henry Annan, CFMS President-elect

“The rising number in unmatched graduates is of enormous concern not just to medical students, but the entire Canadian healthcare community. With tightened regulations across many provinces, students who are expertly trained and eager to serve their communities are delayed entry into the workforce. The CFMS stands behind these students in what is a difficult personal and professional time, and continues to work with all stakeholders to address their concerns.”
Sarah Silverberg, CFMS Vice-President Government Affairs

“The trend of decreasing match rates is a significant concern for medical students across the country. It has become a common topic of discussion amongst our student body and a source of distress. This should not be the case. Students should not be worrying about matching as they begin their journey as medical students. But with these alarming numbers, how can they not?”
Usman Khan, CFMS Vice-President Communications

About the CFMS
The Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS), is the national organization which, represents over 8,300 medical students at 15 medical schools across Canada. Our organization celebrate 40 years, being founded in 1977, of representing, connecting & supporting medical students - tomorrow’s physicians leading for health today.

For more information:
Usman Khan, Vice-President Communications
Canadian Federation of Medical Students
Email: [email protected]
Cell: 1-613-983-8721


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