O Canada!

DOs get full access to the 2020 Canadian Match

All participating Canadian provinces give DOs equal status to U.S.-trained MDs for the 2020 Match and beyond.


Graduating osteopathic medical students and DOs are eligible to apply for residency training in all Canadian provinces participating in the 2020 Canadian Match, according to the Canadian Osteopathic Association (COA).

Saskatchewan recently updated its requirements, becoming the final participating province to recognize the qualifications of American osteopathic medical school graduates as equal to that of U.S.-trained MDs. The move opens up residency training opportunities across Canada, which primarily categorizes DOs applying for residency positions as international medical graduates (IMGs).

‘Decades of effort’

“This expansion of opportunity is the culmination of decades of effort to secure recognition of the osteopathic medical degree and bring the next generation of Canadian DOs home to train in our communities,” said Jason Crookham, DO, COA president.

To participate in the Canadian Match, IMGs must pass the Medical Council of Canada Evaluating Examination (MCCEE) and the National Assessment Collaboration (NAC) Examination. Quebec, Alberta and British Columbia have additional provincial requirements for IMGs, according to the Canadian Resident Matching Service (CaRMS).

Match details

First-time participants in the Canadian Match can register for the 2020 Match starting July 10. CaRMS administers two iterations of its main residency match. Match Day for the first iteration is March 3, 2020; Match Day for the second is April 15, 2020.

About 400 Canadian students are currently enrolled in U.S. osteopathic medical schools, says James Church, DO, COA executive director. More than 30 DOs currently practice in Canada, which the COA hopes will increase in tandem with residency training opportunities in the country.

COA successfully lobbied for the eligibility changes, which give graduates of COMs equal standing with all other IMGs. Learn more about the Canadian Match here.

Related reading:

U.S.-trained DOs recognized as equal to MDs in 20 African countries

The NRMP 2020 Match and ERAS timeline for residency applicants


    1. James Church, DO CCFP FCFP, COA Executive Director

      ACGME residency training and RCPSC or CFPC certification has always been the requirement for full medical practice in Canada for osteopathic medical graduates. Only the province of British Columbia will accept osteopathic residency training for the limited “osteopathic practice’ registration category which excludes obstetrics and major surgery. Once ACGME and AOA have completed co-accreditation, then all AOA residency will be recognized by RCPSC and CFPC. Please note however that while ABFM certification is recognized for reciprocal CFPC certification without the need for further Canada certification examinations (US Family Medicine residencies are 3 years, verses 2 years in Canada), many other specialties will require additional training in order to meet RCPSC certification requirements. So, those who have completed specialty certification in US programs will need to check with the RCPSC to make sure that their training will meet certification requirements with regard to program content and duration.

  1. Dani

    So we still match with IMGs in the second iteration which is not equal to MD US graduates who can apply for the first match. At the moment chances of getting a match through the second iteration means you only have 20% chances of matching. I’m not sure how this is equal at all.

    1. Rose Raymond, AOA Communications

      Hi Dani,

      Thanks for your comment. CaRMS’ R-1 Main Residency Match page says the following:

      This match is offered in two iterations each year,

      The first iteration includes all graduating students and prior year graduates from Canadian, American and international medical schools who meet the basic eligibility criteria and have no prior postgraduate training in Canada or the US.

      The second iteration includes positions and applicants not matched in the first iteration, applicants with previous Canadian or US postgraduate training, as well as applicants who did not participate in the first iteration for any other reason.

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