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What does a
Physician do?

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Other common names for this position: Specialist Physician, General Practice Physician, General Practitioner, GP, General Pathologist, Doctor, Doctor of Medicine, MD, Medical Doctor, Medical Practitioner, Medical Examiner, Clinician, Family Physician, Family Doctor, Family Practitioner, Child Specialist, Pediatrician, Primary Care Physician, Critical Care Physician, Emergency Physician, Public Health Physician, Community Health Physician, Community Medicine Physician, Sports Medicine Physician, Anesthesiologist, Cardiologist, Cardiology Specialist, Dermatologist, Endocrinologist, Gastroenterologist, Geriatrician, Gynecologist, Hematologist, Physiologist, Neonatologist, Nephrologist, Neurologist, Oncologist, Pediatric Oncologist, Ophthalmologist, Otolaryngologist, Radiologist, Rheumatologist, Rhinologist, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Specialist, Urologist, Anatomical Pathologist, Clinical Pathologist, Surgeon, General Surgeon, Cardiac Surgeon, Neurological Surgeon, Vascular Surgeon, Orthopedic Surgeon, Pediatric Surgeon, Cosmetic Surgeon, Esthetic Surgeon, Plastic Surgeon, Medical Microbiologist

Description

Physicians prevent, diagnose, and treat various diseases in order to improve their patients’ overall health. They are essentially divided into two groups of health practitioners: General Practice Physicians and Specialist Physicians.


As their title implicitly states, General Practice Physicians (more commonly referred to as General Practitioners or Family Physicians) are not specialists in just one area of expertise, which means they are able to diagnose and treat general illnesses, but will need to refer patients to Specialist Physicians whenever the disease/disorder needs further medical attention.


When working in private practices, General Practitioners’ patients are usually returning ones, which means they provide continuous care to them and must update their medical records for further use. On the other hand, it is likely that General Practitioners working in a hospital or clinic will always treat new patients, meaning they usually don’t have access to their medical history and must often rely solely on information collected by Nurses during pre-assessment questionnaires.


Specialist Physicians can specialize in clinical medicine, where they diagnose and treat specific illnesses and health issues related to their field of expertise (e.g. cardiology, pneumology, radiology, or oncology), sometimes acting as consultants to other Physicians. They could also pursue a career in surgery, in which case they’ll be performing and supervising surgical procedures, or might want to work in a more research-oriented branch, studying and experimenting on human diseases.

Primary Responsibilities

Here’s a non-exhaustive list of common tasks Physicians are required to complete.


  • Reviewing patients’ medical history and medications, as well as identifying and listing their symptoms:
  • Coordinating with any other Physician the patient might be seeing.
  • Diagnosing diseases, injuries, and other health disorders:
  • Conducting routine checkups and/or physical examinations;
  • conducting or ordering tests (e.g. laboratory tests, ultrasounds, electrocardiograms, and x-rays); and
  • operating and monitoring medical equipment.
  • Prescribing and administering appropriate treatments (e.g. medication, surgery, diet, and/or exercise), in accordance with diagnoses, and referring the patient to a Specialist Physician for further examination and/or treatment, as needed:
  • Providing anaesthesia prior to performing and/or assisting in routine surgery or referring patients to a more specialized Surgeon, as needed; and
  • providing medical assistance to patients in cases of emergency.
  • Ensuring patients follow treatments and that there’s improvement in their health condition:
  • Instructing and counselling patients and their relatives, educating them on the disease and its proper care;
  • monitoring patients’ conditions closely by maintaining records and assigning Nurses to look after them; and
  • making changes in the line of treatment if the condition doesn’t improve.
  • Managing an interdisciplinary health team and instructing them on how to implement, coordinate, and evaluate patient care.
  • Complying with safety standards at all times, taking precaution measures to avoid infection and contamination.
  • Participating in health promotion and disease prevention programs, sometimes being involved in lectures and conferences.
  • In some cases, taking part in budget preparation and other financing business related activities.

Daily Tasks

  • Diagnosing and treating diseases, injuries, and other health disorders by conducting routine checkups and/or physical examinations.
  • Prescribing and administering appropriate treatments, in accordance with diagnoses.
  • Instructing and counselling patients and their relatives.
  • Maintaining accurate and detailed patient records, monitoring changes in patients’ condition, and making changes in the line of treatment if the condition doesn’t improve.
  • Managing an interdisciplinary health team and instructing them on how to implement, coordinate, and evaluate patient care.
Salary
$193,879

The average Physician salary is $193,879 per year or $99 per hour. This is around 5.9 times more than the Median wage of the country. Entry level positions start at $136,000 while most experienced workers make up to $271,000. These results are based on 284 salaries extracted from job descriptions.

$193,879
$271,000
$136,000
Deductions
Deductions
Gross Salary261,630.71 $
CPP- 2,479.95 $
EI- 930.60 $
Federal Tax- 62,627.43 $
Provincial Tax- 39,691.27 $
Total Tax- 105,729.24 $
Net Pay*155,901.47 $
In Ontario, Canada, if you make 261,630.71 $ a year, you will be taxed 105,729.24 $. That means that your take home pay will be 155,901.47 $ per year, or 12,991.79 $ per month. Your average tax rate is 40.41% and your marginal tax rate is 49.53%.
* Deductions are calculated based on the tables of Ontario, Canada income tax.
Required Skills and Qualifications
  • Excellent interpersonal, communication, leadership, and counselling skills:
  • Communicating clearly, especially verbally, in order to create a comforting and transparent environment with patients and their relatives, providing answers to their questions and addressing their concerns;
  • displaying strong customer service skills, setting high standards of patient care and safety, treating every patient with dignity and respect; and
  • being able to manage efficiently and work cohesively as part of an interdisciplinary team, dealing with a diverse group of people, always conveying a positive image and building positive relationships with others.
  • Strong sense of empathy, compassion, and altruism:
  • Demonstrating sensitivity to individual needs of patients; and
  • displaying an inherent ability to make others feel cared about.
  • Exceptional ability to work under pressure in challenging settings:
  • Having strong multitasking skills; being able to prioritize tasks and responsibilities in order to manage a high volume of work/patient flow;
  • being exceptionally flexible and able to deal with a broad variety of parameters and changing demands in a dynamic, fast-paced environment;
  • remaining calm and professional during times of critical needs; and
  • being able to face emotionally demanding situations.
  • Analytical, problem-solving, and decision-making skills:
  • Identifying issues and resolving problems in a timely manner using critical thinking and good judgment; and
  • being able to analyze, assess, and diagnose the patient’s condition in order to provide him with the proper treatments.
  • High levels of manual dexterity and motor coordination:
  • Displaying exceptional attention to detail and good hand skills, having outstanding hand-eye coordination; and
  • being able to use medical/technical equipment in an accurate and meticulous manner.
  • Exceptional professionalism and strong work ethic.
  • Great sense of dedication, commitment, responsibility and reliability.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in the use of basic computer applications, as well as the ability to work in an electronic medical record (EMR) environment.

Aside from the skills listed above, Physicians must have earned a bachelor’s degree in Medicine, Biology, or Health Science, followed by a Medical Doctor (MD) doctoral degree at an accredited university, as well as a family medicine or specialty post-graduate degree.


An accredited specialty residency training program in their designated field of expertise is usually preferred, considering Physicians without residency training are usually required to have a minimum of 3 to 5 years of work experience – compared to 1 to 2 years for those who have completed such training. Other positions might require up to 10 years of experience working in their designated field, having mastered specific medical techniques.


Moreover, additional credentials are usually required and will vary according to the Physician’s location and specialization. In Canada, these credentials include, but are not limited to, the following:


  • Certification in the College of Family Physicians (CCFP) and/or Royal College of Physicians of Canada Fellowship (FRCPC), and/or Royal College of Surgeons of Canada Fellowship (FRCSC);
  • Certification in the College of Family Physicians with a specialization in Emergency Medicine (CCFP-EM) and/or American Board of Emergency Medicine (ABEM) Certification;
  • Canadian Medical Register Enrollment as a Licentiate of the Medical Council of Canada (LMCC);
  • Registration with the provincial/territorial regulatory body;
  • Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) Coverage;
  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) Certification;
  • International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) and/or Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) Certifications;
  • Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS); and
  • Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgeons (CAPS) Membership.

It is the Physician’s responsibility to take the courses and tests that are necessary to keep these licences valid along with any necessary post-graduate credits.


Physicians also need to demonstrate sound clinical and practical knowledge of medical procedures, equipment, and tools, including medical terminology and medications. They must also comply with current medical principles and policies, along with established procedures and methods, legislations and regulations, as well as health and safety standards.


Physicians’ work is also emotionally challenging; hence, they must demonstrate exceptional stress management skills. Since the emergency medical service operates on a 24/7 basis and all work is carried out in planned shifts and/or call schedules, Physicians may be required to work flexible schedules, including regular and irregular hours, such as evenings, weekends, and national holidays.

Job Offers
There are currently "6062" available job offers for the Physician position on neuvoo.ca. Below is a list of available jobs, based on Canada's most populated metropolitan areas.
References