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Procedures and Guidelines

Leave of Absence from Residency Training

Categories: absence attendance PGME

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A leave of absence is an approved interruption of training, and this policy outlines the process for approving such interruption and notifying appropriate bodies and agencies about the leave of absence.

Scope of this Policy

This policy applies to all Residents in all residency training programs at the College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan.

Leaves may be granted for a variety of reasons, but are generally categorized into paid and unpaid leaves as referred to in the Collective Agreement between the University of Saskatchewan and the Resident Doctors of Saskatchewan (RDoS Collective Agreement). Leaves do not include vacation or educational leave or examination leave as per the parameters described in the RDoS Collective Agreement. 


Residency training requirements are such that by the end of training specific goals and objectives of the training program must be achieved and the Resident be competent to commence independent practice. While training requirements are generally completed in sequence, it is understood that Residents may require an interruption of training (leave of absence). Circumstances that qualify Residents for a leave of absence are: maternity/paternity/adoption/parental leave; medical/sick leave; compassionate leave; extended educational leave; others at the discretion of the Residency Program Director in consultation with Residency Program Committee, and the Associate Dean, Postgraduate Medical Education.

The expectation is that time lost or rotations/learning experiences missed during a leave will be made up with the equivalent time upon the Resident’s return to the training program.

Leaves of absence will not be granted for the purpose of generating supplemental income. Salary continuation during the leave is determined by the RDoS Collective Agreement.

It is understood for the Resident who maintains current level of appointment in a residency program will return to a residency program following a leave of absence, and is still a Resident of the program, notwithstanding his/her inactivity. The Resident is still expected to maintain a standard of conduct in keeping with the standards of the residency program, the University and the medical profession. Failure to meet these obligations may result in the withdrawal of a Resident’s appointment to the program.

All leaves must be approved by the Program Director in consultation with the Residency Program Committee or as otherwise noted in the RDoS Collective Agreement.

On the recommendation of the Program Director in consultation with the Residency Program Committee, the Associate Dean, Postgraduate Medical Education may grant a leave of absence with the understanding that the promotion/graduation date will move forward by an amount of time equal to the leave.

All leaves greater than five days must be reported to the Postgraduate Medical Education (PGME) Office. There may be special circumstances when the Program will report leaves less than five days, for example, if there has been a pattern of days missed over a period of time.

In extraordinary circumstances where a Resident is mandated by the program to be on a leave of absence, the Resident must communicate with their Program Director on a monthly basis with respect to the status of the leave. Should a Resident not respond, the Residency Program Director may take the initiative to contact the Resident directly.

Except in extraordinary circumstances, a Resident participating in remedial training shall not be permitted to take a leave of absence. Should the Program Director deem a leave of absence appropriate, the Remediation program will be considered incomplete. In such event, the Remediation program will be redesigned by the Residency Program Director, in consultation with the Residency Program Committee, upon the Resident’s return, taking into account the nature of the deficiencies identified, the performance of the Resident to date, and the need for continuity of clinical experience.

Resident appeals, Remediation/Probation programs will be deferred until a Resident has been cleared to return to the residency training program and educational licensure and Health Authority credentialing/privileges are reinstated.


All leaves must be approved by the Residency Program Director.

It is the Resident’s professional responsibility to ensure that the appropriate people are notified of the leave of absence and, when possible, that appropriate arrangements for coverage have been made.  

The PGME Office will notify the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan (CPSS) and the Saskatchewan Health Authority of any interruption to residency training including a leave of absence. Only the dates of the leave and type of leave will be reported. Any additional information will only be provided with the Resident’s consent.

CPSS will interrupt the Resident’s educational license upon notification of the leave of absence.

The Health Authority will interrupt credentialing/privileges upon notification of the leave of absence.

CMPA is notified of any interruptions to residency training including leaves of absences. Residents must contact CMPA directly to determine what if any gaps in coverage will be applied.

University registration status is interrupted during leaves or periods of inactivity in the residency training program.


Instances or concerns of non-compliance with this policy should be brought to the attention of the Associate Dean, PGME.  



Coordinator, Academic and Non-academic Processes, PGME Office

Phone: 306-966-6145