Applications for New AFC Programs

Areas of Focused Competence (AFC) programs are areas of specialty medicine that address a legitimate societal and patient population need that was unmet by the system of primary and subspecialty disciplines. AFC programs are similar to clinical fellowships, but are accredited by the Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons of Canada.

AFC programs do not receive funding from the Ministry of Health for their trainees, and require Departments/Divisions to provide an annual registration fee of approximately $2000. In addition, AFC trainees must be provided funding as per PGME’s Program Responsibilities in Area of Focused Competence (AFC) Education Policy.

If a Department or Division is interested in offering an AFC program that is not already being provided through the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, a formal request to open a new program must be provided to the PGME Office via Lindsay Curtis, PGME Program Evaluation and Project Coordinator (CQI & Accreditation), The request must include:

  1. A rationale for the AFC program. This must include information that specifies why an AFC program should be offered, rather than simply a clinical fellowship program (i.e., an AFC Diploma is becoming a hiring requirement within our subspecialty nationally, etc.)
  2. Financial and human resource allocation for the AFC program, with enough detail to ensure PGME is confident the program can take on the additional financial and academic responsibilities required to maintain an AFC program.
If the above request is approved by PGME, the PGME Office will contact the Royal College to have a new AFC application opened through the CanAMS portal. After the application has been prepared by the Department/Division, the PGME Office will review the application and provide feedback and edits prior to submission. While the PGME Office does not complete the application on behalf of a Department or Division, they are available for support, additional information, and guidance. Questions can be directed to Lindsay Curtis.

Once complete, the application will be submitted to the Royal College by the PGME Office. By submitting the application, the PGME Office and the Associate Dean PGME are formally “signing off” on the application for the AFC program. Therefore, if during the process of application development it becomes clear that much more work will need to be done to prepare for an AFC program, the PGME Office may decide not to proceed with application submission.