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Saskatchewan International Physician Practice Assessment


The Saskatchewan International Physician Practice Assessment (SIPPA) is a practice ready assessment that ensures that international physicians possess the appropriate clinical skills and knowledge to provide quality patient care in Canada. The assessment encompasses a global review of practice including communication skills, information gathering, learning techniques, prescribing, case management and readiness for independent practice. SIPPA is comprised of two parts; Orientation to Family Practice in Saskatchewan and the Clinical Field Assessment (CFA).

There are typically three SIPPA iteration per calendar year. The timing of and number of candidates in each iteration fluctuates. The process of reviewing candidates is ongoing.

Entry into SIPPA is a competitive process and there is no guarantee of selection. Candidates who are selected for SIPPA are:

  • Provided accommodation for the duration of the in person orientation and assessment; and
  • Provided an honorarium while participating in SIPPA; and
  • Required to sign a three-year return of service agreement to provide service in a specific underserved rural community in Saskatchewan. The community is assigned by the Saskatchewan Health Authority and approved by the Ministry of Health. A sample of the return of service agreement can be found here (PDF).

There are key milestones that you will pass through if pursuing the SIPPA pathway to being a family physician in Saskatchewan.


You must first meet the Pre-Screen eligibility criteria. The Pre-Screen eligibility criteria are set out by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan and SIPPA. Meeting the pre-screen eligibility criteria does not guarantee you will be eligible for a medical license in Saskatchewan. You must keep all requirements including your currency of practice current and up to date until the time that you are selected for and begin the CFA.

The Pre-Screen eligibility criteria are:

  1. Successfully completed an undergraduate medical degree from a country/school listed on the FAIMER or World Directory of Medical Schools list.
  2. Successfully completed a post-graduate/internship/residency training program in Family Medicine that is a minimum of 12 months in duration.  You are required to have a minimum of eight weeks of post-graduate training in the required rotations of General Surgery, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine and Obstetrics & Gynecology as well as training in Psychiatry.
    If you are deficient in some of the rotations and you can prove that you have experience practicing in the area of deficiency as an independently practicing family physician the College may accept this experience in lieu of training.
  3. Have three years of full scope practice as a family physician if your post-graduate/internship/residency training program was less than 24 months in length. 
  4. Submit documents for source verification through the Medical Council of Canada (MCC) Physician Credentials Repository.
  5. Pass standing in the Medical Council of Canada’s Qualifying Exam Part 1 (MCCQE1).
  6. Pass standing on either the Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Exam Part II (MCCQE2) or the National Assessment Collaboration (NAC) Objective Structures Clinical Examination (OSCE).  
  7. Have been current in practice by being in active, independent practice as a family physician in the last three years with a minimum of three months full-time family practice.
    • Active independent practice as a family physician means the physician has been practicing independently as the patient’s Most Responsible Physician. This means the physician is authorized to diagnose, plan, implement, manage and follow up with plan for treatment for a patient as well order medications and diagnostic procedures. Arrangements that do not qualify include volunteer positions if the physician is not the most responsible physician, assist work, observerships and preceptorships.
  1. Have successfully completed one of the following as proof of English Language Proficiency1. Proof of English Language Proficiency expires two years from the date of examination. This requirement must be kept current and up to date from the time you meet all pre-screen requirements until the start of the CFA.
    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic Version – Taken within the previous 24 months and achieved a minimum of 7.0 in each band.
    • Occupational English Test (OET) Medicine Version – Taken within the previous 24 months and achieved a minimum grade of B.
    • Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) General – Taken within the previous 24 months and achieved a minimum grade of 9 in all sections.  

1Candidates are exempted from English language proficiency testing if their medical education – medical degree and internship – and patient care experience were in one of the following countries that have English as a first and native language: Australia, Bahamas, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Canada*, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, United Kingdom, United States of America, US Virgin Islands and the Caribbean Islands of: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados,Dominica, Grenada, Grenadines, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Trinidad and Tobago. (*exceptions apply).
CPSS may consider that English Language Proficiency is met if the person was/is licensed as a Clinical Assist/Surgical Assist in Canada, but this will be evaluated on a case by case basis by CPSS upon application. To confirm an ELP outcome, CPSS suggests the IELTS, OET or CELPIP exams be completed

Pre-Screen Checklist

The purpose of the Pre-Screen Checklist is to help you review whether or not you meet the pre-screen eligibility criteria prior to having to commit a fee for an official ruling.

You should complete the Pre-Screen Checklist, upload it and a copy of your Curriculum Vitae (CV) into your My saskdocs profile. We will review your information and provide feedback and next steps. There is no deadline, Pre-Screen Checklists are accepted throughout the year. You can upload revised documents into your profile at anytime for further review.

Pre-Screen eligibility criteria and licensure requirements are subject to change at anytime.

Submit an Application for Medical Registration for Saskatchewan

Once you meet the Pre-Screen eligibility requirements saskdocs will invite you to begin the Review of Qualifications (ROQ) through the Application for Medical Registration (AMR) with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan (CPSS). Do not submit a Review of Qualifications without being invited to do so.

You will have 3 months to submit the Review of Qualifications. If you do not submit in this timeframe, you will be required to complete a new Pre-Screen Checklist.

Therapeutics Decision Making (TDM) Exam

A current Pass standing on the Therapeutics Decision Making Exam is a requirement to be eligible for SIPPA. Access to this examination is by invitation. Invitations to express interest in writing the TDM examination are issued by the SIPPA Office.

Obtain and Maintain a Preliminary Ruling from the CPSS

Provided that your Review of Qualifications and supporting processes are successful you will be issued a Preliminary Ruling from the CPSS. The Preliminary Ruling will indicate that you are eligible for an Educational License and allows you to be considered for selection. Preliminary Rulings are subject to expiration if any of the time-sensitive requirements expire. Obtaining a Preliminary Ruling does not guarantee selection for SIPPA.

Provincial Interview for selection into SIPPA and family practice suitability

If you have a valid Preliminary Ruling and you obtained a pass on the TDM you are in the pool of candidates that will be considered for a provincial interview. A selection committee will review your professional qualifications and select candidates for an interview for potential selection into SIPPA and a practice opportunity in Saskatchewan. The interview will be to determine personal and professional suitability to practice family medicine in Saskatchewan and fulfill a return of service in an underserved Saskatchewan community. Selection for an provincial interview does not guarantee selection for SIPPA.

The Interview Committee will determine which candidates proceed to entry into SIPPA. If you are selected for SIPPA you will receive an offer to accept your seat in SIPPA and to practice family medicine in Saskatchewan.

Please note that a valid Canadian driver’s license is required. This means a valid license that allows you to drive alone, not a learner’s permit.

Enter SIPPA – Centralized Orientation and Clinical Field Assessment (CFA)

If you are selected for and accept a seat in SIPPA, you will attend a Centralized Orientation followed by the Clinical Field Assessment. The CFA will occur in communities other than the community in which you will do your three year return of service.

Begin Practice as a Family Physician in Saskatchewan

Upon successful completion of SIPPA you will begin your practice as a family physician in the community you are assigned to for completion of your Return of Service.