National Physician Survey

The National Physician Survey’s goal is to produce a comprehensive database documenting the practice patterns of Canadian physicians in response to health-care needs of the Canadian population, as well as their own personal interests and career plans. It also provides the perspectives and expressed practice intentions of the physicians of tomorrow.

From 2004 to 2014, the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC), the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC) collaborated in undertaking periodic anonymized surveys of Canadian physicians, medical residents and medical students. This initiative was called the National Physician Survey (NPS). Surveys covered many different topics related to physician services and the health workforce in Canada, health care issues, use of electronic medical records and practice profiles, amongst others. Over the years the surveys yielded very useful data. Any individual or organization who wished access to the data simply submitted a request form to one of the partners for access to the data. Hundreds of requests were received from many different individuals, from researchers and health service planners, to funders, policymakers and advocates, to name a few. Requests came from across Canada and internationally.

The NPS has, as of 2016, come to an end and will be replaced in late 2017 by a new initiative called the Canadian Physician Database (CPDB). The three original partners (CFPC, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Canadian Medical Association) are currently collaborating, under the leadership of the RCPSC, on developing the CPDB. The goal of the CPDB is to improve upon the NPS and address recruitment and response rate challenge experienced with the NPS.

Note that data collected by the NPS surveys will continue to be made available to interested parties. Access the NPS survey data and submit a request form or contact one of the partners.
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