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The CFMS is an organization representing over 8,000 medical students from 15 Canadian medical student societies from coast to coast. We represent medical students to the public, to the federal government, and to national and international medical organizations.
PRESS RELEASE: CFMS Launches the National Wellness Program and commits to working with the AFMC to create health-promoting learning environments
May 02, 2018


HA**LIFA**X, MAY 2, 2018 – The Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS) is proud to have launched our National Wellness Program this weekend at the CFMS Spring General Meeting, held concurrently with the Canadian Conference on Medical Education (CCME) in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This is our comprehensive approach to supporting medical student wellness and working with medical education programs to ensure learner wellness is a core value.

The National Wellness Program has four major threads: Advocacy, Programming, Awareness & Resiliency**, and Personal Development.** Some of our new initiatives include the Longitudinal Wellness Initiative, which focuses on developing student wellness in the areas of nutrition, mental, financial, physical, and social & relationship wellness. We have also created two new files focused on student mistreatment and students with disabilities, to ensure we address systemic issues related to the learner environment.

The CFMS also joined the Associations of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC), Resident Doctors of Canada and other medical education stakeholders at CCME for an engaging discussion on physician and learner wellness and burnout. Physician burnout is increasingly recognized as a crisis that impairs our profession’s ability to serve our patients. Medical students experience significant burnout rates with ranges of 33 to over 50%, depending on stage of training. Attendees worked to set a direction for the future and considered priorities for charting a new course on physician wellness and burnout.

At this meeting, the CFMS highlighted the importance of a coordinated effort between undergraduate, postgraduate and student affairs offices, learner organizations, and other stakeholders in developing comprehensive approaches to improving physician wellness and addressing burnout rates among our profession. We highlighted the importance of health-promoting learning environments; educational experience that supports and promotes health and well-being. From policies to scheduling and curriculum there are significant strides we must make to ensure we are prioritizing health. Wellness is and must be a core part of the learner experience discussion, it must be a value we hold, not an afterthought once academic standards have been addressed. We look forward to a report being released by the AFMC in the near future on this important topic and will continue to work with stakeholders to advocate for learner wellness.


“The CFMS is steadfast in our commitment to learner wellness. In developing health-promoting learning environments, we all need to work towards positive, inclusive culture change.”

- Henry Annan, CFMS President

“By prioritizing medical professional health and wellness, we will improve learning outcomes and patient care. We all have the opportunity to make a lasting, positive impact on our profession and the healthcare system.”

- Stephanie Smith, CFMS President-Elect and Vice-President Student Affairs

“A comprehensive approach to improving medical learner wellness that considers not only personal development, but also ensures we have a health-promoting learner environment, is a top priority for the CFMS. Our National Wellness Program aims to make significant, lasting impacts by working with our members and medical education stakeholders through positive dialogue and collaborative advocacy.”

- Victor Do, CFMS Western Regional Representative and National Wellness Program Lead


The Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS) is the national organization representing over 8,000 medical students at 15 medical schools across Canada. Tomorrow’s physicians leading for health today.

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram: @CFMSFEMC


Christina Schweitzer
Vice-President Communications
Canadian Federation of Medical Students
Email: [email protected]
Cell: 1-587-225-8165

[PDF of PRESS RELEASE: CFMS Launches the National Wellness Program and commits to working with the AFMC to create health-promoting learning environments](/CFMS NWP Press Release SGM.pdf)

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