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Physician Recruitment and Retention Update

Released on February 8, 2024

A newly ratified contract between Saskatchewan physicians and the Government of Saskatchewan marks a significant achievement in the latest Saskatchewan Health Human Resources (HHR) Action Plan update.

Highlights of the new, four-year contract include:

  • An overall average general rate increase of 2.5 per cent per year (April 1, 2022 to March 31, 2026).
  • A competitive market rate adjustment applied to the first year of the agreement.
  • Increased funding to support long term retention, parental leave and continuing medical education.

The agreement will help in the effort to retain and recruit physicians in Saskatchewan and works to provide patients in the province with enhanced access to primary health care.

The new contract also introduces funding to address gender pay inequity in physician fee codes, as well as funding to support physician training and awareness related to equity, diversity, racism, and truth and reconciliation.  

“Continued investment into our physicians allows Saskatchewan to remain desirable for family doctors and specialists to live and work,” Health Minister Everett Hindley said. “Our new agreement will ensure continued retention of our quality doctors as well as incentivize more professionals to choose Saskatchewan.”

Additional progress is being made on multiple initiatives of Saskatchewan's HHR Action Plan to recruit, train, incentivize and retain more health care workers.  

Physician Recruitment Updates:

  • Since September 2021, 262 physicians have been recruited to Saskatchewan from outside of the province, 40 physicians from outside the country. This includes 107 family physicians and 155 specialists.
  • To date, 223 potentially eligible applications have been received for the enhanced Rural Physician Incentive Program of up to $200,000 over five years offered to family physicians practicing or returning to practice in rural Saskatchewan. Eighty-seven have been approved. Applications continue to come in and are being evaluated as they are received.
  • Psychiatry recruitment is also ongoing: Domestic and international psychiatrists attended a session hosted by the Saskatchewan Healthcare Recruitment Agency. The Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) is in the process of issuing a letter of offer to nine psychiatrists.

Recruitment efforts are being made in collaboration with the SHA to hire additional anesthesiologists, and with the Saskatchewan Cancer Agency to hire additional oncologists.

Additional HHR Progress Updates:  

  • 253 hard to recruit positions have been filled as a result of the Rural and Remote Recruitment Incentive of up to $50,000 offered to new employees in nine high-priority health occupations. This incentive is available in 54 rural and remote communities across Saskatchewan.
  • The Final Clinical Placement Bursary, assisting students preparing for a career in health care with their final year, continues to draw interest with 191 applications received and 145 approved for payment since April 1, 2023.
  • 964 Nursing Graduates from Saskatchewan and out of province have been hired since December 2022.
  • Of the 416 registered nurses recruited from the Philippines in November 2022, 178 have arrived in Saskatchewan and 60 have commenced employment in the province.
  • The health system Navigators have assisted 41 individuals in transitioning to employment with the SHA and supported 426 individuals who have initiated action to gain licensure in their respective profession.
  • 215 positions have been filled of the 250 new and enhanced permanent full-time positions targeted in nine high-priority occupations to stabilize staffing in rural and remote areas of the province.

Details on health care opportunities, how to access them and more information on the province's HHR Action Plan are available at:



For more information, contact:

Media Relations
Phone: 306-787-4083

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