The Supplemental Emergency Medicine Experience (SEME) program is an innovative fellowship funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) and administered through the Department of Family and Community Medicine (DFCM) at the University of Toronto. The SEME program offers a full-time three month clinical immersion in emergency medicine and presents a learning structure that is practical and relevant. It is designed for physicians practicing comprehensive family medicine in smaller and rural communities and provides a unique opportunity for comprehensive skills enhancement in emergency medicine.
The SEME program was created in 2012 by Drs. Shirley Lee, Eric Letovsky, and Howard Ovens, in collaboration with the DFCM at the University of Toronto and the Ontario MOHLTC. To date, the SEME program has successfully trained 140 family physicians providing them with enhanced skills in emergency medicine. In 2020, the Ontario MOHLTC approved another five years of funding for the SEME Program which included the creation of a satellite site in Thunder Bay. This satellite site will provide a much needed training option closer to home for Northern Ontario physicians. The Ontario SEME Program is the first of its kind in Canada and has been accredited by the College of Family Physicians of Canada. In 2017, the Nanaimo Emergency Education Program, a rural EM training program based on the SEME model was launched in Nanaimo, B.C.
The mission of the SEME Program is to provide a practical training option for practicing family physicians wishing to enhance their emergency medicine skills, thereby increasing recruitment and retention of physicians providing emergency care in rural and semi-rural communities. The SEME Program is centralized and administered at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto. A key factor in the success of the program is the collaborative teaching efforts of the fourteen University of Toronto affiliated hospital sites, the Rural Ontario Medical Program teaching sites and over 300 faculty including emergency physicians, intensivists, anesthesiologists, and trauma surgeons.