Specialty Psychiatry

Subspecialty General

Role and Facility Information

The Cowichan Valley Department of Psychiatry of Vancouver Island Health Authority (Island Health) is seeking a General Psychiatrist interested in joining the Mental Health and Substance Use (MHSU) programs.

The Cowichan Valley supports a continuum of services including Cowichan District Hospital’s (CDH) 15 bed Psychiatry In-Patient Unit which works collaboratively with primary care providers.

Through Duncan’s Mental Health Substance Use programs the successful candidate will consult to:

•Short Term Services (community Crisis Response and Brief interventions) through which the Psychiatry team provides part of the programs’ response to GP referrals.
•Case Management Services for moderate community support and a more intense ACT team (Assertive Community Treatment); plus, an Early Psychosis Intervention program.
•Substance Use programs which provide counselling and access to residential treatment. As well the program is integrating with community responses to the opioid crisis.
•All programs and services are integrated with a graduated housing program that provides a range of support for people to live in the community who otherwise could not.
•Separate psychiatric services for seniors are provided by Island Health, members of the Psychiatry team are able to participate in these services.
•Two tertiary psychiatry facilities exist in the Cowichan Valley as island-wide resources and are supported by the Duncan Psychiatrist team: Seniors tertiary care with 25 beds, and Adult tertiary care with 27 beds.

The MHSU program provides a modified psychiatrist on-call response with a crisis response team for the Cowichan District Hospital Emergency Department and everywhere throughout the hospital, connected to our consultation-liaison function. This can be supported by BC’s “Medical On Call Availability Program” (MOCAP) depending on level of service.

As Island Health is part of the UBC Faculty of Medicine Island Medical Program there is opportunity for training of medical students and residents and applying for a clinical appointment is supported.

Participation in research is supported and can be facilitated by Island Health.

Administrative duties of the position include attending clinical team meetings and providing reports to the Department of Psychiatry meetings.

This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to the development of psychiatry services within a brand new, state of the art acute care campus. The new Cowichan District Hospital is expected to open Fall of 2026. Psychiatry services will include a dedicated psychiatric emergency zone embedded in the Emergency Department. There will be a four bed psychiatric intensive care unit and a 20 bed inpatient unit providing care to individuals in the Cowichan Valley.

Start Date

As soon as possible

Community Information

Located in the beautiful Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island, the City of Duncan enjoys Canada’s most temperate climate. Characterized by diverse landscapes from lush countryside to scenic coastal villages and charming inland communities, the Cowichan Valley, encompasses freshwater lakes, saltwater beaches and marinas, and farmland. The area offers a wide variety of attractions for outdoor enthusiasts including great hiking and biking trails, golfing, sailing, canoeing and ocean kayaking. In addition to many local artisans and attractions, the South Cowichan Valley boasts five top vineyards and wineries.

Public education in Duncan is complemented by renowned local private schools and located only 45 minutes south, Victoria also offers excellent educational, cultural and recreational opportunities.

Vancouver Island, one of Canada’s most livable regions, provides the very best in both urban and rural living. Renowned for its breathtaking natural beauty, Vancouver Island offers an opportunity to combine a rewarding career with an enviable quality of life.

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Compensation Type
Estimated Remuneration
Mixed Fee-for-Service and Sessional Billing

Benefits and Incentives

May be eligible for additional remuneration in accordance with the Rural Subsidiary Agreement (RSA) including:
Retention Premium
Retention Flat Fee
Relocation Funding Available
$up to $15,000
Recruitment Incentive
Other Benefits/Incentives
Additional incentives available under Rural Subsidiary Agreement (subject to eligibility) include: Rural CME starting at $3,000/annum in years 3 & 4 in community, increasing to a maximum of $6,000/annum after 4 years. Free shared office space, secretary, telephone, fax and email.
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Live and work in BC


Known as the “City of the Totems,” the community of Duncan takes pride in its rich First Nations heritage. Over 75 totem poles embellish the townscape, along with fascinating cultural artifacts. Duncan is located in the Cowichan region in the south central part of Vancouver Island and is a supply and service hub for the area. It is home to some of British Columbia’s newest vineyards that grow amidst rolling hillsides and country lanes.

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