Physician On-Call Programs

The Physician On-Call Programs include the following groups:

  • Specialist On-Call
  • Specialized On-Call
  • Rural On-Call
  • Rural GP with Special Skills.


Specialist On-Call and Specialized On-Call

POCP provides funding for eligible and regionally mandated Specialist On-Call programs where the physician:

  • Is on-call to see new patients for other services.
  • Provides emergency specialist care, typically in an acute-care setting.

Specialist On-Call and Specialized On-Call physicians must meet thresholds for numbers of direct attendances to patients after hours. After hours are defined as 17:00 hrs-07:00 hrs on weekdays and any time on weekends and statutory holidays.

Rural On-Call

Rural On-Call funding is in place where:

  • Rural physicians are available to provide rural emergency on-call services at eligible facilities.
  • There is general public emergency on-call coverage 24 hours a day.
  • The emergency department is not staffed by full-time physicians.
  • There are fewer than 25,000 unscheduled visits annually.

General information

  • Programs applying for on-call funding must complete and submit call logs for at least one month.
  • Programs will not duplicate services provided by other eligible on-call programs.
  • Second on-call programs will be considered but must demonstrate their essential nature.
  • To promote a safe and healthy environment, no single physician will be eligible to receive more than 0.7 FTE in funding from a single program.

Apply for the program

Zone medical directors distribute the funding for this program. Start the application process by contacting your zone medical director. Find your Zone Medical Director.

To find contact information for medical directors:
Use the College of Physicians & Surgeons of Alberta Physician Search

Current payment levels

This section includes payment information as of April 1, 2016, when payment levels were last set.

Program remuneration (as of April 1, 2019)

Under the terms of the Amending Agreement, Physician On-Call Program rates for 2017/2018 were placed in abeyance. Rates will be increased by 1.05% on April 1, 2019. Retroactive payments for April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2019 will be made shortly thereafter. The table below will be updated with the new rates after April 1.

Specialist On-Call 

Category Level l Payment
A   On-Site: $229,750 per annum
B 1 $211,370 per annum (response time less than one hour)
B 2 $158,528 per annum (response time one to four hours)
B 3 $105,685 per annum (response time more than four hours but within the on-call period

Specialized On-Call

Level Payment
1 $211,370 per annum (response time less than one hour)
2 $158,528 per annum (response time one to four hours)
3 $105,685 per annum (response time more than four hours but within the on-call period)

Rural On-Call

  • Payment: $158,528 per annum (no minimum threshold for on-site attendances required)

Rural GP with Special Skills

  • Payment: $158,528 per annum

Daily and hourly rates

Category Level Per 24 hours Per hour
A   $629.45 $26.23
B 1 $579.10 $26.13
B 2 $434.32 $18.10
B 3 $298.55 $12.06
Rural On-Call $25.45


  • Payment for Specialist On-Call and Specialized On-Call is based on response time for direct after-hours’ attendance to patients.
  • ROCs and Rural GPs with Special Skills are funded at the B2 level (currently $158,528).
  • Hourly rates for Levels A, B1, B2 and B2 are based on a schedule of 8760 hours per annum. Hourly rates for Rural On-Call are based on a schedule of 6230 hours per annum.

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