Surgeon Job Description: Top Duties and Requirements

A Surgeon, or General Surgeon, is a type of Physician that performs surgical procedures on patients to treat a wide range of illnesses. Surgeons can perform general surgery, but many Surgeons specialize in a specific area of medicine, such as neurology, cardiology, or orthopedics.

Build a Job Description

Surgeon duties and responsibilities

A Surgeon’s primary duty is to operate on patients, but they have various other duties and responsibilities to attend to as well, including:

  • Examine patients to diagnose whether they need surgery 
  • Create a surgical and treatment plan based on the patient’s medical history 
  • Perform preoperative checks to ensure the patient is ready for surgery
  • Ensure everything in the operating room is sterile 
  • Inform patients about the surgery and any risks involved 
  • Oversee postoperative treatment 
  • Research new surgical techniques 
  • Observe the Canadian Patient Bill of Rights
Build a Job Description

Surgeon Job Description Examples:


Example 1

Job Description: Small Animal Surgeon - VCA Canada Guelph Veterinary Surgery Services VCA Canada Guelph Veterinary Surgery Services is seeking a Board-Certified Small Animal Surgeon to join our specialty health care team. We are a busy and growing small animal specialty hospital looking for a Surgeon to join our team. Our specialty team consists of four board certified surgeons, working out of two locations performing orthopedic, soft tissue, emergency and mobile surgeries, and a board certified Internist performing consults, ultrasounds and endoscopy. We will be adding a part time Cardiologist in the fall, and an additional Internist in the near future This permanent, full time (or part time, if preferred) surgery position consists of 2-4 days per week with NO ON CALL responsibilities required. The primary duties would include stationary and the potential of mobile surgery working out of our Guelph location. Guelph Veterinary Surgery Services offers two exceptional referral surgery options for veterinarians and pet owners. Both services employ a team approach to specialty procedures offering optimal communication and care before, during and after surgery. The team works closely with our sister hospital, Mississauga Oakvillle Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Hospital, to help provide more advanced diagnostics and care for those patients who require it. About Us The city of Guelph is a vibrant community of over 135,000 with a lively downtown, abundant shopping opportunities and a dynamic cultural core. Surrounded by the rolling hills of southwestern Ontario, Guelph is an hour's drive from Toronto and even closer to Hamilton and Kitchener-Waterloo. The city is characterized by many 19th-century limestone buildings including City Hall and the dramatic Church of Our Lady which dominates the city skyline. Specialty and craft shops, coffee houses, nightclubs, restaurants featuring flavors of the world. Recreational opportunities are everywhere. Cycling trails challenge off-roaders, and hiking trails link Guelph to Ontario's famous Bruce Trail. As member of VCA, we can offer: CE opportunities with access to annual VCA conferences, seminars and CE allowance Networking, collaboration and knowledge exchange with other veterinarians within our practices Continued investments in new technologies, advanced diagnostics, and modern facilities A commitment to give back through initiatives such as Paw it Forward and Pet Pantry Active research studies for publication and industry growth Additionally, we offer a comprehensive compensation package, group benefits including health and dental benefits, Continuing Education time and allowance, professional dues, and more! Join Us! For further information, please contact Erin Bangma, General Manager For more information on who we are, what we do, Paw It Forward and opportunities with VCA, please visit us online at VCA is committed to providing an inclusive and diverse workplace and is an equal opportunity employer. If you require any assistance, please let us know.

Example 2

Salary: $80,000 + depending on experience - New Grads Welcome! Package: This practice offers, A competitive salary plus bonus potential, Medical, dental and vision insurance, Generous CE allowance, Professional liability coverage, Membership dues, VIN membership, Outstanding medical and pet supply discounts. Type of Work: Small Animal Vet Surgeon Job Details: The practice has a fantastic opportunity located roughly 1hr West of Mississauga, Ontario. The practice are a companion animal practice in Guelph, ON, is growing and looking for a full time Associate Veterinarian to join their team. Guelph is a fabulous place to live and work! A safe and family-friendly city, with picturesque trails, Guelph Lake, the Guelph Arboretum, rivers, a craft beer scene and array of restaurant options, there truly is something for everyone! They have a beautiful and modern clinic that is certified Feline Friendly (silver) and was fully renovated in [phone number]It includes 3 exam rooms plus 1 dedicated feline room, a spacious treatment area, separate surgery and dental suites with digital dental x-ray, comfort room, and doctor’s office. Their doctors work collaboratively and cooperatively to discuss cases and ensure we are providing exceptional patient and client care. Their clients are a feature of the clinic themselves - they have a long-established and clientele, who value the compassion and high standard of service their entire team delivers. Mentorship is available and new grads are welcome to apply. There are a few requirements for applicants listed below: Provincial DVM licensing, or eligibility to be licensed Passion for what you do every day Enthusiasm, energy and a positive attitude are a must A strong desire to educate and build solid relationships with clients Excellent communication skills If you are interested in this role and require further information please: APPLY NOW BELOW. If this role is not quite right for you but you are looking for a new temporary or permanent position please see ALL JOBS or contact us at info@[website] is a digitally based international job platform providing all your job needs in the veterinary industry. Our Services Include: Clinical Jobs – Locum and Permanent Opportunities for vets and nurses in the UK, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Northern Ireland and the Republic Of Ireland. Commercial Jobs – Industry and commercial roles from sales to technical advisory positions within many corporate and independent businesses active in the veterinary industry. From Pharmaceutical, wholesaler to financial positions your next step in your career is just a click away. Webinars - Flexible, Cost Effective Digital Professional Development. Register today for your free digital portal access and support from one of our expert team on contracts, visas, legislation and payment advice amongst other things. All conversations are of course confidential.

Example 3

Medical Office Assistant IN Plastic Surgery Practice: Performance expectations (include but are not limited to): 1. To be punctual, present, and focused on duties with appropriate prioritization and completion of tasks 2. To maintain a compassionate and professional demeanor and presentation, which includes appropriate hair, attire and footwear at all times, in the office and when representing the practice. Please be reminded that you are an important and visible representation of a surgical practice for which there is a higher level of expectation for appearance and presentation. 3. To answer all communications, including phone calls, faxes and emails, in a timely fashion 4. To schedule patient appointments, surgeries and procedures with prompt and accurate completion of necessary forms for all surgery and clinic sites 5. To ensure patient rooms are stocked and tidy for each patient visit 6. To be responsible for patient flow during offices and clinics 7. To be meticulous, timely and complete in the maintenance of patient charts a. All verbal and written communication pertaining to the patient’s care must be documented clearly and accurately in the chart, with the date and time of communication b. All patient tests, investigations, reports, consultations, and referrals must be carefully and completely tracked and followed up and results provided to the primary surgeon or, in their absence, to their colleague/locum for review 8. To maintain office and medical supplies and inventory 9. To complete and submit data for billing and forms (including MSP,WSIB and third party) 10. To type and send occasional dictations, memos and, letters 11. To help develop, achieve and, maintain expansion and growth of the aesthetic area of the practice Reference ID: MOA - October [phone number]Expected start date: [phone number]11-01 Job Type: Part-time Salary: per year Schedule: * 8 hour shift * Monday to Friday * No weekends COVID-19 considerations: COVID-19 precautions: - strict adherence to current PHO mandates - masking indoors - frequent of high-contact surfaces, patient areas - plexiglas screens - contactless payment - new employee obligatory vaccination policy Education: * AEC / DEP or Skilled Trade Certificate (Preferred) Language: * English (Required) Work remotely: * No

What does a Surgeon do?

A Surgeon performs preoperative diagnoses on patients to learn what type of surgery they need. Surgeons will then operate to treat the injury, disease, or deformity using surgical instruments. It is up to the discretion of the Surgeon to make any important decisions during surgery. Afterwards, they provide postoperative surgical care and treatment to patients.

Surgeon skills and qualifications

Surgeons must complete years of medical training to perform their job successfully. They also need several additional skills and qualifications, including the following:

  • A degree in medicine 
  • Strong time-management skills 
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Excellent decision-making skills 
  • Great interpersonal skills 
  • Superb written and verbal communication
  • High degree of manual dexterity, hand-eye coordination, and visuospatial awareness 
  • Ability to manage a team effectively

Surgeon experience requirements

To become a licensed Surgeon, candidates spend years working closely with established professionals before they can practice independently. They gain experience through medical school and residency programs as part of their academic requirements. Aspiring Surgeons need to have at least seven years of practical experience. Two years during medical school, and five or more years of experience in a residency.

Surgeon education and training requirements

Surgeons must complete years of schooling before they can operate on a patient themselves. The first thing they must do is get a bachelor’s degree in a field of science. There are specific prerequisite courses to be admitted to medical school, so candidates need to ensure they meet those requirements before advancing. This normally takes four years.

Following this, candidates need to study for and complete the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) to be accepted to one of Canada’s 17 medical schools. Medical school programs take another four years of dedicated study. Two of which are spent working with patients under a Physician’s supervision.

After medical school, aspiring Surgeons must pass the Medical Council of Canada Evaluation Examination (MCCEE). Passing this exam makes them a licensed Physician. Then, they must apply for a residency program at a Canadian hospital, where they work closely with established Surgeons.

The length of a residency depends on their area of specialization. For example, General Surgeons must complete a five-year residency program. Many specialties require this five-year General Surgery residency and an additional two to three years focusing on their chosen specialty.

Finally, Surgeons must complete a certifying examination from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and certification from the regulatory body in their province or territory. A Surgeon is then qualified to practice independently.

Surgeon salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Surgeon in Canada is $235,768 per year. This salary is dependent on specialty, experience, location and employer.

Job description samples for similar positions

If a Surgeon isn’t quite what you’re looking for, some related job descriptions include:

Ready to Hire? Build a Job Description

Surgeon job description FAQs

What areas of medicine can a Surgeon specialize in?

Surgeons can choose to specialize in many areas, including the following: 

  • Cardiothoracic surgery 
  • General surgery 
  • Colon and rectal surgery 
  • Gynecology and obstetrics 
  • Gynecologic oncology 
  • Neurological surgery 
  • Ophthalmic surgery 
  • Oral and maxillofacial surgery 
  • Orthopedic surgery 
  • Otorhinolaryngology 
  • Pediatric surgery 
  • Plastic and maxillofacial surgery 
  • Urology 
  • Vascular surgery

Where can a Surgeon work?

Surgeons primarily work in hospitals, but can also work in private practices, ambulatory surgery centers, or academic institutions to train future Physicians. Surgeons can also work for the military. 

What are the day-to-day duties of a Surgeon?

Surgeons don’t have surgeries scheduled daily. They balance their time by meeting with patients to diagnose problems and follow up with patients after surgery. Surgeons work unusual hours and sometimes and need to be ready to react in emergency situations. They are sometimes called in on their days off when a patient is in need.

Who reports to a Surgeon?

Every surgery requires a surgical team led by the Surgeon. The exact make-up of the team depends on several factors, but mainly on the type of surgery a patient is undergoing. Anesthesiologists, Registered Nurses, Surgical Techs, and Residents/Medical Students all report to a Surgeon.

Job Description Examples

Need help writing a job description for a specific role? Use these job description examples to create your next great job posting. Or if you’re ready to hire, post your job on Indeed.

No search results found