Dialogue Volume 13 Issue 2 2017 - Page 6

MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT The goal would be that candidates for President are selected based on their suitability for the role, not whether they are public members or physicians. of late as a result of Bill 87, the Protecting Patients Act. Bill 87 sends the clear message that a stronger public presence is necessary to ensure transparency in regulation. Currently all of the College’s statutory committees and panels, including those involved in complaints and discipline, must have at least one public member present at all deliberations. In our submissions to government, we have been clear that the public member perspective is of great value and benefit to this organization. College members should understand that we have also said that physician expertise must be retained. Many of our committees – Quality Assurance; Inquiries, Complaints, and Reports; and Registration, specifically – require strong professional representation in order to accurately and appropriately assess the issues before them: to assess risk, appropriate standards of practice, and suitability of qualifications and training. I am confident that physician representation will always be a key part of medical governance, but it is also increasingly apparent that the drive to modernize regulatory governance will see changes, and lots of them. It is important for this College and its members to be a part of bringing in these changes, rather than find ourselves in the position of reacting to the realities of a new era. Recently, the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) gave us a peek at its vision for regulation. Hoping for enactment by 2020, the CNO envisions an appointed board, much smaller in size (12 members versus the current 39), and made up equally of nurses and public members. The CNO task force charged with the mission of developing the new vision describes its benefits: “A small board intentionally structured to bring different perspectives, composed of members possessing governance competencies, and provided with additional perspectives through feedback from Advisory Groups and stakeholder engagement, will be able to raise and discuss these diverse perspectives more effectively.” This may not be the vision for this College, but it challenges us to consider our future governance. How do we wish to select members of our Council? However selected or elected would a smaller competency-based board better serve our mandate? Much depends on feedback from government, the public and the professions as the health regulatory colleges of Ontario consider the future. Within the next year, we will have a new Registrar. He or she may – or may not – be a medical doctor. What is known, however, is that this person must continue our current Registrar’s work in championing openness and transparency. Dr. Rocco Gerace ushered in a new age of regulation, and distinguished the College as a respected leader in professional regulation. As health-care regulation evolves and societal expectations change, Council will work closely with our new Registrar in ensuring that we continue to be fit for purpose. 6 Dialogue Issue 2, 2017