Dialogue Volume 14 Issue 2 2018 - Page 5

MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT Dear Colleagues: G Steven Bodley, MD College President Governance needs to focus not on day to day activities, but on matters such as strategy, engagement and ensuring that all College decisions are made in the public interest overnance changes are coming to all health regulators. At this point, it is just a matter of when. My role as President, and indeed the role of Council, is to govern the activity of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. Effective governance requires that the Council (board) provide stra- tegic direction and oversight of the activities of the CPSO, not to ‘run’ it. As Linda Rothstein, a prominent lawyer with exper- tise in the area of governance for not-for-profit organizations recently told Council: “Good governance is having your nose in and your hands off.” Governance of this organiza- tion has evolved as a unique, hybrid structure and members of Council participate in the work of the College through participation on its statutory committees such as Discipline (adjudicative), and Inquiries, Complaints and Reports (central screening of complaints). This structure is mandated by legisla- tion, and any re-tooling will require legislative change and as such, the government will have the final word on what our structure will look like. In fact, the government has already taken its first steps in this direc- tion. For example, Bill 87, the Protecting Patients Act, grants the Minister new governance-related regulatory powers, including the ability to establish the composi- tion and functions of the seven statutory committees. What will this mean to ‘self- regulation’? How did we get to where we are now? It was The Medicine Act of 1867 which created the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. It brought structure to a profession made up of several different groups of practitioners. At its inception, it was felt that the practice of medicine was so complex that only physicians could regulate its practice and so self-regulation was born. These powers were granted to allow the College to ensure its members practised medicine at the highest standard and that the public interest would be protected. Not only would members need to be ISSUE 2, 2018 DIALOGUE 5