What is the role of Council?
The CRTO Council acts like a Board of Directors. The role of the Council is to oversee the regulation of the practice of Respiratory Therapy in the public interest and to set overall policy direction for the CRTO. As a self-regulated profession, Registered Respiratory Therapists hold a majority of Council positions; nine Respiratory Therapists elected by their peers and 5-8 public members appointed by government. The Council elects the members of the Executive Committee and the Executive Committee in turn appoints the members of the other six statutory Committees.
What is the role and composition of the seven statutory committees?
The statutory committees are made up of Council Members (Respiratory Therapists and public members) and Non-Council Committee Members. The Non-Council Committee Members are Respiratory Therapists elected by their peers and have an equal voice at the committee table. The roles of the seven statutory Committees are as follows:
Executive Committee – Reporting to Council, the Executive Committee, in consultation with the Registrar & CEO oversees the administration of the College. The Executive Committee may exercise all the powers of Council on matters that require immediate attention except making, amending or revoking regulations or by-laws. The President and Vice-President, elected by the Council, are automatically Executive members.
Registration Committee – This Committee directs the Registrar to issue (or not) certificates of registration to applicants and may impose terms, conditions and limitations on certificates of registration. The Registration Committee also reviews and develops policies related to registration such as those on approval of RT educational programs, Prior Learning Assessment and registration criteria.
Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee (ICRC) – This Committee is responsible for handling Member-specific concerns that are brought to the attention of the Registrar through complaints or reports, such as, mandatory termination reports. The ICRC will consider concerns related to the Member’s conduct, capacity and competence and determine if a referral to the Discipline or Fitness to Practice Committee is warranted.
Discipline Committee – Panels of this Committee are responsible for hearing and determining allegations of professional misconduct or incompetence referred by the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee. Discipline hearings are open to the public. Proceedings against a Member before the Discipline Committee panel are civil in nature. Based on evidence submitted, the panel must arrive at a decision and decide on a penalty in the case of a finding.
Fitness to Practise Committee – On referral from a Panel of the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee, the Fitness to Practise Committee conducts hearings to determine whether a member is incapacitated, i.e., suffering from a physical or mental condition or disorder that makes it desirable in the interest of the public, that the member no longer be allowed to practise, or that the member’s practice be restricted. A Fitness to Practise hearing is generally closed to the public unless the member requests to have it open to the public.
Quality Assurance Committee – The Quality Assurance Committee is responsible for developing and implementing an approved Quality Assurance Program that promotes continuing competence of members and assures quality of practice of the profession. The QA Committee also conducts a review of the effectiveness of the Quality Assurance Program. Annually the Committee randomly selects Members (10% of the eligible membership) to submit their Professional Portfolios and completion of the Professional Standards Assessment.
Patients Relations Committee – This Committee is responsible for developing, establishing and maintaining a Patient Relations Program, including measures for preventing and/or dealing with sexual abuse of patients by Members of the CRTO and for administering funding for therapy and counseling for patients who have been sexually abused by members. This Committee also advises Council on Communications Plans, and develops many of the CRTO’s Professional Practice Guidelines.
What is the role of staff?
CRTO staff implement the decisions and policies of Council, provide support to Council & Committees and are responsible for the day-to-day operations of the CRTO. For example, staff provide professional practice advice, process registration applications, investigate complaints, prepare communication tools, are involved in administration of the legislation, act as a liaison between the CRTO and stakeholders, and respond to numerous inquiries from Members and the public.
What are the main responsibilities of Council and Committee Members?
Council or Non-Council Committee Members have a general responsibility to become familiar with the objectives of the CRTO as well as relevant legislation and policies. Also, Council/Non-Council Committee Members are expected to prepare themselves for meetings by reading the materials that are pre-circulated and participate actively in the deliberations and decisions. Depending on the committee, Members may be participating in the development, establishment and maintenance of policies, standards and regulations. Committees such as Registration, Quality Assurance, Complaints and Discipline break into panels to consider specific referrals regarding Members’ practice. Maintaining confidentiality and exercising sound judgment is key.
What is the time commitment?
Council meets four times a year. In addition, elected members are appointed to at least one statutory committee. The number of committee meetings per year (which may include panels and/or hearings) varies according to workload. Generally speaking Council Members should expect to devote an average of 6 to 10 days each year and Non-Council Committee Members an average of 4 to 8 days per year depending on the committee. The term of office is three years.
How are committee appointments determined?
Each year Council and Non-Council Committee Members are asked to submit a committee preference form. The Executive Committee then reviews the results and appoints members to the seven statutory committees taking into consideration preferences, experience, committee workload and succession planning.
What kind of support do Council and Committee Members receive?
Each Council/Non-Council Committee Member is given a comprehensive orientation and staff are assigned to support each committee. Council/Non-Council Committee Members are provided with an agenda and relevant documentation electronically prior to each meeting in order to be informed and prepared in advance. Increasingly much CRTO communication is conducted electronically (email and intranet) and a number of panel discussions are held by teleconference.
Are Council/Committee Members reimbursed for travel costs?
Yes. Meetings are held in Toronto and Council/Non-Council Committee Members are reimbursed for all reasonable travel and accommodation expenses. In addition, they are paid a per diem of $200.00 ($300.00 for committee Chairs, who have additional responsibilities) for attendance at meetings and are given a meal allowance of up to $40.00 per day. The CRTO pays the expenses of the profession members and public members’ travel expenses and honoraria are paid by the Ontario government.