Strategic Plan

CMTO 2019-2021 Strategic Plan

Regulating health professionals in today’s healthcare environment requires health profession regulators to be agile, accountable and transparent. To continue responding to the needs of the public in an effective way, the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO)’s Council developed a multi-year Strategic Plan (2019-2021) to ensure that the public interest remains the focal point of CMTO’s initiatives.

Council’s long-term vision is that CMTO will be at the forefront of evolving professional regulation – inspiring trust and confidence.

Three interrelated, long-term goals, each of which reflects a strong emphasis on regulating in the public interest, are critical to achieving this vision: Transparency, Quality and Regulatory Modernization. View CMTO’s Strategic Plan.

As part of the 2019-2021 Strategic Plan, CMTO’s Transparency Goal is: “well-informed public and clients of RMTs.”

Outcomes of the Transparency Goal are:

  • CMTO builds public awareness of its mandate and provides information needed to make informed decisions about Massage Therapy, including reliable and credible information about RMTs.
  • CMTO’s decision-making process is open and accountable.
  • CMTO’s culture is transparent and open.
  • CMTO provides information that is easy to understand and accessible.

To achieve this important goal the following strategies have been adopted:

  • Public Information. CMTO launches public awareness campaigns in a variety of formats to increase understanding of the College’s role in protecting the public interest.
  • Public Engagement. CMTO engages with the public and clients of RMTs in the development of new regulatory policies and requirements, including highlighting the feedback received. CMTO evaluates whether the public is receiving the information it needs to make informed decisions.
  • Public Reporting. CMTO strengthens its reporting mechanisms to meet public expectations for increased accountability.
  • Strategy Implementation. CMTO works with the Ministry of Health and other health regulatory colleges to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of health professional regulation in Ontario.

CMTO aims to improve quality of treatment by delivering and ensuring clients of RMTs receive evidence-informed Massage Therapy. The outcome is that RMT clients receive quality care reflecting the best available evidence related to safe and effective health outcomes, professionalism, and ethical conduct through CMTO’s Quality Assurance Program – STRiVE. The strategies outlined below will help achieve this goal:

  • Program Communication and Engagement: CMTO will communicate with and engage the profession to build knowledge, awareness and understanding of the culture of evidence-informed practice and its value to the public.
  • Program Redesign: CMTO will redesign the Quality Assurance Program. The foundations of the program will be CMTO’s Standards of Practice, career-spanning competencies and an evidence-informed approach that integrates research, practitioner experience, client perspective and the practice context.
  • Program Evaluation: CMTO will evaluate the redesigned Quality Assurance Program to determine the effectiveness of evidence-informed practice by Massage Therapists.
  • Program Reporting: CMTO will make the evidence obtained through the program evaluation readily available and accessible and engage with stakeholders regarding the implications of evidence.

The goal of the regulatory modernization theme is the public and RMT clients are protected through ‘balanced and proportionate risk-and outcomes-based regulation.’

The outcome of the Regulatory Modernization goal is that the public is protected and the public interest is advanced through regulation that:

  • Is client-centered, risk- and outcome-based and evidence-informed;
  • Identifies, assesses and prioritizes risks to clients of RMTs and the public interest, and the underlying causes of those risks;
  • Works with system partners to seek the most effective and efficient means of mitigating risks and achieving the desired outcomes; understanding that a regulatory response may not always be the most effective solution;
  • Emphasizes increased knowledge translation of RMTs’ regulatory responsibilities and professionalism.

A list of strategies outlined below will assist with achieving this goal:

  • Change Management. CMTO will facilitate a change management process within the profession to build a strong understanding of proportionate, risk- and outcome-based regulation of Massage Therapy.
  • Risk Assessment. CMTO will undertake a regulatory risk assessment that identifies health and other public interest risks and outcomes, including an assessment of likelihood and impact, to inform CMTO’s programs and services. During the risk assessment, CMTO will engage broadly and transparently with the public, RMT clients, Massage Therapy educational programs, the RMT community, other regulated health professions and the Government of Ontario.
  • Data Analytics. CMTO will collect, analyze and use regulatory data and information to inform risk-and outcome-based regulatory decision-making and will make this data and analysis available and accessible.
  • Practice Resource Framework. CMTO will apply the College’s regulatory modernization principles that reflect proportionate, risk-and outcome-based regulation to the ongoing review of practice resources.

Seven Key Principles to Guide Regulatory Modernization

Draw on sources of regulatory intelligence, data and information, as well as relevant current information about RMT practice.

Gauge the likelihood and impact of harm occurring and its severity and understand how and why the harm occurs.

Understand the context in which the problem arises and the different regulatory and non-regulatory tools that may be available; and then develop and implement, in partnership with other stakeholders(where appropriate) the most effective solutions. Stay focused on the desired outcomes, rather than processes and/or related activities, and measuring and being accountable for those outcomes.

Continually evaluate whether a regulatory intervention is the best and most effective response, and in particular, where non-regulatory measures in partnership with other stakeholders may be more appropriate and effective.

Proactively, transparently, and in simple terms explain what the purpose of a regulatory intervention is, why it is expected to work, and how it will be measured.

Proactively monitor regulatory measures and evolving Massage Therapy practice to ensure that they are achieving the desired outcome and have not resulted in unintended consequences for the public, Massage Therapy clients and/or RMTs.

Systematically and transparently review and evaluate regulatory measures to ensure that these measures remain effective and relevant.



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