The College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO) is redesigning the Quality Assurance Program (QAP) to reflect best practices within the healthcare environment and to account for the recent changes in the Massage Therapy profession. The new QAP will:
- Assess competencies;
- Promote continuing competence and quality improvement; and
- Incorporate Standards of Practice in order to better reflect the healthcare and Massage Therapy environment.
What does the new QAP look like?
The Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991, outlines what each College must include in a QAP. CMTO will meet these requirements in the following ways:
- Self-Assessment: A revised, easy to use, Self-Assessment Tool will be sent out for stakeholder feedback shortly. This tool leads Massage Therapists (RMTs or MTs) through the Essential Competencies of practice and allows MTs to score themselves on their own performance based on each competency by describing what they do in their day-to-day practice to meet these competencies.
- Professional Development/Continuing Education:
a. A Learning/Action Plan will guide the MT to establish goals and identify the “actions” they plan to take to achieve these goals based on learning needs. MTs will record what they did to complete the learning goal(s), reflect on what was learned and indicate how the learning will be incorporated into their practice.
b. Mandatory Education Module: A dynamic, interactive learning module that focuses on a topic relevant to client safety, MT’s practice, legislation, ethics and professionalism, etc. The topic/module will change annually and will provide MTs with current information needed in practice. MTs are encouraged to work through the information and scenarios with their peers and discuss the application of the information to their own unique practice setting.
- Peer/Practice Assessment: This component is still in the process of being finalized. We expect there will be an assessment process where a peer (MT) assesses how one’s practice aligns with the Standards of Practice, legislation and regulation and will provide mentorship where needed.
As a result of CMTO’s new approach, outlined below, effective July 1st, 2018, the collection of Continuing Education Units (CEUs) will be discontinued in preparation for the new QAP.
Why are the CEU cycles/reporting ending?
Evidence shows that collecting units or hours of education does not determine a practitioner’s level of competency or abilities and that those hours of learning do not translate into the way someone performs their job or provides care for their clients. The new QAP will allow MTs to determine how much and what type(s) of learning they need to undertake to become more effective at providing safe, professional and evidence-informed treatment to their clients that meets the requirements of the Essential Competencies of practice. MTs will also be asked to identify their strengths, areas for professional development and to form meaningful Learning/Action Plans that meet their learning objectives. CMTO will provide resources and education to assist MTs in preparing their Learning/Action Plans and to understand the new QAP.
What should MTs do with their completed CEUs?
The CEUs that have already been completed will still be useful in the following ways:
- MTs can apply what they have learned from these activities into their practice.
- The first two QAP tools, the Self-Assessment Tool and Learning/Action Plan, will be launched later in 2018, and MTs will have the opportunity to try the new Learning Management System that will house these tools. Once the new system is available for testing, MTs can choose to enter their completed CEU activities into the new system as part of their learning activities.
- MTs can reflect on learning activities already completed to help identify strengths and learning opportunities and what they would like to focus on in the next few years. This will help MTs identify their learning needs and complete the new QAP tools.
What are the benefits of the new QAP?
- MTs will receive core education around the essential competencies that is consistent to all registrants to ensure a minimum level of knowledge is achieved.
- Greater flexibility to add customized learning to meet specific client and professional needs. The learning activities selected will be more relevant to the MTs’ practice environment and can better suit work/life balance by removing the minimum number of hours required.
- The new QAP tools will be housed in a new on-line learning platform that will be user-friendly and will allow for easier access to learning resources and tools.
- Personal cost savings as there will be no minimum number of hours spent on learning activities, allowing MTs to be more creative in the activities chosen – some of which may be of little or no cost.
If you have questions, please contact:
Marnie Lofsky, Director, Professional Practice
Jonathan Norton, Manager, Professional Practice