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College Funding Statement – December 21, 2018

December 21, 2018

On December 20, 2018, the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care confirmed that no final decisions have been made about the College’s operational funding and that our funding is under review.

We welcome this new information and hope to receive continued funding from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care.

Ontarians can be confident that the College makes decisions in their best interest. Should we not receive sufficient Ministry funding, a combination of increasing membership fees, using net assets, and finding efficiencies at the College will allow us to continue our work.

The College of Midwives of Ontario will continue to regulate midwifery in the public interest, and to ensure that midwives in Ontario are qualified, skilled, and competent to practise.

Kelly Dobbin
Registrar & CEO
College of Midwives of Ontario


Q&As on the College’s Financial Situation

Has the College lost operational funding from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care?

On December 20, 2018, the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care confirmed that no final decisions have been made about the College’s operational funding and that our funding is under review.

We welcome this new information and hope to receive continued funding from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care.

 

Will this impact the College’s ability to regulate midwifery? 

No. Changes to our operational funding from the Ministry will not impact the public. The College of Midwives of Ontario will continue to regulate midwifery in the public interest, and to ensure that midwives in Ontario are qualified, skilled, and competent to practise. Ontarians can be confident that the College makes decisions in their best interest.

 

What is the College’s role?

The College of Midwives of Ontario is the regulator of midwives in the province of Ontario. We regulate midwives practising in Ontario by ensuring that midwives meet high standards and acting when risks are identified.

All midwives follow the same professional principles and standards of practice. We provide guidance to help them do so. Our purpose is to serve the public and the public interest.

 

How much funding had the College of Midwives of Ontario received from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care in the past?

The College has received operational grants from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care for the past 25 years. We report our financial statements each year in our annual reports. In the 2017-2018 fiscal year, the College received $799,415 from the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care. This year the operational grant request was $750,553.

 

Why does the College of Midwives of Ontario receive funding when other health colleges do not?

Our Annual Report from 2017-2018 speaks to our financial position. From the report: “The College’s revenue is from membership fees, and our relatively low membership numbers compared to other regulated health colleges mean that our revenue is not sufficient to meet our expenses. In acknowledgment of this discrepancy, the Ministry provides funding annually to allow the College to fulfill its mandate of regulating midwifery in the public interest.” You can read our 2017-2018 Annual Report here.

 

Does the College of Midwives of Ontario intend to request government funding forever?

The College of Midwives of Ontario hopes to have the opportunity to work with the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care toward financial independence.

In order to be financially independent of any Ministry funding, we need to both balance our budget and maintain some net assets in the event of unforeseen liabilities such as an unexpected or significant increase of complaints or discipline cases. The College’s revenue is from membership fees, and our relatively low membership numbers compared to other regulated health colleges mean that our revenue is not sufficient to meet our expenses.

The College of Midwives of Ontario is committed to winding down our financial dependence on the Ministry as soon as possible and has previously submitted proposals to the Ministry to achieve this.

 

How much will membership fees increase?

The College’s Council will set fees at an upcoming meeting, likely at its next meeting which will be March 20, 2019. Any fee increase would come into effect for registration renewal on October 1, 2019. As mentioned in our statement, the College has built net assets in recent years. We will operate with a deficit for the remainder of the 2018/19 fiscal year. By using our net assets, we aim to minimize the impact on membership fees while still providing our core services.

 

What is your process to raise fees?

In order to raise membership fees Council needs to amend the College’s Fee and Remuneration By-law. In accordance with the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991, we are obligated to circulate all proposed regulations and certain by-laws to every member of the College at least 60 days before they are approved by the Council. We then need to carefully review feedback received and prepare a report for Council, who will make a final decision. This process is the same every time we raise our fees.

Our Council meets in March, June, October, and December each year. For a fee increase to take effect in time for our October 1 registration renewal deadline, a proposed fee increase will need to be approved for consultation by Council in March. After a 60-day consultation Council can consider a fee increase in June, for implementation for the October 1 membership renewal period.

 

Why did you decide to announce this news at this time?

We had to share the news of our loss of operating funding with our Council and the public at the December meeting in order to meet our timeline to be able to raise fees. (See above.) We need to start making decisions now to be able to ensure we are able to continue to deliver our mandate of regulating in the public interest.

 

How many members does the College of Midwives of Ontario have?

We publish recent membership numbers in our newsletters. Our last newsletter reports a total of 956 registered midwives as of October 22, 2018.