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OAMRS Sonography Announcement – FAQ


According to recently introduced legislation by Dr. Eric Hoskins, the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care in Ontario, all diagnostic medical sonographers will be recognized and regulated by the Registered Health Professions Act (RHPA) with the College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario (CMRTO) starting in January 2018.

This is a historic and meaningful step that will help grow the sonography profession and increase the standard of care to patients in Ontario. As the official voice and association representing the Sonography profession, OAMRS has been lobbying and working with the Ontario government to achieve this regulation on behalf of Sonographers and in the public interest.

Of course, with any change, comes questions. OAMRS will be here every step of the way to make the transition as seamless as possible for its members. To start, we’ve compiled some of the most frequently asked questions and responses below. Still have a question? Get in touch with us at membership@oamrs.org.

Not an OAMRS member? Stay posted on Sonography Regulation updates including free webinar, OAMRS cross-province “road-show” and more.  Learn more
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  1. What benefits does this regulation have for Sonographers?

  2. When will this regulation come into effect?

  3. What are the next steps for Sonographers to secure their title (DMS)?

  4. How did OAMRS achieve this regulation for Sonographers?

  5. What other professions are already part of the Registered Health Professions Act (RHPA)?

  6. I am a Sonographer and member of OAMRS, what does this mean for me?

  7. I am a Sonographer but not (yet) a member of OAMRS, what does this mean for me?

  8. I am training to be a Sonographer, what does this mean for me?

  9. Since I am required to pass the Sonography Canada exam to qualify as a registered Sonographer under CMRTO, does this make me a member of Sonography Canada?

  10. What are the benefits of being an OAMRS member?

  11. What is the difference between OAMRS, CMRTO, CAMRT and Sonography Canada/ ARDMS?

  12. Can I be a member of both Sonography Canada and OAMRS?

  13. How will I become registered with CMRTO as a Sonographer, if I haven't completed an approved education program or the approved examination

  14. In order to keep the credential administered by SC, will sonographers have to pay both CMRTO and SC to maintain licensure?



What benefits does regulation have for Sonographers?

The regulation of Sonographers will raise the profile and credibility of the profession within the healthcare industry, among both colleagues and patients. Having a regulatory body to establish and administer practice standards will create accountabilities for Sonographers and protect the public from incompetent and unqualified practitioners from entering the system. Ultimately regulation will legitimize the educational qualifications required by practitioners, provide title protection and ensure competitive and fair compensation for registered Sonographers.



When will this regulation come into effect?

The Ontario Government has requested that the CMRTO regulate Sonographers beginning January 1, 2018. Starting on this date, there will be a one-year grandparenting period for current Sonographers, which is laid out by the College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario (CMRTO):

The grandparenting permits individuals who have been working competently in diagnostic medical sonography currently, or within the last three years, to apply for registration as a DMS, whether or not they have completed an educational program or passed an approved examination (although satisfactory evidence of competence in diagnostic medical sonography will still have to be provided before registration is accepted). This ensures competent diagnostic medical sonography practitioners are given an opportunity to register without fear of losing their job as a result of new registration requirements.

Anyone applying to register after the grandparenting period must meet all the new registration requirements as outlined in the proposed changes. These requirements will include demonstrating having successfully completed an approved program in diagnostic medical sonography and examinations approved by CMRTO’s Council, and providing evidence of having engaged in clinical practice within the previous five years (or completing the approved program).

By January 2019 all individuals practising as a diagnostic medical sonographer will be required to be registered as a member of the CMRTO in order to be authorized to practise diagnostic medical sonography in Ontario.

 



What are the next steps for Sonographers? 

All diagnostic medical Sonographers practising in Ontario—or individuals currently participating in an education program for diagnostic medical sonography or preparing for an exam in the profession—will soon be required to register with the College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario (CMRTO).

As the regulatory body for Sonographers, the CMRTO will outline the process for Sonographers, including more details about the grandparenting program, in the coming weeks and months.

OAMRS promises to make this transition as simple and seamless as possible for our members. We will work collaboratively with CMRTO to communicate updates to our members by refreshing our FAQ section and sharing relevant news and resources through email, webinars, social media and meetings and events. Leading up to official implementation date of January 1, 2018, the OAMRS team will be travelling to hospitals, universities, and clinics throughout Ontario to communicate what this regulation means and why it’s important for all Sonographers, and those they work with. If you are interested in having OAMRS visit your work/school place please contact membership@oamrs.org.



How was OAMRS successful in its application to regulate Sonographers in Ontario

Sonographers and their supporters have been attempting to achieve this for over 20 years. In 2012, OAMRS stepped in as the official voice of Sonographers in Ontario to make it our mission and have been actively lobbying the Ontario government for the last five years. In 2013 OAMRS submitted a comprehensive proposal for regulation of Sonographers to the Health Professions Regulatory Advisory Council (HPRAC), and after prudent evaluation, approved our proposal and recommended to the Minister of Health that Sonographers be regulated under the CMRTO.

Upon receiving approval from HPRAC, OAMRS spent countless hours and resources over the next few years lobbying on behalf of Sonographers through consultations, lobby days at Queen's Park, attending political fundraisers and meetings with key stakeholders. We traveled around the province to meet with both practitioners and patients to understand their needs and concerns, and worked closely with provincial politicians and bureaucrats to plead our case and gain their support. Finally, in August  2017, the Ontario government announced that Sonographers would join the 28 other regulated health professions under the Registered Health Professions Act (RHPA).



What other professions are already part of the Registered Health Professions Act
(RHPA)?

In Ontario, regulated health professions are governed under the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 (RHPA) and health profession Acts (i.e., Medicine Act, 1991). This legislative framework establishes health regulatory colleges, which regulate the professions in the public interest. Health regulatory colleges are responsible for ensuring that regulated health professionals provide health services in a safe, professional and ethical manner. This includes, among other things, setting standards of practice for the profession and investigating complaints about members of the profession and, where appropriate, disciplining them.


Regulated Health Professions:




I am a Sonographer and member of OAMRS, what does this mean for me?

As valued members, OAMRS will promise to make this transition as simple and seamless as possible. Once the process for Sonographers to become registered is outlined by the CMRTO, we will work collaboratively with CMRTO to communicate this to our members. We will continue to update our FAQ section and communicate regular updates relevant to the profession through email, webinars, social media and meetings and events. Leading up to official implementation date of January 1, 2018, the OAMRS team will be traveling to hospitals, universities, and clinics throughout Ontario to communicate what this regulation means and why it’s important for all Sonographers, and those they work with. If you are interested in having OAMRS visit your work/school place please contact membership@oamrs.org.



I am a Sonographer but not (yet) a member of OAMRS, what does this mean for me?

Regardless of your membership status with OAMRS, we will continue to protect, support and grow the Medical Radiation Sciences profession in Ontario. Health care is a provincial matter and as the recognized voice of Sonographers and MRTs in Ontario, we will continue to advocate for the profession.

OAMRS members receive the added benefit of our support throughout this transition. We will continue to update our FAQ section, communicate regular updates relevant to the profession, and visit hospitals, universities, and clinics throughout Ontario to communicate what this regulation means and why it’s important for all Sonographers, and those they work with.

OAMRS members also get access to:

  • Education - Professional Development is essential to maintaining your professional competence and advancing your career. OAMRS offers:

    • Online Education: Free and discounted webinars, online classes, blogs and virtual conferences.

    • Face-to-Face Education: Traditional classroom-style learning, workshops, Section Education Days, conferences and seminars.

  • Professional Liability Insurance (PLI) – PLI is mandatory to practice in Ontario.  As technology evolves, so does the risks involved in this professional practice. We offer comprehensive insurance packages that are designed to protect you and your personal assets (house, car, savings, wages, etc.) against any claims…even false ones (sadly, it happens). See which package is right for you here.

  • Industry News –  Stay up to date with industry/professional news through OAMRS weekly e-newsletter, “Filter.” We also like to share exclusive offers with our members so make sure you sign up!  

  • Events – Learn about and receive discounted tickets to networking events and volunteer opportunities in your region.

  • Awards –  Celebrating the best in Ontario Medical Radiation Sciences, the OAMRS Awards give professional and prestigious recognition to Sonographers and MRTs who deliver exceptional health care. Award recipients will be presented and recognized at the Annual OAMRS Awards Gala in February, 2018.

  • Discounts - OAMRS has negotiated exclusive discounts available to members only, from life and home insurance to fitness passes and entertainment tickets. See here for more details.



I am training to be a Sonographer, what does this mean for me?

Welcome! This is an exciting time to be a Sonographer. Once you complete your courses, you will be required to write and pass the National exam to qualify for a certificate of registration from the CMRTO.

Before you can start practicing in Ontario you must be registered with the CMRTO.  You will also require Professional Liability Insurance (PLI), which is where we come in! We offer the best value-for-cost packages in the industry, plus you get the added benefit of advocacy in Ontario and our other members perks:

  • Education - Professional Development is essential to maintaining your professional competence and advancing your career. OAMRS offers:

    • Online Education: Free and discounted webinars, online classes, blogs and virtual conferences.

    • Face-to-Face Education: Traditional classroom-style learning, workshops, Section Educations Days, conferences and seminars.

  • Professional Liability Insurance (PLI) – PLI is mandatory to practice in Ontario.  As technology evolves, so does the risks involved in this professional practice. We offer comprehensive insurance packages that are designed to protect you and your personal assets (house, car, savings, wages, etc.) against any claims…even false ones (sadly, it happens). See which package is right for you here.

  • Industry News –  Stay up to date with industry/professional news through OAMRS weekly e-newsletter, “Filter.” We also like to share exclusive offers with our members so make sure you sign up!  

  • Events – Learn about and receive discounted tickets to networking events and volunteer opportunities in your region.

  • Awards –  Celebrating the best in Ontario Medical Radiation Sciences, the OAMRS Awards give professional and prestigious recognition to Sonographers and MRTs who deliver exceptional health care. Award recipients will be presented and recognized at the Annual OAMRS Awards Gala in February, 2018.

  • Discounts - OAMRS has negotiated exclusive discounts available to members only, from life and home insurance to fitness passes and entertainment tickets. See here for more details.

In the meantime, while you’re still a student, consider our Student Membership – it’s free!



Since I am required to pass the Sonography Canada exam to qualify as a registered Sonographer under CMRTO, does this make me a member of Sonography Canada?

Passing the Sonography Canada exam is mandatory to become a registered Sonographer, however membership with Sonography Canada is not required. Association membership is voluntary so you should choose to become a member of whichever association best suits your needs.

As Canada’s health care system is funded and run by the provincial governments, health care is a provincial matter. OAMRS is the recognized voice and advocates for Ontario’s Sonographers, and as healthcare continues to change and funding becomes even more restrained, there has never been a more important time for Sonographers to have a strong presence at the provincial government (Queen’s Park). OAMRS continues to work with the government to ensure the long-term success of Sonographers while providing a cost effective way to achieve maximum patient care.

In addition to continually advocating on behalf of Sonographers, OAMRS provides the highest value-for-cost Professional Liability Insurance (PLI), which is mandatory to purchase before you can practice in Ontario. We also offer professional development opportunities, delivered to you however fits your needs and schedule best - online, face-to-face or in a group setting. Our members receive FREE and discounted courses, as well as other perks through our partners.




What are the benefits of being an OAMRS member?

As Canada’s health care system is funded and run by the provincial governments, health care is a provincial matter. OAMRS is the recognized voice and advocate for Ontario’s Sonographers, and as healthcare continues to change and funding becomes even more restrained, there has never been a more important time for Sonographers and MRTs to have a strong presence at the provincial government (Queen’s Park). OAMRS continues to work with the government to ensure the long-term success of Medical Radiation Science Practitioners while providing a cost effective way to achieve maximum patient care. As the official provincial association, our members receive education, communication and benefits specifically designed for Ontario Practitioners.

As regulation comes into effect, OAMRS members will receive our support throughout this transition. We will continue to update our FAQ section, communicate regular updates relevant to the profession, and will be visiting hospitals, universities, and clinics throughout Ontario to communicate what this regulation means and why it’s important for all Sonographers, and those they work with.

OAMRS members also get access to:

  • Education - Professional Development is essential to maintaining your professional competence and advancing your career. OAMRS offers:

    • Online Education: Free and discounted webinars, online classes, blogs and virtual conferences.

    • Face-to-Face Education: Traditional classroom-style learning, workshops, Section Educations Days, conferences and seminars.

  • Professional Liability Insurance (PLI) – PLI is mandatory to practice in Ontario.  As technology evolves, so does the risks involved in this professional practice. We offer comprehensive insurance packages that are designed to protect you and your personal assets (house, car, savings, wages, etc.) against any claims…even false ones (sadly, it happens). See which package is right for you here.

  • Industry News –  Stay up to date with industry/professional news through OAMRS weekly e-newsletter, “Filter.” We also like to share exclusive offers with our members so make sure you sign up!  

  • Events – Hear about and receive discounted tickets to networking events and volunteer opportunities in your region.

  • Awards –  Celebrating the best in Ontario Medical Radiation Sciences, the OAMRS Awards give professional and prestigious recognition to Sonographers and MRTs who deliver exceptional health care. Award recipients will be presented and recognized at the Annual OAMRS Awards Gala in February, 2018.

  • Discounts - OAMRS has negotiated exclusive discounts available to members only, from life and home insurance to fitness passes and entertainment tickets. See here for more details.




What is the difference between OAMRS, CMRTO, CAMRT, ARDM and Sonography Canada?

Each organization represents a different interest as it relates to the Medical Radiation Sciences profession in Canada. Simply put, OAMRS represents and serves the best interests of MRTs and Sonographers in Ontario.  

OAMRS (Ontario Association of Medical Radiation Sciences)
Healthcare is governed by the Ontario Provincial Government at Queens’ Park which makes health care is a provincial issue. The OAMRS is the recognized voice of the profession in Ontario, ensuring that MRTs and Sonographers continue to grow in importance within the Ontario health care system.  In addition, the OAMRS provides education, benefits and face-to-face workshops and events at a local level throughout the province.

CMRTO (College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario)
The CMRTO represents and protects the public and patients of Ontario. The CMRTO is the regulatory body for medical radiation technologists (MRTs) and as of January 1, 2018, Sonographers in Ontario. Only individuals registered with the College are legally authorized to practice the profession in Ontario. OAMRS collaborates with CMRTO on common issues to ensure that MRTs/Sonographers and the public of Ontario are best served.

CAMRT (Canadian Association of Medical Radiation Technologist)
The CAMRT is the recognized national certifying body for MRTs.   CAMRT are not associated with the Sonography profession.  OAMRS partners with CAMRT to ensure Ontario MRT’s are represented in Ontario and across Canada.

Sonography Canada/ ARDMS (American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography)Sonography Canada and ARDMS are the credentialing bodies for Sonographers in Canada; Sonographers must write and pass the Sonography Canada exam to apply to the CMRTO for their accreditation.




Can I be a member of both Sonography Canada and OAMRS?

You can be a member of both, however, is it not necessary to pay the membership fee for more than one – OAMRS offers all the services you need!

As Canada’s health care system is funded and run by the provincial governments, health care is a provincial matter. OAMRS is the recognized voice and advocate for Ontario’s Sonographers, and as health care continues to change and funding becomes even more restrained, there has never been a more important time for Sonographers and MRTs to have a strong presence at the provincial government (Queen’s Park). OAMRS continues to work with the government to ensure the long-term success of Medical Radiation Science Practitioners while providing a cost effective way to achieve maximum patient care. As the official provincial association, our members receive education, communication and benefits specifically designed for Ontario Practitioners.

OAMRS members also get access to:

  • Education - Professional Development is essential to maintaining your professional competence and advancing your career. OAMRS offers:

    • Online Education: Free and discounted webinars, online classes, blogs and virtual conferences.

    • Face-to-Face Education: Traditional classroom-style learning, workshops, Section Educations Days, conferences and seminars.

  • Professional Liability Insurance (PLI) – PLI is mandatory to practice in Ontario.  As technology evolves, so does the risks involved in this professional practice. We offer comprehensive insurance packages that are designed to protect you and your personal assets (house, car, savings, wages, etc.) against any claims…even false ones (sadly, it happens). See which package is right for you here.

  • Industry News –  Stay up to date with industry/professional news through OAMRS weekly e-newsletter, “Filter.” We also like to share exclusive offers with our members so make sure you sign up!  

  • Events – Hear about and receive discounted tickets to networking events and volunteer opportunities in your region.

  • Awards –  Celebrating the best in Ontario Medical Radiation Sciences, the OAMRS Awards give professional and prestigious recognition to Sonographers and MRTs who deliver exceptional health care. Award recipients will be presented and recognized at the Annual OAMRS Awards Gala in February, 2018.

  • Discounts - OAMRS has negotiated exclusive discounts available to members only, from life and home insurance to fitness passes and entertainment tickets. See here for more details.

 



How will I become registered with CMRTO as a Sonographer, if I haven't completed an approved educational program or the approved examination?

Practicing Sonographers will be subject to the grandparenting guidelines, as laid out by the CMRTO:

The grandparenting permits individuals who have been working competently in diagnostic medical sonography currently, or within the last three years, to apply for registration as a DMS, whether or not they have completed an educational program or passed an approved examination (although satisfactory evidence of competence in diagnostic medical sonography will still have to be provided before registration is accepted). This ensures competent diagnostic medical sonography practitioners are given an opportunity to register without fear of losing their job as a result of new registration requirements.

Anyone applying to register after the grandparenting period must meet all the new registration requirements as outlined in the proposed changes. These requirements will include demonstrating having successfully completed an approved program in diagnostic medical sonography and examinations approved by CMRTO’s Council, and providing evidence of having engaged in clinical practice within the previous five years (or completing the approved program).

By January 2019 all individuals practising as a diagnostic medical sonographer will be required to be registered as a member of the CMRTO in order to be authorized to practise diagnostic medical sonography in Ontario.



In order to keep the credential administered by Sonography Canada (SC), will sonographers have to pay both CMRTO and SC to maintain licensure?

To be a registered Sonographer in Ontario, you will no longer need to maintain credentials from Sonography Canada (SC). Once you register with the CMRTO you will be designated with your new protected title that authorizes you to work in Ontario as a Sonographer. It will be mandatory that you become registered with the CMRTO and acquire your protected title. Registration with SC or the OAMRS to access professional liability insurance (PLI) and education are voluntary. We recommend membership through the OAMRS as the official voice and Association representing Sonographers in Ontario. OAMRS is an excellent value that will provide you with comprehensive PLI and access to free and reduced price education to help you meet your new education and continued competence hours through the CMRTO.

 

Not an OAMRS member?

Stay posted on Sonography Regulation updates including free webinar, OAMRS cross province “road-show” and more.  Learn more

Join OAMRS

Special Regulation Price available until December 31

 

 

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Ontario Association of Medical Radiation Sciences (OAMRS)
Medical Imaging Ed is a division of OAMRS providing high quality CPD for the medical radiation sciences and peace of mind through PLI for Sonographers practicing across the country. 
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