CNAR 2020 Plenary Recap: Modernizing Practice Standards in Response to Disruptive Technologies

Representatives from the College of Optometrists of Ontario, the College of Opticians of Ontario, and the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario kicked off the CNAR 2020 Interactive Digital Conference on Wednesday, September 9th, discussing their experience with disruptive technologies.



In an era of emerging disruptive technologies, e-commerce, landmark legal rulings and changing preferences on how patients access their health care, there is an imperative for regulators to adopt a nimble approach.


Direct-to-consumer initiatives, AI, remote practice, and other technologies pose the question as to how regulators can respond in a nimble fashion to a shifting landscape and give guidance to their registrants. They must also ensure quality care continues to be provided, inter-professional collaboration is supported, and, above all, that the public interest is protected.


Representatives from the College of Optometrists of Ontario, the College of Opticians of Ontario, and the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario kicked off the CNAR 2020 Interactive Digital Conference on Wednesday, September 9th, discussing their experience with disruptive technologies.


Interestingly, they started their discussion by pointing out that a disruptor is a changer – not necessarily positive or negative. Starting from the point of neutrality is suggested as the best approach when assessing the impact of a disruptive technology, and analyzing whether it is a regulatory issue.


Regulators can expect disruptive technologies will change the delivery model for services, as well as products. It is critical to ensure that the issue is a regulatory one, and thus falls within the mandate to serve and protect public interest.


Some key points that were identified during the discussion:

  • Collaborate at a national level to increase uniformity regarding expectation for practitioners and the public

  • It is important to address cross-jurisdictional frameworks from a national level

  • Work closely with your Boards and registrants to institute change

  • Ensure transparent and open communication with the public, providing information so they can make informed decisions.

  • Continually scan the environment to understand the implications of new and emerging technologies on registrants and the public and to ensure that the standards keep pace.

If you're interested in learning more about disruption in the regulatory industry, be sure to check out the upcoming keynote address by Eric Ward, Senior Director at Policy Horizons Canada. The session, Fireside Foresight: Exploring how Future Trends and Disruptions May Impact Regulated Industries, will take place online on September 24 at 12pm ET.


For more information about CNAR 2020 or to register, please visit: https://matchboxvirtual.com/cnar-interactive-digital-event-2020/


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