After careful consultation, the OAA is making the difficult choice to cancel its Annual Conference, which had been scheduled for late May in Toronto.
This decision is based on the most recent advice and recommendations from both the federal and provincial Ministries of Health and the Chief Medical Officer of Health, Toronto's Medical Officer of Health, as well as after monitoring the COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation evolving both in Ontario and around the world.
"The health and safety of our members, speakers, guests, and staff is the OAA's priority," says Kathleen Kurtin, OAA President. "Despite the Conference still being more than 10 weeks away, the OAA is exercising an abundance of caution. Given the uncertainty, we need to do the right thing now—this means cancelling an event that brings together more than 1500 people from across the province and the continent."
The OAA fully understands many members attend Conference to fulfil their mandatory Continuing Education learning requirements before the End of Cycle in June. To lessen the impact of cancelling the event, it is currently developing ways to offer alternative online learning opportunities for Structured Learning in line with some of the content prepared for Conference.
This cancellation includes the Annual General Meeting of Members (AGM). The OAA has a regulatory responsibility to conduct this meeting within the 18 months of the last AGM, which was held in May 2019. Discussions are underway with respect to rescheduling, and further information will be provided.
The OAA is currently considering options for its annual awards presentation, the Celebration of Excellence, as well as ways to recognize Newly Licensed Members.
We recognize the Conference is an exciting and important event and that many will be disappointed by this news. The OAA strongly feels this is the correct decision given the current information about this unprecedented situation.