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Member participation options growing at CMA meeting

Unprecedented opportunities for member engagement and participation will exist at this year’s annual General Council meeting of the Canadian Medical Association.

The 147th annual General Council of the CMA will be held in Ottawa from August 17-20.

Any CMA members who are not already elected delegates to General Council can attend the meeting in person as observers, although voting on motions is reserved for accredited physician delegates. For those unable to attend, the number of options for observing proceedings and providing input has increased year by year.

Members have already been invited to participate in an online survey conducted last month to provide input on the major issues under discussion at this year’s meeting. Results from this poll will be used to inform discussions during the relevant GC sessions.

As they have for several years, members and others will be able to watch live and archived proceedings of the meeting at cma.ca/gc2014.

Members are also encouraged to log on to cma.ca on Monday, 3:15-4:30 (ET) for live streaming of an information session with the CMA Board of Directors. The Members’ Forum has become a popular venue for open and frank discussions of any items that members want to raise with the association leadership. Questions are taken from the floor and can be submitted online to membershour@cma.ca prior to the meeting or during the session.

For the first time this year, members are also invited to participate in a live chat and online voting opportunity during the education session dealing with marijuana for medical purposes to be held Monday from 1:45-3:05 pm (ET). Details will be available at cma.ca/gc2014.

Also for the first time this year, the CMA is initiating a Medical Student Ambassador Program and is inviting 10 Ontario medical students to participate in the meeting.

Regular reports on decisions made at General Council will be posted on cma.ca as always along with stories on the most day’s key issues. For the first time this year, the CMA will also be producing video newscasts for the day’s highlights over the three days that General Council is in session. These newscasts, in addition to major speeches, will be posted to the CMA YouTube channel.

Members who do attend General Council as observers but are not voting delegates will have the opportunity to provide their input on topics that are discussed during the meeting through an electronic voting system.

Forward any comments about this article to: cmanews@cma.ca.