News + Announcements

OSMH Proposed Updating Bylaws to Follow Best Practices

(Orillia, ON) – As shared in our recent Fireside Chat on December 19th, Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital’s (OSMH) Board of Directors is reviewing its bylaws and considering removing paid corporate memberships. This would ensure the Board is following governance best practices for public hospitals that are aligned with other public hospitals in the province.

Currently, OSMH’s governance structure is outdated and includes a model where individuals can purchase membership to join the OSMH Corporation and influence decisions made on behalf of the hospital. Only two hospitals, including OSMH, continue to use this model. Many have moved away from this model because it does not always serve the best interest of the hospital or patients and creates a financial inequity to participating in hospital governance.

Board members play an important role in the governance of a hospital and are responsible for the oversight of the organization, including but not limited to strategy, performance and financial risk. It is critical that our Board members represent our community and have the skills required to govern. The existing paid corporate membership model allows Board members to be elected without undergoing a rigorous application process.

The corporate membership model also creates a financial barrier and limits those who can participate in the hospital’s engagement process. By updating our bylaws, we can ensure that engagement with our community is equitable and accessible for all. This is incredibly important as we plan for a new hospital to serve our community.

“We are very excited about the future of Soldiers,” said Ligaya Byrch, OSMH Board Chair. “That’s why it is so important that the entire community understands why we are exploring this change. We need to ensure we can continue to make progress on our important work in the best interest of our patients and community.”

As an organization, we value the thoughts and ideas of our community members and will continue to provide opportunities for patients and families to inform the future direction of our hospital.

Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions to Lisa Thomson-Roop, Community Relations Specialist,