College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario
The College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario regulates the practice of dental hygiene in the interest of the overall health and safety of the public of Ontario.

Self-Service-E  FAQ-E

Strategic Goals

Improving transparency has been a key focus of our strategic goals for the past several years

The College takes the transparency of its processes and activities very seriously and is continuously expanding the nature and extent of the information that it makes available to the public. It will continue to do so as it systematically reviews its processes, considers the evolution of public expectations and analyses legislative initiatives.


Transparency is woven into all we do

Transparency is all about honesty of where we are, where we need to go and what we need to do in order to be a successful regulator.  It’s about having a plan and knowing where we are against that plan and being honest about whether we are making sufficient progress in order to stick with the plan or whether we need to make changes to the plan.




Transparency cultivates trust by Stakeholders

The College’s primary duty is to the public of Ontario and as such, is responsible to see that dental hygienists meet entry-to-practice requirements and remain competent throughout their professional lives. The College must also have a fair and transparent mechanism to deal with complaints about dental hygienists who fall below the expectations of their clients. This College believes that the continuous assessment of these critical areas is necessary for better decision making, which in turn leads to greater effectiveness in fulfilling our responsibility as regulators. As such, the College participates and reports on both internal and external program audits. Timeliness, fairness, transparency and impartiality serve as the standard against which all CDHO decisions and outcomes are measured.

Transparency is extended to the public register to engender trust

The College strongly believes that the public needs access to information with respect to dental hygienists so they can make informed choices when choosing an oral health care provider. Because of this belief, the College continuously collects and analyses registrant data and provides information on the Public Register making it easy for members of the public to access the information they need. In 2016 the College made changes to the public register that included even more information about our dental hygienists by:

  • Placing relevant information from criminal proceedings on the public register through an amendment of the bylaws.
  • Placing significant complaints decisions on the public register through an amendment of the bylaws.
  • Placing additional significant information about practitioners obtainable from other regulators on the public register through an amendment of the bylaws.
  • Placing the full Notice of Hearing on the College website after a practitioner has been referred to discipline for a hearing.

Developing and publishing guidelines articulating when discretionary disclosure of information will be made, including the circumstances where the College will report apparently criminal behaviour by practitioners to the police. 

Better Communication leads to increased transparency

In 2015 the College completed a review and redesign of its website to ensure that all programs and activities are:

  • Described in plain and accessible language
  • Located using an intuitive search engine
  • Available in French
  • Navigated in three clicks or less
  • Accessible on mobile devices

Surveys and focus groups are used regularly by the College to connect with registrants and the public. Examples of this are:

  • an Ipsos survey that measured public perception and trust in dental hygienists, their quality assurance requirement and the College’s ability to regulate
  • an Ipsos Continuing Quality Improvement survey of dental hygienists
  • a Quality Assurance Program survey
  • focus groups on the Quality Assurance Program redesign
  • focus groups for the SMILE Portal

The College participates in a number of public Communication and Outreach programs and initiatives. The most notable is the Public Education Program which links oral health to overall health and uses multi-media initiatives to deliver its message. Public information messages have appeared in:

  • newspaper and magazines such as Canadian Living, Zoomer and Prevention
  • radio
  • television including CP24, the Dr. Marla Shapiro Show and the For Your Life Show



Working with government to improve transparency

Working with Government

On October 4, 2014, the Hon. Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, called on all regulatory health colleges to ensure transparency in college activities. The CDHO has answered the call.