23 September 2014
Note: This document is based on two sources. The first is the document "Proposal for an Organized Research Unit on Medical Physics (MPORU) dated 19 July 1989, which was submitted to the then Dean of Science L. Copley, who forwarded it to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. Formal approval by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research was obtained in October 1989. The wording has been rephrased from that of a proposal to wording which describes an ongoing organization, and the list of institutions of the members has been brought up to date. Items specific to the initial status of the OMPI in 1989 are not reproduced here. The second source is minutes of subsequent meetings of the OMPI Executive. Over the years since 1989 the following have been approved:
- positions of past-Director, Student Representative, Communications officer and Assistant Academic Officer.
- clarification regarding eligibility for membership.
- creation of the Associate Member category.
This document describes the operation of a Carleton University Research Centre, focused on Medical Physics and drawing on individuals from organizations within Carleton and external to it. In 2011 these were:
- Physics Department, Carleton University
- Chalk River Laboratories of Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd.
- Radiation Protection Bureau of Health Canada
- Ionizing Radiation Standards (IRS) Group of the Institute of National Measurement Standards, National Research Council
- The University of Ottawa Heart Institute
- The Ottawa Hospital
- The Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre
- Best Theratronics
- The Institute for Microstructural Sciences, National Research Council
2.0 OMPI Objectives
There is, in the Ottawa area, a significant number of research workers in several of the various fields known as medical physics, specifically in therapy, imaging, radiation biophysics, and radiation standards. Important developments in these areas hold promise for improvements in the diagnosis and understanding of disease and applications of high technology to patient care. It has also become apparent on a national, and perhaps world scale, that a shortage of scientifically trained and clinically skilled physicists is developing. Meetings in the 1980's of area persons led to the formation of a precursor to the OMPI which identified areas of common interest.
The objectives of the OMPI are:
- To promote basic and applied research in those fields of medical physics in which there is local strength, in conformity with the research objectives of the institutions involved.
- To advise the Carleton University Physics Department and the Ottawa Carleton Institute for Physics (OCIP) on matters of Medical Physics.
- To develop collaborative research activity in these fields.
- To promote graduate studies in medical physics.
- To facilitate graduate student placement with a supervisor who is a member of the OMPI.
- To develop laboratory facilities for medical physics.
- To encourage funding from government and from private agencies.
- To organize seminars, meetings and other forms of communication among the members.
It is the belief of those engaged in research in medical physics that the existence of the OMPI will help substantially in the search for research funding in this field. Funding to support research and graduate students has not been easy to find in competition with other more readily recognized fields in medicine and physics.
3.0 OMPI Membership
3.1 Full Membership
The membership consists of individual scientists whose activities and expertise will further the objectives of the OMPI. Membership is by invitation of the Executive and is restricted to those active in the Medical Physics field (via research, graduate student supervision, or substantial participation in the teaching of the graduate courses).
[The following clarification was adopted 14 December 1995]. Membership in the OMPI can be granted to anyone with a relevant degree or relevant work experience that can convince the Executive that they are active in Medical Physics research. This can include PDF's, Physics Residents and Trainees or anyone else at a similar level. PDF's, Physics Residents and Trainees etc. who are clinically active in Medical Physics but who are not doing research should not be granted membership. They should, however, be encouraged to attend OMPI seminars.
3.2 Associate Membership [adopted 19 September 1996]
Scientists not eligible for regular Membership may be invited by the Executive to become Associate Members of the OMPI if it is deemed that such membership would further the objectives of the OMPI. They shall be researchers whose work has application to or is otherwise related to medical physics, but they shall not be medical physicists themselves, as determined by a review of their CV by the Executive.
Presentation of a seminar in the regular OMPI series shall be a prerequisite for membership. Following commencement of membership, Associate Members shall be invited but not required to give seminars in the regular OMPI series. They shall be invited but not required to list their research activities relevant to medical physics in the annual Newsletter; their other research activities will not be reported.
Associate Members may not vote nor serve on the Executive of the OMPI.
4.0 OMPI Management Structure
It is understood that the OMPI reports to the Carleton University Research Office.
An Executive Committee manages the activities of the OMPI.
4.2 Elected positions
The Research Centre elects from its Full members four officers:
- An Executive Director to oversee the operation of the OMPI, guide the relations of OMPI and the institutions from which its members come, coordinate the scientific efforts of the members, and produce the Annual Report.
- An Academic Director to coordinate medical physics graduate student activities with the Carleton University Department of Physics and to represent the organization to the Carleton University Research Office. The OMPI Academic Director must be drawn from the Carleton Medical Physics faculty and, on confirmation by the Chair of the Carleton Physics Department, is also the CAMPEP Program Director.
- A Secretary to record the proceedings of the OMPI, maintain records of the status of members and students, oversee the maintenance of mailing lists, and to assist in producing the Annual Report
- A Communications Officer to coordinate matters of public relations and publicity, including the OMPI website
The MSc and PhD graduate students in medical physics elect a Student Representative.
4.3 Appointed positions
Officers are elected for a period of two years, renewable, with elections taking place in May of alternate years. As far as possible the terms of the officers are staggered. The Executive and OMPI membership are expected to meet regularly.
The Executive appoints the following from the Full members of OMPI:
- The Past-Director to be in charge of elections, ensure the nomination of appropriate members for positions on the Executive, and be a resource of institutional memory to the Executive. The Past-Director usually refers to the previous Executive Director.
- A Seminar Organizer to organize the OMPI seminars and workshops.
- An Assistant Academic Officer who will aid the Academic Director. In particular, the Assistant Academic Officer will be the primary OMPI member responsible for the recruitment of new graduate students and their placement with a research thesis supervisor.
- Observers, as deemed necessary, from OMPI member organizations to ensure as wide representation as possible at the Executive Committee.
4.4 Advisory Board
Because of the commitment of the OMPI to collaborative research and education between the University and local institutions, an Advisory Board was established soon after the formation of the OMPI. The principal function of the Board is to review the activities and research and educational activities of the OMPI and make recommendations on its future directions.
At its last meeting, the composition of the Board was as follows:
- Director of the OMPI,
- Director of OCIP,
- Dean of Science, Carleton University,
- One representative from ORCC,
- One representative from Health Canada,
- One representative from NRC,
- Dean of Medicine, University of Ottawa.
The Advisory Board is chaired by the Director of the OMPI.
5.0 Annual Report
The OMPI publishes an annual report, in conformity with the requirements of the University, to publicize its strengths and accomplishments. The report covers research and graduate studies, with descriptions of the activities of its members and the laboratory facilities available, and a listing of publications.