Members of Optometry Victoria (O Vic) and Optometry South Australia (O SA) will be asked to consider the possibility of their State Associations amalgamating.
Chief Executive Officers Pete Haydon (O Vic) and Libby Boschen (O SA) said they believed amalgamation would “future proof ” the State Associations by increasing operational effectiveness and achieving appropriate economies of scale.
Discussions first began in 2015 and involved Optometry Tasmania, however Tasmania decided not to pursue the amalgamation.
More recently, Mr. Haydon and Ms.Boschen have been working closely with Optometry Australia to determine a possible amalgamated structure which would see the two State Associations combining to form a new entity (yet to be named).
In an article published in Scope, Murray Smith, President of Optometry Victoria said, “there are financial and operational efficiencies to be gained from amalgamation. Some functions can be centralised, delivering economies of scale such as data base maintenance, membership subscription processing, bookkeeping, audit processes and the organisation of major member events including conferences… Decisions will need to be made on the Board structure of an amalgamated Association; how State based conferences and seminars will be most effectively delivered, and how State-owned assets will be treated under a new structure.”
Ms. Boschen said since commencing discussions with members around the proposed amalgamation, feedback had been overwhelmingly positive.
“There is a way to go – we are planning governance structures and we will take a proposed model of amalgamation to members in the second half of the year for their ratification. In the meantime, Pete and I are welcoming informal discussion and feedback from our members.”