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The Code of Professional Conduct

1 June 2019

I would like to take the opportunity to respond to a quotation that appeared in a recent edition of Vet Record in regard to the Code of Professional Conduct; the quote being that there was ‘no injunction to read it. No copy is distributed. It’s not even described as essential reading [by the RCVS]’ (VR, 4 May 2019, vol 184, p 537).

We do make very significant efforts to tell our new registrants about the code and its importance to them as professionals as well as to the public and the animals they serve. For example, all non-UK EU vets joining the Register attend a meeting at the RCVS where members of our registration department tell them about the Code of Professional Conduct and its importance.

A welcome email is also sent to EU registrants within 24 hours of them being admitted to the Register in which they are...

Categories: Journal news

'Blurred lines on registering practice premises

1 June 2019

Regarding the news article discussing the need to register one’s home premises if drugs are stored for the use of one’s own pets (VR, 4 May 2019, vol 184, p 541).

I am currently not working in a practice. I asked the BVA if I was allowed to write prescriptions for my own dogs. I was told that I could, so I order drugs for my dogs via an online pharmacy. The amount of drugs in my home is comparable to that kept by any client.

Internet pharmacies sell drugs to the public at a cost cheaper than the veterinary wholesalers.

Categories: Journal news

'Blurred lines on registering practice premises

1 June 2019

I agree wholeheartedly with Gareth Harries (VR, 4 May 2019, vol 184, p 541) on the issue of registering a home address as a practice premises. I would also query why the RCVS wishes to insist that if you order from a wholesaler your home has to be registered as a practice.

There are plenty of vets who need to be able to purchase medicines for their own animals. Previously, independent practices would have sold vets medicines at cost for their own animals. Within corporate practices, rules do not allow this to happen, and the present ridiculous situation has arisen.

Sourcing medicines from local practices for vets’ own animals as advised by the RCVS is a mockery of the rules in itself. Do we take our pets to a practice or have a vet make a visit to prove the animals are ‘under their care’ with a mock consultation?...

Categories: Journal news

Releasing grey squirrels into the wild

1 June 2019

I write in support of Maureen Hutchison (VR, 25 May 2019, vol 184, p 655), and also in support of the grey squirrel. She argues against the ridiculous Defra proposal that grey squirrels if taken to a vet or rescue centre should either be euthanased or kept in captivity for the rest of their lives. As she says there are two to three million grey squirrels in the country so what difference will the odd one make?

More to the point is why are we persecuting so called ‘non-native’ species such as the grey squirrel? How long does a species have to live in this country until it is deemed to be ‘native’?

Grey squirrels are fun, entertaining, at times irritating and annoying, but why can’t we just leave them alone?

Categories: Journal news

Herriots way inspired a generation

1 June 2019

The recent letters from Maureen Aitken (VR, 4 May 2019, vol 184, p 599) and others (VR, 11 May 2019, vol 184, pp 593-594), expressing sentiments about Alf Wight are important. They help to explain his books and motivations – he was a storyteller, and one with an expert knowledge of his subject, not a practice economics guru. But more importantly they help us to understand the man. I therefore found it unfortunate that others, whom I doubt ever met and spoke with him, commented about his mental health (VR, 27 April 2019, vol 184, p 514).

Alf Wight was a storyteller, and one with an expert knowledge of his subject, not a practice economics guru

A few years ago I wrote a book on notable members of the British 20th century veterinary profession.1 One of these was Wight.

Wight was never seduced by his fame,...

Categories: Journal news

Death notice

1 June 2019

Bevin On 15 April 2019, Timothy Richard Bevin, BVSc, DTVM, MRCVS, of Market Harborough, Leicestershire. Mr Bevin qualified from Liverpool in 1966.

doi: 10.1136/vr.l3150

Categories: Journal news

John Michael Pemble

1 June 2019

A lifelong practitioner whose interest in surgery and practice led him to get involved with the Society of Practising Veterinary Surgeons.

Categories: Journal news

BVA Welsh Branch discusses Brexit and key policy issues with Assembly Members

1 June 2019

A fantastic turnout of BVA Welsh Branch Council members welcomed Assembly Members from across the main political parties in Wales to a briefing at the National Assembly for Wales Tŷ Hywel building on 14 May. Helena Cotton, BVA Public Affairs Manager, reports.

Categories: Journal news

BVA launches a new award for inspirational young vets

1 June 2019

Adam Rawcliffe, BVA Corporate Partnerships Manager, introduces BVA’s newest award.

Categories: Journal news

BVA talks Team Vet with immigration minister

1 June 2019

BVA had a really positive meeting with Immigration Minister and Honorary Associate Caroline Nokes at the Home Office in May. Mandy Ryan, BVA head of media and PA, summarises the discussions.

Categories: Journal news

Vet Futures news: diverse and rewarding careers

1 June 2019

The Vet Futures report noted the lack of diversity in the veterinary professions compared to the national average and set out an ambition ‘that our diverse veterinary professionals enjoy a broad range of exciting career paths, each one offering stimulating and well-rewarded work’.

Since then BVA and RCVS have been undertaking a variety of projects aimed at supporting the veterinary workforce, and in recent months our attention has focused on improving diversity and inclusion.

Last year, the high-profile case of racism directed at vet Navaratnam Partheeban hit the headlines and prompted members to ask what was being done to tackle these issues. We decided we needed to better understand the problems in order to address them.

Earlier this year we asked those who had experienced or witnessed discrimination to anonymously report those incidents to us. The response was extraordinary, with 1305 incidents reported by 721 individuals. To gain a...

Categories: Journal news

Divisional notices

1 June 2019

Divisional notices for BVA territorial and specialist divisions are published in BVA News. Notices should be e-mailed to divisionalnotices@bva.co.uk at least five weeks before each meeting.

Essex Veterinary Society

Pimms and physio by the hydrotherapy pool

Evening meeting with speakers Claire Larkins and Catie Frances, who will present the facilities at the Blue Bear Rehabilitation Centre. There will then be an opportunity to view the centre.

•12 June 2019, 19.30 for 20.30

Blue Bear Rehabilitation Centre, 73c London Road, Copford CO6 1LG Details from Lorraine Liles, telephone 07947 788 5033, email: essexvetsoc2@hotmail.co.uk

Categories: Journal news

One year on: progress on BVAs health and disease monitoring position

1 June 2019

A year after BVA published its position paper on animal health and disease monitoring, BVA Policy Officer Hayley Atkin looks back on how the recommendations have progressed over the past 12 months.

Categories: Journal news

Remembering the successes

1 June 2019

Grace Harman, Young Vet Network representative on BVA Council, provides a timely reminder of the solace of successful cases.

Categories: Journal news

New-look poster on responsible antimicrobial use

1 June 2019

Following the launch of BVA’s updated position on responsible antimicrobial use in food-producing animals, we have redesigned our popular ‘7-point plan’ poster for veterinary practices.

Categories: Journal news

Supporting vets to be 'sustainability-savvy

1 June 2019

Last month BVA launched a position on UK sustainable animal agriculture and it’s been a hot topic for discussion among members. Hayley Atkin, BVA Policy Officer, encourages you to get involved.

Categories: Journal news

Advanced nursing qualifications agreed

23 May 2019

By Josh Loeb

Plans to create two new advanced veterinary nursing qualifications have been agreed by the RCVS veterinary nurses council.

The two post-registration qualifications – a graduate certificate and postgraduate certificate in advanced veterinary nursing – can now be offered by higher and further education providers after the college agreed a framework for them to use.

Registered veterinary nurses (RVNs) who gain one or other of the new qualifications – studies for which could be spread over a period of two years and cost thousands of pounds in fees – would have no guarantee they would necessarily earn more as a result.

Schedule 3 confusion

Veterinary nursing students or prospective registered veterinary nurses (RVNs) from overseas could be undertaking Schedule 3 duties in a legally grey area.

The college’s legislation working party is to consider the issue in regard to temporary student enrolment and the ‘period of...

Categories: Journal news

RCVS to introduce new CPD rules next year

23 May 2019

By Josh Loeb

The RCVS is set to roll out a new model of continuing professional development (CPD) for all vet professionals.

The new model is being phased in from January 2020, when it will be optional, but it will become obligatory from 2022.

The college said the new CPD model will require vets and vet nurses to undertake more reflective learning as well as measure their impact on practice and patient outcomes.

Current requirements ask that vets undertake a minimum of 105 hours and registered vet nurses (RVNs) 45 hours over a rolling three-year period. This requirement is being retained under the new arrangements.

However, the new system will move away from the ‘inputs-based model’ and, instead, demand a more ‘outcomes-based’ reflective approach.

Spearheaded by Stephen May, who chaired the college’s CPD policy working party and who is currently senior vice president of the RCVS, the new approach...

Categories: Journal news

Octopus farms: a move too far?

23 May 2019

Environmental and welfare concerns associated with efforts to farm octopuses commercially have led to a call for an end to investment in this area. Kathryn Clark reports

Categories: Journal news

'Ditch the blame culture to tackle AMR

23 May 2019

By Kathryn Clark

The importance of a no-blame culture in tackling antimicrobial resistance (AMR) has been emphasised by the BVA in an updated position on responsible antimicrobial use in food-producing animals.

‘AMR is a shared problem that must be addressed by medical, veterinary and environmental professionals collaboratively and not subject to a culture of blame,’ said BVA president Simon Doherty.

The updated position consolidates and expands on the BVA’s existing AMR policies. It sets out 15 overarching recommendations on responsible antimicrobial stewardship for vets, farmers and government.

It reiterates that vets should continue to be guided by the seven principles of responsible antimicrobial use. To support this, the BVA has released a new-look seven-point plan poster (pictured) for vets to display in their practices.

We must maintain momentum in the face of the ongoing global threat posed by AMR

‘We must maintain momentum in the face of the...

Categories: Journal news