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Practices honoured for commitment to wellbeing
Awards were presented at the opening ceremony of the SPVS/Veterinary Management Group Congress.
Award winners announced at SPVS/VMG Congress

Three veterinary practices were recognised in the 2018 Vet Wellbeing Awards, recognising their commitment to motivating and engaging their teams, making their practices a better place to work.

Now in their fourth year, the awards are run by the Society of Practising Veterinary Surgeons (SPVS) and the RCVS Mind Matters Initiative.

The winners for the 2018 awards are:
  • small practice: Westpoint Farm Vets Chelmsford
  • medium practice: Beaumont Sainsbury Veterinary Hospital, RVC
  • large practice: Drove Veterinary Hospital, Swindon.

Awards were presented at the opening ceremony of the SPVS/Veterinary Management Group Congress at Celtic Manor in Wales. The winners joined a panel chaired by Emma Mamo, head of workplace wellbeing at the mental health charity Mind, to share their approaches to wellbeing in practice.

Ami Sawran of Westpoint Farm Vets, which won the small practice award, said sharing ideas with other practices is what the awards are all about.

“I looked at case studies of past winners on the awards’ website and picked up new ideas, some of which were quick and easy to implement, others are still work in progress. Entering has been a very positive thing for the whole team as a great deal of collaborative reflection went into the process and we were pleasantly surprised by how much we were already doing; we just weren’t calling it ‘wellbeing’.”

Nick Stuart, speaking on behalf of SPVS, added: “It is good to see so many practices making wellbeing a priority. Involving their teams in planning rotas, encouraging support through buddying and mentoring, and encouraging better communication through social events, charity involvement and effective meetings, are just some examples of how our winners stood out.”


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Public urged to provide homes for swifts

News Story 1
 The RSPB is calling on the public to help provide new homes for swifts, as figures show the birds' numbers have fallen to less than half what they were 20 years ago.

Swifts arrive in the UK late April-May and can spend up to three months in the country. The RSPB attributes the birds’ decline to modern buildings, which lack the nooks and crannies they need to build nests.

While some house builders have agreed to integrate swift homes into new buildings, the RSPB believes more can be done to help this incredible bird. 'Just, 1,000 additional new nest boxes could make a difference’, the charity said.  

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Omeprazole can be prescribed for the management of gastric ulcers in racehorses; however, studies have recently become available that show no direct effect of omeprazole on performance.

Tim Morris, the Authority’s Director of Equine Science and Welfare, commented: “Medication control in horse racing is essential to allow treatment for good welfare but also to ensure fair racing by medication withdrawal before racing. Trainers have asked for more information, especially on anti-ulcer medications, and we have used existing information to make a harmonised detection time for omeprazole available as soon as we could.”