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Half of veterinary professionals ‘do not feel part of a respected community’
Client expectations were the main thing veterinary professionals said they would change about their vocation.
Survey finds client expectations are a particular problem  

Just under half of veterinary professionals do not feel part of a respected community, according to new research by VET Festival.

An online survey carried out in December reveals that while 53 per cent of professionals feel valued by their local community and respected by clients, 47 per cent do not.

Explaining why they felt this way, respondents frequently cited misconceptions about high fees, client demands and social media criticism.

VET Festival, which carried out the survey with Centaur Services, is an annual outdoor conference founded by Professor Noel Fitzpatrick.

The survey - which garnered responses from vets, nurses, rehabilitation professionals, practice managers, assistants and students - also revealed that around half of the respondents (51 per cent) felt their vocation in veterinary medicine had met their early expectations. Of these, 60 per cent had graduated over 20 years ago, while 40 per cent qualified less than five years ago.

Among those who felt reality did not match their expectations, the most common reasons given were low work-life balance, financial concerns and high demands from clients.

In addition, the expectations of clients were the main thing veterinary professionals would change about their vocation. One respondent said: “I feel as a profession our integrity is continually questioned in the public and in the media. There is a shift in client expectations above what we can provide and they can afford and this is perceived as vets being greedy.”

Nonetheless, 91 per cent of respondents said they were proud to work in the veterinary profession. The most important aspirations for veterinary professionals were cited as ‘making a difference to animals’ lives’, ‘a healthy work-life balance’ and ‘personal skill development’.

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Report: A third of Welsh birds are in decline

News Story 1
 A report by RSPB Cymru and partnering ornithology organisations has revealed that a third of bird species in Wales are in significant decline.

90 per cent of Wales is farmed and there is now pressure to implement new land management policies that will aid in nature restoration.

Patrick Lindley, Maritime Ornithologist for Natural Resources Wales, commented: “The problems that confront UK birds, whether they are breeding or non-breeding, are pressure and threats that confront entire ecosystems.

“Birds are a great indicator to the health of our environment. The continued population declines of birds of farmed, woodland and upland habitats suggest there are large geographic themes that are having a detrimental impact.”  

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News Shorts
BSAVA announces winner of 2019 Bourgelat Award

One of the world’s leading small animal medicine specialists is set to receive the prestigious Bourgelat Award at BSAVA Congress 2019.

Professor Mike Herrtage will be recognised for his major research into metabolic and endocrine diseases, including diabetes mellitus, Cushing’s disease and Addison’s disease.

During his career, Prof Herrtage has co-authored more than 100 scientific papers and written more than 200 other publications such as abstracts, books and chapters. He also continues to be a source of inspiration for thousands of undergraduate and postgraduate veterinary surgeons.