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RCVS to consult on new VN qualifications framework
A consultation will be launched in early July.
Proposals aim to provide a more structured career path

Veterinary professionals are being asked for their views on a new framework for veterinary nursing qualifications post-registration.

The proposals were developed by the RCVS, after the VN Futures research project found that many nurses wanted a more structured and rewarding career path. A consultation will be launched in early July.

In time, the aim is to introduce an Advanced Veterinary Nurse status. The framework serves to offer awards after registration for an enhanced level of veterinary nursing practice, as well as specific modules for nurses at all career levels to study independently for CPD.

Julie Dugmore, director of veterinary nursing, said: “Throughout the VN Futures roadshow events nurses felt they were often entering a career cul-de-sac after a certain amount of time in practice and so the need for further post-registration qualifications which promote excellence and recognise advanced knowledge, skills, competency and experience in designated areas were strongly expressed.

“We have taken this feedback and developed it into a comprehensive framework for two defined post-registration qualifications and are very interested in hearing what both veterinary nurses and veterinary surgeons have to say about all aspects of what we are proposing.”

The two new qualifications included in the framework are a Graduate Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Nursing and a Postgraduate Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Nursing.

Once the responses have been collated, the college says it will incorporate the feedback into the framework for further consideration by the relevant committees and VN Council.

An email with a link to the consultation will be sent to all veterinary nurses and surgeons. Once launched, the survey will also be available at www.rcvs.org.uk/consultations

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Stephen Fry lends voice to frog conservation film

News Story 1
 Comedian and author Stephen Fry has lent his voice to a new animation that hopes to raise awareness of deadly ranavirus, which is threatening the UK’s frogs.

Research by ZSL, who created the short film, suggests that at least 20 per cent of ranavirus cases over the past three decades, could be attributed to human introductions. This includes pond owners introducing fish, frog spawn and plants from other environments.

Amphibian disease expert Dr Stephen Price said: “People can help stop the spread by avoiding moving potentially infected material such as spawn, tadpoles, pond water and plants into their own pond. Disinfecting footwear or pond nets before using them elsewhere will also help.” 

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Scotland to fund OV training

The Scottish Government has revealed it will fund training for new Official Veterinarians (OVs), covering the Essential Skills, Statutory Surveillance and TB Testing.

Funding will also be provided for the revalidation of Essential Skills, as well as TB Testing for existing OVs. This is the second round of financial support from the Scottish Government for OVs.

BVA president Simon Doherty said he is “delighted” with the announcement.

“Official Veterinarians’ work in safeguarding animal health and welfare and ensuring food safety is invaluable,” he added. “This announcement has come at a crucial time, with Brexit and an uncertain future ahead, the role of OVs will be more important than ever in enabling the UK’s trade in animal products.