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Telemedicine debate prompts Code of Conduct review
Discussions on telemedicine, including remote prescribing, have prompted a review of the supporting guidance.

‘Anomalies’ found in supporting guidance, RCVS says

Discussions on the development of telemedicine services have prompted a wide-ranging review of the supporting guidance to the RCVS Code of Professional Conduct.

RCVS Council approved the review this week. It will cover several key provisions of the supporting guidance, including 24-hour emergency cover and the interpretation and application of an animal being ‘under the care’ of a veterinary surgeon.

The review was recommended by the Standards Committee, which explored the implications of new technology for animal health and welfare, as well as veterinary regulation.

Committee meetings, a public consultation and external legal advice revealed a number of anomalies in the existing guidance, which could affect how the code is applied across a range of scenarios.

Chair of the Standards Committee, Dr Kate Richards, said: “It became clear to us that we could not consider telemedicine and remote prescribing in isolation and that it raised broader questions around the appropriateness of, and justification for, certain elements of existing RCVS guidance.

"I’m therefore pleased that RCVS Council has decided that the right and responsible approach is first to conduct a full review of these provisions.”

The review is expected to require wide engagement from all relevant sectors and could include a select committee-style hearing in certain areas.

In the meantime, the college stressed that the current Code and guidance remain in full effect. 

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New York to ban sale of foie gras

News Story 1
 New York City councillors have voted overwhelmingly in favour of legislation that will see the ban of foie gras in the city. The move, which comes in response to animal cruelty concerns, will take effect in 2022.


 Councillor Carlina Rivera, who sponsored the legislation, told the New York Times that her bill “tackles the most inhumane process” in the commercial food industry. “This is one of the most violent practices, and it’s done for a purely luxury product,” she said.


 Foie gras is a food product made of the liver of a goose or duck that has been fattened, often by force-feeding. New York City is one of America’s largest markets for the product, with around 1,000 restaurants currently offering it on their menu. 

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News Shorts
Humane Slaughter Association student scholarships open for applications

Applications for the Humane Slaughter Association’s student/trainee Dorothy Sidley Memorial Scholarships are now open.

The Scholarships provide funding to enable students or trainees in the industry to undertake a project aimed at improving the welfare of food animals during marketing, transport and slaughter. The project may be carried out as an integral part of a student's coursework over an academic year, or during the summer break.

The deadline for applications is midnight on the 28 February 2020. To apply and for further information visit www.hsa.org.uk/grants or contact the HSA office.