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Fourth COVID impact survey shows continuing progress towards normality
The fourth COVID impact survey was sent out to 3,077 UK veterinary practices at the beginning of September.

More than half of practices surveyed report increased or steady turnover

Many veterinary practices have reported that business appears to be returning to normal, according to the findings from the RCVS’ fourth survey on the impact of COVID-19 on veterinary practice.

The survey received 241 responses, an eight per cent increase on the 196 responses received for the third COVID impact survey.

The findings revealed that 58 per cent of respondents felt that their practices were operating a ‘near normal’ service, and a further 27 per cent reported a return to ‘business as usual’.

Only a small percentage of practices reported that they had staff who were self-isolating or in quarantine, and just 10 per cent of practices had veterinary surgeons who were currently furloughed, compared to 47 per cent in June.

In June, the large majority of practices reported that their turnover had reduced, whereas findings from the most recent survey show that 56 per cent said turnover had stayed the same or increased. 80 per cent of respondents said that their practice’s cash flow had stayed the same or even improved compared to pre-COVID 19.

Lizzie Lockett, RCVS CEO, said: “The results from this latest survey indicate that, for many practices, business continues to progress towards normality, with over half of respondents saying they were delivering a ‘near normal’ service. 

“However, the pandemic is far from over, with many areas of the UK entering into new periods of greater restriction even since our survey was carried out.

“In light of the ever-changing situation and new regulations set out by the four UK governments, we would encourage as many practices as possible to engage with our fifth survey – scheduled for November – to allow us to best gauge developments and identify where support and further guidance is needed.”

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AWF Student Grant Scheme opens for applications

News Story 1
 The Animal Welfare Foundation (AWF) is inviting applications to its 2021 Student Grant Scheme for innovative projects designed to impact animal welfare. The scheme welcomes proposals from undergraduates studying veterinary and animal welfare degrees, but students from other disciplines are also welcome to apply.

Grants will fund projects on animal welfare topics that are relevant to the veterinary profession and help develop the student's skills as a researcher. This year, the AWF is also accepting projects which are carried out alongside EMS so long as they are supervised. For more information and to apply, visit animalwelfarefoundation.org.uk 

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News Shorts
Bristol Vet School announces new PhD Studentship opportunities

Bristol Veterinary School has announced four new PhD Studentship opportunities with a focus on cattle welfare. The projects include:

Developing a novel approach to improve the welfare of dairy cows; The impact of early life programming on resistance to helminths in ruminant livestock; The impact of change and the ability to deal with it on an individual's affective state and welfare; Harnessing 3D cameras and deep learning for on-the-fly automated body condition and mobility analysis to improve cattle welfare.

For more details and how to apply, visit the University of Bristol's website.