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Changes agreed to registration of EU VNs after Brexit
The option to make up any deficient areas while working in practice will no longer be available.

Applications will be rejected if they significantly differ to UK qualifications

Changes to how veterinary nurses from the European Union join the register after Brexit have been agreed by the RCVS VN Council.

In a meeting of VN Council on Wednesday (6 February), members were invited to consider the closer alignment of the processes for EEA and non-EEA applicants.

Members agreed that in the event of a no-deal Brexit, anyone whose VN qualification is considered similar in content and scope to UK-accredited qualifications would be required to pass the RCVS pre-registration examination.

These applications will continue to be able to apply for permission to work in a veterinary practice while preparing for the examination.

Members also agreed that applications will be rejected if they are significantly different in content and scope to UK-accredited qualifications. The option to make up any deficient areas while working in practice will no longer be available.

The RCVS states that holders of qualifications accredited by the Accreditation Committee for Veterinary Nurse Education (or ACOVENE) will continue to have direct access to the Register as its accreditation criteria are based on UK standards.

Currently all UK veterinary nurse course providers in further and higher education are ACOVENE accredited as well as five educational establishments in the Republic of Ireland and one each in Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and Portugal.

RCVS director of veterinary nursing said: “It is important to remember that the numbers of non-UK EEA veterinary nurses who join the Register each year is much lower than for veterinary surgeons – normally being somewhere between 40 to 60 individuals each year, the majority of whom have qualified on an ACOVENE accredited veterinary nursing course.

“We will continue to welcome applications from those holding other EEA and non-EEA qualifications. If we depart the EU without a deal will be able to introduce more flexibility when deciding whether applicants should be accepted, rejected or accepted on condition of passing the pre-registration examination.

"This will be based on how well aligned their education and clinical experience is with our registration criteria.”

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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.