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Survey sheds light on global veterinary wellbeing
Delegates at the WSAVA World Congress were encouraged to take control of their wellbeing by supporting their colleagues.
Younger professionals, females and veterinary nurses ‘most seriously affected’

The first global survey of veterinary wellness has revealed that thousands of veterinary professionals across the world are experiencing stress and reduced wellbeing.

Conducted by the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA), the survey suggests those ‘most seriously affected’ are younger professionals, females and veterinary nurses. It also highlights a reluctance among professionals in Asia and Africa to discuss mental health, an issue that described by the WSAVA as 'of significant concern’.

The results were presented by Dr Nienke Endenburg, co-chair of the WSAVA’s Professional Wellness Group (PWG), during the WSAVA World Congress in Toronto (17 July). During a subsequent panel discussion, delegates were encouraged to take control of their wellbeing by supporting their colleagues, making smart career choices and committing to ‘self-care’.

Dr Endenburg said: “Our research – the first global study of veterinary wellness – confirms a probable correlation between a career in veterinary medicine and an elevated risk of mental health issues. It’s likely that this is caused by a combination of factors including working environment, personal characteristics and client pressures.

“We are very concerned at the impact this is having on thousands of veterinary professionals worldwide and believe it must be addressed without delay.”

She continued: “The study has provided us with some very important data which we are now analyzing in more detail and preparing for scientific publication. We will then develop an urgent action plan.

“As part of the plan, we will share the helpful resources already created by some veterinary associations. We will also develop additional tools to ensure all veterinary healthcare team members can access help when they have – or ideally before they have – a mental health problem. 

“We hope our efforts will be another important step towards bringing about positive change and enhancing the well-being of all veterinarians globally.”

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BEVA gives vets access to free membership for three months

News Story 1
 BEVA has announced that it is cutting membership renewal charges for the next three months in order to support all veterinary professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Memberships for all existing BEVA members will be extended until 30 June 2020. Veterinary professionals who are not members of BEVA will also be able to sign up for a free membership until 30 June 2020.

BEVA president Tim Mair said: "In this extraordinary time of global crisis our profession, as with many industries, is under immense pressure. By offering free membership we are giving equine vets easy access to a wealth of supportive resources and online CPD."

To sign up please visit the BEVA website.

Image (c) BEVA. 

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LOVE Gorgie Farm seeking veterinary volunteers

LOVE Gorgie Farm in Edinburgh is looking for people with veterinary and animal care experience, who would be interested in volunteering to help care for its animals during these difficult times.

The community-owned charity farm opened to the public only last month, but decided to close temporarily amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Its three-person team is working to care for the animals behind the scenes and the farm is now operating as a food bank for the public, delivering free breakfasts to local school children.

In an effort to build a contingency plan to secure the welfare of its animals, LOVE Gorgie Farm is looking for volunteers who would be able to step in if any team members fell sick or needed to self-isolate.

Those interested in volunteering are asked to contact gorgie@l-o-v-e.org.uk