Cookie use on MRCVSonline
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies.
If you would like to forward this story on to a friend, simply fill in the form below and click send.

Your friend's email:
Your email:
Your name:
Send Cancel

Vets respond to government's TB control strategy
The BCVA has objected to plans that recently-issued badger control licenses could drop from four years to two.

Plans suggest that intensive culling could end after 2022.

The British Cattle Veterinary Association (BCVA) has responded to government plans to tackle bovine tuberculosis (bTB) in England.

On Thursday (28 May), Defra announced a raft of new measures to eradicate the disease in England by 2038, including work on badger vaccination, increased cattle testing and the acceleration of a cattle vaccine.

The plans, which follow an eight-week consultation, also suggest that licensing of new intensive culls will end after 2022, and that existing cull licenses could be cut short after two years.

In a statement, BCVA welcomed some of the control measures but expressed concern over plans to cease the issuing of new licences.

“We were pleased that some of the planned measures are in line with our recently published bTB document and consultation responses, and we can broadly support some of the proposals during this consultation,” the organisation said. “However, in our consultation response, we cited serious concerns surrounding the lack of significant evidence to support a change to the current wildlife control strategy.

“BCVA illustrated how several proposals could cause disruption to ongoing trials, or even cause regression in the progress that has been made to reduce incidents of bTB on farms throughout the UK, inflicting further hardship on the farming industry, who are already crushed by the impact of this devastating disease."

It continued: “A strategy with proven efficacy could unravel, with regressive results and serious loss of engagement within the farming industry. Consequently, BCVA has serious objections to the proposal that recently issued licences could drop from four years to just two years.”

Under the new plans, Defra also announced funding for a five-year badger vaccination pilot in East Sussex to enable farmers to deploy vaccinations over an area of 250 square kilometres.

The BCVA writes: “BCVA of course supports evidence gathering for large scale, farmer-led vaccination and accepts the Government’s intention to pilot badger vaccination in an area where the four-year cull cycle has concluded. This would be on the basis that there is simultaneous surveillance of disease and data collection to review vaccine efficacy.

“BCVA is not alone in calling on the government to further develop the evidence base for badger vaccination before seeking to remove the option of badger culling, warning that areas may lose the option of supplementary badger culling (SBC) before this can be developed.”


Become a member or log in to add this story to your CPD history

VetCT app offered to students and new graduates

News Story 1
 The VetCT app is being offered for free to students and new veterinary graduates for their first three months in practice. The app provides a service for vets to send case information to a global team of Diploma-holding specialists, who can provide advice and support via instant call-back, text chat, written report, or virtual appointment.

Time on the app is automatically logged as CPD with quarterly certificates being generated for users. Additional services include the ability to book bespoke CPD, significant event reviews, and live training sessions such as surgical procedures.

The app is downloadable for both iOS and Android systems. 

Click here for more...
News Shorts
HORIBA to host CPD webinar

HORIBA has announced that it will host an online CPD meeting focusing on 'Exotic Parasites - The Importance of Testing in The Imported Dog'. Ian Wright (BVMS, MSc, MRCVS), head of ESCCAP UK and Ireland, will present on the importance of testing protocols in diseases of imported dogs.

The meeting will provide attendees with an overview of emerging veterinary diseases with a particular focus on exotic parasites, and discuss the importance of accurate testing protocols and equipment, alongside a final Q&A session.

The webinar will take place on Thursday July 1, from 19.30pm to 21.00pm BST. For free registration and more information visit the Horiba website or