RCVS Question Time

Chair – Anthony Chadwick BVSc Cert VD, MRCVS, founder of ‘The Webinar Vet’;

Panel – President, Col Neil C Smith BVetMed MSc MRCVS; Vice President, Ms Jacqui Molyneux BVSc BSc CertSAS MRCVS; Treasurer, Dr Bradley Viner BVetMed MSc(VetGP) DProf MRCVS; Chief Executive & Secretary, Nick Stace

With Anthony Chadwick posing as the next David Dimbleby, the RCVS question time organised by ‘The Webinar Vet’ was bound to be a success. This was the night you could put any question to the RCVS, providing an opportunity to clarify some of the issues that are so key to us in practice.

There were also some myths which needed dispelling, one of which was presented as a question by one of the audience: ‘Why is it mandatory to always go on a home visit if requested especially as under certain circumstances the safety of the attending vet could be at risk?’. The RCVS responded by directing us to the code of conduct and advising that it is not actually mandatory for a vet to attend a house visit. The decision must be based on an appropriate risk benefit assessment and no vet is expected to ‘risk life or limb’ to attend a house visit. As long as there is a good rationale behind the decision that has been made whilst taking into account our duty to relieve the suffering of animals, then the code of conduct will have been appropriately followed.

Another frequently asked question from the audience centred around the new three tier system on the register of veterinary surgeons. There will now be three categories into which vets will fall, practitioners, RCVS recognised specialists, and the new advanced practitioners’. Old style certificate holders and cert AVP holders will now have their post nominal qualifications removed. To gain advanced practitioner status vets will have to be prove they are actively participating in their area of speciality and will have increased CPD requirements. However those that have gained the old style certificate will also have to attain the ‘A’ module from the Cert AVP over a three year period.

Some of the audience asked ‘why’ it was necessary for old certificate holders to perform the A module. The RCVS responded by stating the A module covers general communication as well as other skills such as interpreting papers and how to use a library. This will help certificate holders do their job even better and as it is an area that most certificate holders will be performing every day, the A module should be relatively easy to achieve.

Other questions included discussions covering the new complaints procedure, CPD, and the main reasons behind client complaints to the RCVS. It was really useful to hear the RCVS responding in a common sense way to questions being asked, giving logical reasons for the steps they have taken. If you want to be involved at the forefront of the profession and the issues we face today, this veterinary webinar is a good place to start. The RCVS is also running question and answer type workshops across the country, if you are interested in perusing this further details can be found on the RCVS website.

The Stethoscope (MRCVS)