Currently the title`veterinary nurse’ it is not protected in law, and therefore anyone, including those lacking the relevant training and education, can refer to themselves as a veterinary nurse and it is not regulated in any way.
The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons launched a petition asking the Government to introduce new legislation to regulate and protect the veterinary nurse title. However, the Government responded that they did not recommend that Parliament should give legal protection to the title. You can read their full response here.
We are asking that you sign the petition to protect the veterinary nurse title . They need 100,000 signatures by 14th February latest for it to be debated in Parliament.
At The Mayhew our veterinary staff, as well as the profession as a whole, feel very strongly about the legal protection of the title and believe that legislation should be passed to protect it. We believe that it is inappropriate for people without extensive and formal training to describe themselves as a veterinary nurse and by doing so could put animal welfare at risk.
In our Community Vet Clinic, we only employ Registered Veterinary Nurses (RVNs) and nurses in training to become RVNs. Veterinary nurses are a vital part of a veterinary team and can give medical treatment to, or carry out minor surgery on, animals.
RVNs work hard for their registered status, achieving high standards of education and professional conduct. This means that our RVNs give the highest quality care and commitment to the thousands of animals every year that come into The Mayhew Vet Clinic. We feel that it is paramount that our animals get the professional care they deserve being looked after by our team of professional nurses.
Gillian Rich RVN, Head Veterinary Nurse at The Mayhew, says: “Protecting the title `veterinary nurse’ is of huge importance to me personally and as a professional. Registered Veterinary Nurses have gone through years of specialist training and have an obligation to keep their knowledge up to date with Continued Professional Development. We are a highly skilled profession holding a wealth of knowledge. In the same way that people have every right to wish to be cared for by qualified human nurses, animals and their owners should have the same expectation of the care that they may require during their lives.”
“Unqualified staff in veterinary practice can often offer care of animals but there are aspects of animal care that can only be provided to a high standard by Registered Veterinary Nurses. We urge people to support and protect our profession and sign the petition.”
Veterinary nurses in the UK are amongst the best trained veterinary nurses in the world and becoming one takes a lot of time, commitment and training followed by challenging exams. As well as keeping their skills up to date, RVNs also follow a Code of Professional Conduct and are subject to a disciplinary process.
Watch the video showing the vital role that veterinerary nurses play in animal care.
You can find out more information from the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeon website here.
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