There were several items of relevance to veterinary nurses on the agenda for the 3rd November 2011 RCVS Council meeting, which are summarised below. 

Awarding Body to close

The RCVS Council agreed to a recommendation made by the Veterinary Nurses Council at its meeting in October that the College should relinquish its role as awarding body (VNJ 26: 387, November 2011).

The VN Council decision had been based on the perceived risk of conflict between the College’s role as a regulator and as an awarding organisation. The name of the awarding organisation to which the qualification will be transferred is not yet confirmed; however, the transition is likely to take place with effect from the 2012 academic year. Q&As about the change are available on the RCVS website. 

Veterinary Nursing Bye-laws

In line with the Awarding Body role being relinquished, changes needed to be made to the Veterinary Nursing Bye-laws. The objective was to articulate and clarify the Colleges ongoing role as regulator of veterinary nurse education in order to ensure that those qualifying are adequately prepared to receive the Colleges Veterinary Nursing Certificate – effectively a ‘licence to practise’- under the Royal Charter. The proposed changes were approved by Council. A paper outlining the proposed changes can be downloaded from the RCVS website, Council meetings section under About’). 

VN Council report

The chairman of the Veterinary Nurses Council, Liz Branscombe, gave a report to RCVS Council on matters arising from the VN Council’s October meeting. She also updated Council on the successful reception that had taken place at the House of Commons on 11th October, the objectives of which had been to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the veterinary nursing profession and to push for statutory regulation for veterinary nurses. On the day of the reception, she reported, an Early Day Motion (EDM) had been tabled by Andrew Rosindell MP to support the need for statutory regulation.

At the time of going to press, the EDM has been signed by 20 MPs, which is more than very many EDMs receive – but please encourage your local MP to sign up!

Liz Branscombe also reported that the new badge for registered veterinary nurses had been well received when it was launched at the British Veterinary Nursing Association Congress in October. So far we have received over 200 applications – don’t forget to send in your form soon, as the price goes up from £15 to the normal badge replacement cost (£43) after the end of January 2012 (the form can be downloaded from the RCVS website). 

VN Council chairman, Liz Branscombe

RVN Preliminary Investigation Committee

Meanwhile, Lynne Hill, chairman of the RVN Preliminary Investigation Committee, reported to RCVS Council that the Committee had considered two new complaints against RVNs. In general, complaints remain confidential unless, and until, the matter reaches a Disciplinary Committee hearing, information.

Veterinary Nursing Journal• VOL 26 • December 2011 •