We are moving closer to the introduction of a disciplinary system for Registered Veterinary Nurses – now likely to be towards the end of this year.

We had hoped that, under the new system, we would be able to remove – from both the List and the Register – RVNs who had been found guilty of serious professional misconduct, fraudulent registration or criminal convictions that affect their fitness to practise. However, recent legal advice has recommended that, as this is a non- statutory Register, it is only possible to remove people from the Register. They would remain on the unregulated List.

This means that they would be allowed legally to continue to carry out Schedule 3 tasks. It is understandable that some may be disappointed with this – both VNs and vets – as there is a huge commitment from the profession towards accountability. This is reflected within both VN and RCVS Councils in terms of continued commitment to seek new legislation which will pave the way for a statutory VN Register in the longer term. However, the stigma attached to public removal from the Register, and the consequent impact this would have on the professional reputation of the individual, will be significant.

Join us at BSAVA Congress

Did you respond to our consultations last year on veterinary nursing qualifications, veterinary legislation or the Practice Standards Scheme? Did you worry that your comments were going into a black hole? Join our session ‘Falling on Deaf Ears?’ on the Saturday of BSAVA Congress (April 10, Hall 6 at 2pm) to hear what comments we received and how they went on to inform changes in our proposals.

You can also have a sneak preview of the results of our 2010 Survey of the Veterinary Nursing Profession, plus there will be an opportunity to hear about the new Standards for the Practice Standards Scheme. So if you are a practice manager as well as a VN, or involved with maintaining your practice’s accreditation, BSAVA Congress is the place to be! The RCVS team will be on hand to answer your questions on stand.

No 2010 election

As we only received two nominations for VN Council in January – and there were two places up for contest – there will be no VN Council election this year. The new Council members will take up their positions in July, and their names will be announced shortly. 

New Guide

The new RCVS Guide to Professional Conduct for Veterinary Nurses is now available, containing all the guidance that has been updated since the last hard copy was published in 2008. All RVNs have been sent a copy via the post, but if you have not received yours, please contact vetnursing@rcvs.org.uk

• VOL 25 • No3 • March 2010 • Veterinary Nursing Journal