19 October 2015

Warwick and Leamington MP Chris White joined staff at Avonvale Veterinary Centres’ Warwick clinic on Friday (October 16) to lend his support to a campaign which aims to protect the title of ‘veterinary nurse’.

Under current legislation, anyone can call themselves a veterinary nurse – even if they lack the relevant training and education.

More than 17,000 people from the veterinary community and general public have petitioned the government in attempts to raise the issue in a formal parliamentary debate.

Stephen Bamber, a director and senior vet at Avonvale, said: “It is extremely inappropriate and often dangerous for people without formal training to refer to themselves as a veterinary nurse.

“Registered veterinary nurses are allowed to give medical treatment and sometimes even carry out minor surgery on animals – something which would undoubtedly put pets’ welfare at risk if performed by someone without the proper qualifications.”

The campaign also has the full support of the British Veterinary Nursing Association (BVNA) and the British Veterinary Association (BVA), the respective representative bodies for veterinary nurses and veterinary surgeons in the UK.

John Blackwell, president of BVA, added: “The BVA has long supported full recognition of the role of veterinary nurses, who are an essential part of the veterinary team. Now we need to go one step further and protect the title of RVN. Not only will this recognise the skills of qualified veterinary nurses and the unique contribution they make to the veterinary team, it will also give clients confidence in the professional roles of all team members caring for their animals.”