A registered veterinary nurse who pioneered raising awareness for the profession has won this year’s Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) Veterinary Nursing Golden Jubilee Award.

RVN Dot Creighton said she was delighted to win the award ‘at such an exciting time for the profession.’

Dot Creighton was president of the British Veterinary Nursing Association from 2003 to 2004, and during her presidential year devised the concept of VN Awareness Day as a way of making animal owners and communities more aware of veterinary nurses and what they do.

This subsequently developed into an awareness week and then National VN Awareness Month, which takes place every May.

This legacy was one of the main reasons Mrs Creighton, who was also a member of RCVS VN council from 2004 to 2011, was chosen.

VN council chairman Kathy Kissick said Mrs Creighton had worked tirelessly to raise awareness of the veterinary nurse, both within the profession and with the public.

“She has always supported the student veterinary nurse in training and leads by example at all times, inspiring nurses to stay in or return to practice even when life changes their circumstances,” Mrs Kissick said.

“Dot is an inspiration to many, many nurses and always commits 100% to the welfare of animals in her care and her clients. I congratulate her on achieving this award.”

The VN Golden Jubilee Award was launched in 2011 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first RCVS veterinary nurse training scheme and nominees can be veterinary nurses, veterinary surgeons or laypeople who have made an outstanding contribution to the profession.

Mrs Creighton was nominated for the award by fellow RVN Lindsey Raven-Emrich, who praised her “enthusiasm and input” to the profession and added she “couldn’t think of a better member of the nursing community to receive this award”.

Mrs Creighton, who works at a practice in Essex, said she was delighted to win the award at such a crucial time for the profession.

She said: “It couldn’t be a more exciting time to train to be a veterinary nurse – we have a robust training scheme, we are pushing and advancing the boundaries of veterinary nursing practice, we are seeing veterinary nurses branch out into different fields of clinical practice and, most importantly, the new royal charter officially recognises veterinary nursing as a regulated profession.”

The award will be given to Mrs Creighton at this year’s RCVS Day – the college’s annual general meeting and awards day that takes place on Friday, July 10 in London.

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