Lord Trees, the second veterinary surgeon to enter the House of Lords, will open the BVA’s annual congress on September 28, 2012 with a view from inside Parliament on the role of vets and science in public policy making.

Lord Trees, the second veterinary surgeon to enter the House of Lords, will open the annual congress of the British Veterinary Association on September 28, 2012 with a view from inside Parliament on the role of vets and science in public policy making.

Lord Trees to open BVA Congress 2012.BVA Congress officially begins on the evening of September 27 with a welcome reception, including the presidential address and awards ceremony celebrating excellence in the profession and runs throughout Friday and Saturday at the Merseyside Maritime Museum at the Albert Dock in Liverpool.

Highlights of the two-day contentious issues programme, under the theme ‘Delivering a healthy future’, include:

  • HORSES FOR SPORT
    Race horses are pushed to the limit but how far is too far? Equine vets Tim Greet and Roly Owers debate some of the ethical and practical issues associated with veterinary care of horses in sport.
  • WOMEN IN THE VETERINARY PROFESSION
    Veterinary science has seen a rapid change in the gender makeup of graduates but what impact, if any, has the demographic shift had? Veterinary surgeons Lynne Hill and Jennifer Hall consider the importance of ‘occupationally relevant sex differences’ between men and women.
  • RESPONSIBILITY AND COST SHARING
    The new Animal Health and Welfare Board for England was introduced to bring those most affected by animal health policy into the heart of the decision-making process. One year on, Michael Seals, chair of the AHWBE, and BVA past president Bill Reilly debate whether it has achieved it goals.
  • ANTIMICROBIALS
    Veterinary surgeons across Europe have been threatened with legislative changes that would restrict the use of antimicrobials. Examining the debate from both a veterinary and a public health perspective, the Health Protection Agency‘s John Threlfall and the University of Bristol‘s David Barrett will consider whether legislative diktats are the answer.

BVA Congress 2012The Wooldridge Memorial Lecture will be delivered by Dr David Heymann (chairman of the Health Protection Agency Board) under the title ‘Interests in common: the veterinary contribution to public health’, examining how the role of vets in public health could be developed further.

In addition, the congress programme includes a question and answer session with the UK’s four chief veterinary officers, a debate on veterinary engagement with farmers, and back-to-back debates examining the relationship between humans and their pets and asking where the veterinary profession sits.

Alongside the contentious issue debates the University of Liverpool will deliver 11 hours of high-quality small animal CPD on topics including antimicrobial resistance, disease surveillance, osteoarthritis, oncology, and heart failure.

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