Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) council member Lord Sandy Trees has submitted a private member’s bill to the House of Lords that would legally protect the title “veterinary nurse”.
If drawn sufficiently highly in the ballot, the bill will be debated in the Lords and the Commons and, if approved by both houses, would become law.
The bill would prohibit use of the title veterinary nurse for any person whose name is not on the RCVS register of veterinary nurses. Any non-registered person who used the title veterinary nurse – or a name, title or description that implied they were on the register – would be guilty of an offence and may be fined or convicted under the Veterinary Surgeons Act.
Prof Lord Trees said: “It is very exciting, and a privilege, to be entering a private member’s bill to protect the title veterinary nurse into the ballot for private member’s bills in Parliament. If we are drawn high enough in the ballot and if we can get parliamentary time – two important ‘ifs’ – I am confident the bill will receive total cross-party support.
“It would mark the final brick in the wall of creating a fully fledged, recognised and protected veterinary nursing profession. This is what the veterinary nursing profession merits and the public deserves.”
The RCVS is encouraging registered veterinary nurses to back its campaign to protect the title. Further details about the campaign can be found at www.rcvs.org.uk/vntitle