Concerns about the Royal College’s ability to regulate veterinary practices owned by people who are not vets were raised by clinicians attending an RCVS Question Time event in Norfolk.

Concerns about the Royal College’s ability to regulate veterinary practices owned by people who are not vets were raised by clinicians attending an RCVS Question Time event in Norfolk.

The meeting, open to vets and VNs, was attended by the officers of the Royal College, who responded to questions posed by audience members or sent to the college prior to the event.

RCVS president Peter Jinman answered questions on policing corporate practices.The event, which took place on January 20 at the Holiday Inn Norwich North saw RCVS president Peter Jinman respond to questions and comments about the policing of corporate practices.  

One veterinary surgeon in the audience asked: “How can the RCVS effectively police the profession when owners of practices, who are not vets, are outside their jurisdiction?”

In response, Mr Jinman said: “The Veterinary Surgeons Act doesn’t allow the college to regulate anyone but the members of the profession. If you are not a vet we cannot regulate you. If the business is owned by somebody who is not a veterinary surgeon, and that’s a very common thing now, the college doesn’t have any jurisdiction over them as an individual.”

However, making comparisons between vets working under the direction of corporate managers and clinicians working in the health service, Mr Jinman also said: “It’s not a lot different from the NHS, where doctors are working in their individual capacity and can disciplined by the relevant body.

“It’s no different to the way the PDSA has worked for a number of years. It is the same with DEFRA vets – these are veterinary surgeons working for a particular employer, that happens to be the state, but they have found themselves in difficulties on occasions and before disciplinary procedures. So the self-regulation of the profession is still maintained.”

  • For the full article, by reporter Joel Dudley, see Veterinary Times, issue date February 7.

 

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