A veterinary nurse dedicated to improving animal welfare and veterinary care in the UK and abroad is the winner of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) VN Golden Jubilee Award.

Hayley Walters, 36, an anaesthesia and welfare veterinary nurse at the University of Edinburgh Hospital for Small Animals and the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education (JMICAWE) at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, was nominated for her efforts for animal welfare through her teaching, clinical and international outreach work.

The judges said she had made an exceptional contribution to the profession.

As well as assisting with anaesthesia at the hospital, she is responsible for training both vet and vet nurse students in all aspects of animal welfare, handling and pain management.

Her work with the JMICAWE entails sharing her veterinary nursing and animal welfare education skills with organisations across the world and has taken her to places as diverse as Bosnia-Herzegovina and India.

The VN Golden Jubilee Award will be given to Hayley at RCVS Day – the college’s annual meeting and awards day – on July 11.

She was thrilled to receive the award and thanked colleagues who nominated her.

“We must never stop caring, never stop learning and never stop trying to make a difference for every animal that comes into our lives. I am very grateful for this honour and would like to thank the RCVS for awarding it to me.” she said.

The VN Golden Jubilee Award was launched in 2011 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first training course for veterinary nurses. The previous award winners were Jean Turner in 2011 and Sue Badger in 2012. There was no winner in 2013.

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