The RCVS has teamed up with the British Veterinary Association and the Veterinary Defence Society (VDS) to offer a free day of CPD for overseas veterinary graduates working, or considering working, in the UK.

The free day takes place on May 28, 2015 and is followed on May 29 by a masterclass in communications skills, provided by the VDS, which involves role play with professional actors and costs £160.

Combined, the two days provide overseas vets with the necessary information and support they need to practise in the UK. Vets can choose to attend the two days separately.

In the year to March 31, 2015 the RCVS registered 939 overseas graduates compared with 813 graduates from UK universities. The top five countries from which vets graduated were Spain (199), Australia (94), Italy (93), Romania (74) and Ireland (73).

The “Introduction to the UK veterinary profession – an essential CPD course for overseas vets” is aimed at overseas vets in their first two years in the UK and those considering working in the UK.

All three organisations wish to reduce the risk such veterinary surgeons may become the subject of a complaint, and to improve their UK experience and advance their communication skills.

The course also aims to help them understand their legal duties as a veterinary surgeon in the UK, which can vary significantly from their own country.

The first day – “Key information and skills needed to practise as a vet in the UK” – maps out how the UK veterinary profession is organised and includes information about jobs, employment rights and the support available for when things go wrong.

Talks will be given by representatives from each of the three organising bodies, together with the Veterinary Benevolent Fund. In addition, Luis Sainz-Pardo from VetAbroad will provide “Tips from an overseas vet who has survived”.

The second day, “A masterclass in communication skills”, goes through challenges in the consulting room and how to handle them.

The course takes place at the Novotel Manchester West hotel in Worsley Manchester.

Those interested in attending can register online at www.rcvs.org.uk/overseascpd or contact Lizzie Lockett, director of communications at the RCVS, for further information on l.lockett@rcvs.org.uk

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