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RCVS approves postgraduate veterinary courses for Advanced Practitioner eligibility

Posted 5 March 2015

Veterinary surgeons who achieve one of eight clinically-based postgraduate qualifications at Harper Adams University will now be eligible to apply for Advanced Practitioner status, the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons has confirmed. 

In a further boost for veterinary studies at the university, the RCVS has added postgraduate certificates in Exotic Animal Studies, Feline Veterinary Studies, Small Animal Cardiology Studies, Small Animal Diagnostic Imaging, Small Animal Emergency Medicine and Surgery, Small Animal Medicine, Small Animal Ophthalmology and Small Animal Surgery to its list of qualifications that confer eligibility for applications for Advanced Practitioner status. 

The awards have all been developed in partnership with Improve International, which has 16 years’ experience of providing high-quality Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses to veterinary surgeons, veterinary nurses and veterinary practice managers, and The European School of Veterinary Postgraduate Studies (ESVPS), which already accredits and awards General Practitioner Certificate examinations for the veterinary sector, and has worked with Harper Adams to develop the curriculum for the new courses.  

“It is great news that veterinary surgeons who achieve these qualifications awarded by Harper Adams will be eligible to apply for Advanced Practitioner status,” said Carwyn Ellis, Head of the Animal Production, Welfare and Veterinary Sciences Department at Harper Adams University. “It will provide them with a clear path to climb up the veterinary hierarchy and demonstrate to fellow professionals and the public that they have advanced knowledge in their chosen field.” 

Successful applicants for Advanced Practitioner status who achieve the professional skills module contained within these courses  - or as a top-up to small animal medicine and small animal surgery - and who have covered the specific technical content required for Advanced Practitioner status will not have to provide additional  evidence of continuing professional development in professional key skills when they first apply. 

“Advanced Practitioner” is an accreditation status pitched at the middle tier of veterinary surgeons, sitting between those who have qualified as vets by completing their initial veterinary medicine degree and those accredited as  RCVS Specialists. 

The university is also celebrating the advancement of one of its teaching staff. Philip Robinson MRCVS, Senior Lecturer in Farm Animal Health and Welfare, is the first UK vet to have achieved State Veterinary Medicine Specialist Status with RCVS. 

Philip recently completed his PhD in the Geography Department of Durham University, having qualitatively researched factors affecting bovine tuberculosis eradication efforts in Northern Ireland. His main research interests are farm animal disease epidemiology, veterinary surveillance, enzootic disease control, and the use of qualitative research methodologies at the interface of the natural and social sciences.

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