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VN Futures initiative launches School Ambassadors Pilot

VN Futures is launching a new School Ambassadors Pilot this November, to address the need for highlighting and supporting pathways into the veterinary nursing profession. The pilot is the result of the VN Futures’ Sustainable Workforce Working Group and is set to run for approximately 12 months with regular review points planned for every three […]

The value of veterinary nurses to practice – changing the mind-set

Stephanie-Writer Davies is a veterinary surgeon and a member of the VN Futures Career Progression Working Group.

Stephanie has always been very supportive of the veterinary nursing profession, recognising the value of veterinary nurses to practice and being keen to see them performing broader and more challenging roles and improve their status and job satisfaction. She is a previous SPVS President, and is currently the SPVS VN Liaison.

VNs looking to themselves for change

Daniel is Operations Manager at Dick White Referrals and a practising RVN. Daniel began his career as a Saturday receptionist at a small clinic and became a veterinary nurse in 2007, moving on to become Head Nurse at a large 24-hour veterinary hospital in East London.

Daniel holds the A1/V1 Clinical Coach qualifications, Level 3 in British Sign Language and is currently completing a Chartered Management Institute Level 7 qualification in Strategic Leadership. Daniel works across HR, strategy and development, facilities management, health and safety and leadership.

My current role is Operations Manager at Dick White Referrals. Starting my career as a veterinary nurse in a variety of roles, and moving to senior management positions, I have always been passionate about the profession and my role within it, but felt that the nursing profession was under-valued and lacked recognition for the important roles RVNs play. I also believed that this attitude towards RVNs restricted our full potential.

Why aren’t veterinary nurses better advocates for the profession?

After graduating with a degree in Pharmacology in 2002, Helen qualified as a RVN in 2005, she then began a six year stint as a locum nurse working nationally and internationally in a variety of settings. She spent five years on BVNA Council.

In September 2013 she qualified as a human centred nurse, after two years in intensive care, she moved to the transplant team where she cares for patients post-transplant. She is also part of the organ retrieval team, who are on call to attend hospitals across the UK to facilitate the collection of organs from deceased donors.

Where are all the veterinary nurses? Is there a need for another training option?

Laura Kidd, a qualified veterinary surgeon, is an educational consultant and tutors on a post-graduate VN qualification, as well as teaching clinical skills to veterinary students.

Each year the actual number of veterinary nurses (VNs) in the UK increases (RCVS, 2014) yet, anecdotally, there seem to be insufficient veterinary nurses to meet demand….