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BVA Congress promises contentious issues plus!

THE BVA Congress takes place at The Moat House Hotel, Stratford-upon-Avon this weekend.
Following the successful format of recent years, congress will commence on Thursday 3 October with a seminar day, featuring two half-day programmes compiled by the Veterinary Association for Arbitration & Jurisprudence (VAAJ) and the Veterinary Deer Society. While the VAAJ morning seminar will concentrate on the problems encountered with employment law, the VDS afternoon session will address various issues affecting the farming and treatment of deer, including last year’s FMD outbreak.

The Opening and Awards Ceremony on Thursday evening will feature addresses by the Opener, Mrs Brid Rodgers, the Northern Ireland Minister of Agriculture & Rural Development and the BVA president Mr Andrew Scott.

The main congress programme for Friday and Saturday features two parallel sessions. The political forum, ‘Contentious Issues - For the Record’, will address some of the burning issues currently affecting the profession while, as part of its ongoing commitment to continuing professional development, the ‘In Practice’ programme is designed to provide a good working knowledge of how to treat those tricky condition that turn up on farm visits and in the surgery.

Friday’s ‘For the Record’ programme will include ‘An Audience with the Competition Commission’, designed to give delegates the chance to speak to members of the CC about the overall cost of practice, the real cost of providing a pharmacy as part of a one-stop veterinary service and the constraints on the availability of medicines, as well as ‘UK graduates - a haemorrhaging talent?’ and ‘Coping with Practice - what’s next?’, designed to address the many concerns expressed of late as to the changing perspectives of young graduates and the changing face of veterinary practice.


Friday’s simultaneous ‘In Practice’ programme is devoted to large animals and includes sessions covering E.Coli Mastitis, Bovine TB, Emerging Diseases in Cattle, Sheep and Pigs and periparturient problems in the mare and foal.

Friday also features the Wooldridge Memorial Lecture by Professor Quintin McKellar entitled ‘Pride and Prejudice’.

Saturday’s ‘For the Record’ programme commences with ‘Environmental Concerns - Veterinary Responsibilities’, timely in that last year’s funeral pyres have, no surprisingly, raised the profile of animal health and public health concerns yet again, and is followed by sessions covering the contrasting way in which GB and France handle animal and public health issues. There will then be three interlinked debates covering Local Veterinary Inspectors (LVIs) and their pivotal role in disease control, ‘Sheep on Wheels’ on the role of controlling the movement of animals if disease is to be controlled and a ‘FMD Lessons to be Learned’ debate including speakers who have been involved with FMD inquiries in Britain, Europe and internationally.

Saturday is companion animal day for the ‘In Practice’ programme and includes presentations on ‘Problem-solving for the pruritic dog’. ‘Thoracic radiography: techniques & interpretation’, ‘Improving survival in feline chronic renal failure: alternatives to anabolics!’, a ‘Practical approach to wound management’ and last, but by no means least, bearing in mind last year’s FMD epidemic, ‘Large animal emergencies for the small animal practitioner’.

With its combination of politics and CPD the BVA Congress provides a unique opportunity for veterinary surgeons to extend their knowledge and make their views known. The debates at BVA Congress help to shape BVA policy and with Government and European decisions continuing to have an impact on the profession at every level, Congress provides an important opportunity for the profession to influence developments that will affect it directly.