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A Sad Salute to Queen Elizabeth II

Yesterday, the world learned of the passing of the remarkable British Monarch HM Queen Elizabeth II. Her Royal Highness passed away peacefully in her Balmoral home in the Scottish highlands.

An avid animal lover, the Queen was well known for her enduring love of horses. She was also a great dog lover and the Corgi breed in particular is synonymous with her name. In fact, such was the number of Corgis at some points that some would remark (quietly) about the presence of a “moving carpet”!

As the world mourns the loss of such a comforting and omnipresent figure through the seventy years of her reign, we take a second to remember that she was the patron in the UK of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons(RCVS). The College has many roles but broadly acts as an independent regulator acting to ensure the highest standards of professional and clinical care are described and met in both education and care so as to maintain the confidence of the British public in the profession. The UK version of a VMA, just one with royal blessing and patronage!

Beginning life as a somewhat quirky offshoot of the Royal College of Surgeons, members of the Royal College were, for years, not referred to as “Dr.”, but instead as is the way in human medicine with surgeons, as “Mr.” or “Mrs/Ms.”  Regarded as a higher term of deference.

All of us at VetX would like to express our sadness at the loss of such an incredible leader who set an example to us all. The Queen’s legendary work ethic, her stoic disposition and her unwavering commitment to her role serves as an example to us all. 

RIP Queen Elizabeth II.


Making Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the Forefront of Your Practice

President of the Women’s Veterinary Leadership Development Initiative, Dr. Laura Pletz, has recently shared the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion in a presentation at the American Veterinary Medical Association’s 2022 convention. 

Practices have many ways to expand diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), one of the easiest ways of doing this is ‘first impressions’. Dr. Laura Pletz believes first impressions are everything when trying to attract diverse clients and job applicants. Showing DEI through social media and on the practice website can help attract new clients and future employees from diverse backgrounds. “Optics matter, and it’s really important to think about your online presence,” said Dr. Laura. For example, you could miss an opportunity for a brilliant black veterinarian to join your clinic if your website solely features all-white staff. Always think about the message you are portraying. 

Inclusion is the absolute key to all of this,” said Dr. Petz, “You can have a diverse team, but if you’re not including everybody and giving them a sense of belonging, it’s kind of meaningless.”

Dr. Pletz recommends using your online outlets as a lens to welcoming to all. Using pictures of your team in a professional setting with candid shots, rather than using stock images, can help set your practice’s culture. 

To read the full story, click here.


Vetlife’s Veterinary Month of Movement

Vets from around the UK have been invited to get active for Vetlife’s Veterinary Month of Movement, which takes place in October.

The charity is using the month to promote the well-being benefits of exercise and raise awareness and funds of the essential work they undertake. 

The month of Movement 2022, marks Vetlife’s third ever Month of Movement and they are inviting vets to take on a movement challenge and raise funds through sponsorship. 

“It is well recognised how important physical activity is for wellbeing and what better way to promote within your workplace than participating in this event.

Vetlife is an incredible charity supporting veterinary professionals through moments of hardship, with mental health support and much more.

“Vetlife is a great charity with ever-increasing demands on its services and it is hoped that much needed funds can be raised through the VMOM campaign.” Said Vetlife trustee, Richard Killen.

To get involved and raise funds go here.


The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association Appoints a New President

Dr. Chris Bell has recently been appointed the President of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA), taking over from Dr. Louis Kwantes.

Dr. Bell currently serves as the American Association of Equine Practitioners liaison with the Manitoba Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA) and is a board member of the Canadian Equine Veterinary Advocacy Alliance.

Alongside his roles as a veterinarian and board member, Bell is a well-recognized speaker in the veterinary community. He has shared presentations on lameness, ethanol fusion of the hocks, MRI diagnosis, and treatment of navicular disease, orthopaedic diseases, and the development of balloon sinuplasty techniques, both nationally and internationally. 

He is a board-certified Equine Surgeon and Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (DACVS), an adjunct professor of equine surgery and sports medicine with WCVM, and has owned and practised at Elders Equine Veterinary Service.

Bell will be the 74th President to represent the CVMA.

Find out more here


R U OK? Day

Yesterday, all around the globe, veterinary clinics stopped to pause and ask each other the vital question ‘R U OK?’. R U OK? Day was launched in Australia, by the non-profit suicide prevention organization R U OK? However, the day is becoming recognized across the globe, with many clinics in both America and the UK, joining the campaign. 

Held on September 8th, 2022, R U OK? Day was dedicated to asking friends, family, and colleagues how they were. 

Many clinics around the world took time out of their busy work schedule to have a shared lunch, enjoy a cup of coffee, and chat with one another. 

According to research carried out by the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA), more than half of veterinarians (66%) have experienced or were currently experiencing poor mental health. 

Read more about the day here. 


Starting a New Job, Here Are 4 Tips:

Starting a new job can seem like a daunting task, no matter your age or experience. However, it’s important to note that starting a new job is also an exciting new challenge that you need to throw yourself into. 

So how can ensure your first week of starting a new job runs smoothly?

  • Introduce yourself: Creating a good first impression is important. Be sure to find time to introduce yourself – this could just be a quick, energetic introduction to the people who you haven’t met yet. Enthusiasm and energy are important when starting a new job, as they help display confidence and keenness to get stuck in.
  • Do your best to remember names: Remembering names is a great way to remember someone and makes it easier when asking for help. A great way to remember names is through association, such as relating them to someone else’s name you know, an object, something that relates to them, or even a colour. However, don’t feel overwhelmed by needing to remember everyone’s name. It’s tiring starting a new job and easy to forget. If you forget someone’s name, be honest, you could say: ‘I’m sorry, I’ve been taking in a lot of new information over the last few days. Could you remind me of your name?’. 
  • Find a friendly colleague: Once you’ve had your first introductions, you’ll get a good sense of who you’ll be working with and who seems ‘friendly’. Developing at least one trusted relationship in the first week can help you feel more comfortable and give you the chance to ask 1-1 questions. For example, try asking the ‘friendly’ colleague to eat lunch together or have a coffee. This can offer you social stability. 
  • Navigate your new work environment: When you first start, have a look around the building. Work out where the toilets are, the staff room, where to eat lunch, etc. If you were not offered a tour, there’s no shame in asking for one! This first week is also a great time to experiment with your commute – work out the easiest route for the times you’re working.

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