The RCVS is urging representatives from veterinary practices to respond to a survey, which aims to gauge the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on veterinary clinical practice and to help shape the College’s ongoing response to the crisis, including its discussions with government.
The survey has been sent to all UK veterinary practices and the RCVS is asking that just one person in each practice who is best placed to answer the questions completes the survey.
The questions being asked include how and whether the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the practice’s approach to providing 24/7 emergency care; how the pandemic has affected practice turnover; whether staff have been furloughed; whether certain premises have had to be closed or might be closed in the future; and whether practices are undertaking or planning to undertake remote consulting.
Lizzie Lockett, RCVS CEO, said: “We have received a great deal of anecdotal evidence via emails, contacts and social media on how the COVID-19 pandemic, and the restrictions put in place by the UK Government in response to it, is affecting veterinary businesses and professionals.
“However, in order to have the evidence-base to take a well-informed view of how it is impacting the profession, we would urge representatives from practices across the UK to complete this survey as soon as they can. It is crucial that we have this information to help further RCVS policy decisions and ongoing conversations with government, where appropriate.
“We recognise that this is an extremely difficult time for everyone and completing a survey may not be at the top of your list of priorities. However, those who do complete the survey will be making a vital contribution to helping us shape the most effective response to the unprecedented challenges we face. Reflecting this, we anticipate re-running the survey to track the situation on the ground over the coming weeks and months.”
All data gathered by the survey will be anonymous although the results of the survey will be shared with government and other veterinary organisations and will also be published.
If any UK veterinary practice believes they or a member of their staff has not received the survey via email then please contact Anthony Roberts on firstname.lastname@example.org in order for checks to be made.
As it is vital that the data reflects a specific point in time, and because the circumstances under which we are all operating are changing quickly, the deadline for completing the survey is 6pm on Tuesday 7 April.