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Celebrating 60 years of teamwork at BEVA Congress 2021

BEVA Congress returns for 2021 to provide delegates with access to the latest thinking in equine practice in a novel hybrid format

The annual BEVA Congress is back for 2021, taking place at the International Convention Centre (ICC), Birmingham, from 5 to 7 September. But, for those who cannot attend in-person, BEVA is offering a virtual congress with selected sessions from the main congress programme live-streamed for online access.

The highlights of this year’s congress are the exhibition and the scientific programme comprised of three main programme streams each day, the clinical research programme and the 13th International Equine Colic Research Symposium. Poster presentations for the colic symposium will be on display digitally throughout the symposium and each evening session will involve 10 abstract presentations with live question and answer sessions. Delegates going to the congress in-person will receive complimentary access to the symposium and virtual delegates can purchase access for £49.

For those who cannot attend in-person, BEVA is offering a virtual congress with selected sessions from the main congress programme live-streamed for online access

Tim Barnett, RCVS Recognised Specialist in Equine Surgery and Equine Dentistry, and Ceri Sherlock, RCVS Recognised Specialist in Equine Surgery and Large Animal Diagnostic Imaging, are to co-chair the event, with this year’s theme being “Celebrating 60 years of teamwork”.

When describing her choice for the 2021 BEVA Congress theme, BEVA President Lucy Grieve stated: “I have always felt strongly that our profession not only needs, but thrives on a healthy culture of teamwork. My career has consistently shown me that where a team approach was lacking there was nothing to be gained by anyone, least of all the horses.

“Equine practice is unique to some degree, by nature of how it encompasses so many allied professions outside of the practice within which the vets and nurses work. Even as a student it was obvious to me that those who failed to build relationships would find their ability to effect change and their day-to-day enjoyment significantly curtailed.”

Attending in-person

Lecture halls are open from 8:30am to 6pm each day, and the exhibition opens from 9.30am to 7pm on Sunday and Monday, with an early closing time of 2pm on the Tuesday.

This year’s speakers include Celia Marr, equine internal medicine specialist at Rossdales Equine Hospital and Diagnostic Centre, who will deliver a talk on whether it is OK to ride a horse with a heart murmur as part of the “Cardiology Conundrum” session on 5 September. She will also be a panellist for the session on “Teamwork – maximising the first opinion–specialist relationships”, echoing the overarching theme of the congress.

Tim Brazil and Fleur Whitlock will also attend the congress as speakers, with Fleur presenting lessons we can learn from recent influenza outbreaks (“Medicine Hot Topics”) and Tim lecturing and answering questions on subjects ranging from safeguarding against client complaints and learning from human epidemics to dermatology: “CAT – in horses with dermal melanomas, is the concept of melanoma vaccine more effective than benign neglect?”

Nicola Menzies-Gow will deliver a lecture in the nursing hot topics session on the practical management of obesity in horses. Other speakers throughout the congress include Lucy Grieve, Tim Mair and Russell Parker, with the full list of speakers and programme available on the congress website.

Each day provides seven hours of CPD training and general certificates of attendance for CPD will be sent electronically to all delegates post-congress. You can contact the events team to request the certificate but these will not be issued after 31 December 2021. More information on the accreditation available can be found on the website.

COVID-19 safety measures

BEVA Congress and the ICC are putting multiple COVID-19 safety measures in place to keep delegates and speakers as safe as possible. These include:

  • Hand sanitising stations and washing facilities provided throughout the venue
  • Enhanced cleaning procedures, especially within areas assessed as high touch point zones
  • Cashless venue with card payments only
  • Paperless registration: ahead of the event, attendees will be sent a digital ticket which will be required for access to the ICC and when signing into the lecture halls
  • Staggered programme with each stream beginning at a different time to avoid walkways becoming crowded

BEVA congress will be keeping their website up to date on the latest COVID-19 safety measures for the event, so you can check for any updates and more information on the safety measures page of the website.

Virtual congress

Selected sessions from the main programme will be live-streamed for those unable to attend the live sessions in-person to help make virtual delegates feel like they are at congress. These sessions will include a lecture by John Hickman, with an opening address from BEVA President, Lucy Grieve. John will deliver a lecture in line with this year’s theme: “Together we stand, divided we fail”. The session also includes the BEVA annual general meeting with the board of management.

Selected sessions from the main programme will be live-streamed for those unable to attend the live sessions in-person to help make virtual delegates feel like they are at congress

Interviews and other exclusive content will be added to the virtual platform with all of the main programme being recorded for access via the virtual platform for six weeks post-congress, allowing for great flexibility to dip into what you want, when you want to.

Further information

Socials and awards

There will be Happy Hours on the Sunday and Monday from 5.30 to 7, providing space for you to unwind where you can catch up with old friends and new acquaintances over a drink. Adam Kay, author, comedian and former doctor will also be providing entertainment during Sunday’s Happy Hour this year, and the Swagger Band will be playing for this year’s annual dinner dance on Monday 5 September, with limited tickets available from £79. More information about the socials and booking tickets can be found on the website.

BEVA awards including the BEVA Equine Welfare Award, sponsored by the Blue Cross, the BEVA Richard Hartley Clinical Award and the Congress 2021 Veterinary Practice Best Stand Awards – along with many other awards that can be found on the website – will be awarded during the congress.

Exhibition

The exhibition is still running this year, giving you the opportunity to browse over 70 specialist stands, exhibits, catering facilities and popular attractions. Exhibitors will showcase the most recent products and innovations and give you the opportunity to speak with your suppliers, referral practices and organisations interacting with the equine sector.

Sustainability

BEVA Congress is making great strides in sustainability with a focus on three major areas: reducing paper, reducing waste and re-using signage and equipment wherever possible.

The ICC sustainable initiatives involve a robust waste policy wherein non-recyclable waste is incinerated to create electricity for the local community, aligning with BEVA’s “carefully selected venue and partners” sustainability scheme.

BEVA Congress will also be trialling a “digital delegate bag” over a physical one, with all the flyers and materials usually received in the bag given to delegates digitally instead

Attendees will be provided with a hot lunch to reduce packaging waste from packed lunches and disposable cutlery. BEVA Congress will also be trialling a “digital delegate bag” over a physical one, with all the flyers and materials usually received in the bag given to delegates digitally instead.

BEVA has also arranged a session for this year’s congress on “Sustainability in equine
practice” on 6September with speakers such as Ellie West and April Sotomayor looking into getting the ball rolling on sustainability in the equine sector.

More information about ticket prices, BEVA member discounted rates and the congress programme can be found on the BEVA website. FAQs regarding travelling to the ICC, CPD hours and more can be accessed on their website.