220 vet nurses welcomed to profession at London Zoo ceremonies

Over 220 new veterinary nurses were welcomed to the profession at a series of ceremonies at the Zoological Society of London.

The ceremonies, which took place during this year’s British Veterinary Nursing Association (BVNA) Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month, saw newly-qualified veterinary nurses being formally welcomed to the profession and taken through their professional declarations by Racheal Marshall, chairman of the RCVS Veterinary Nurses Council.

The event also celebrated the achievements of six veterinary nurses who had achieved the Diploma in Advanced Veterinary Nursing (DipAVN) and who also attended the day with their guests.

Speaking on the day, Marshall said: “It is very apt that this ceremony is taking place during BVNA’s Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month, where veterinary practices are encouraged to talk to their clients and the wider public about who veterinary nurses are, what they do and why, as a caring profession, they are so important to animal health and welfare.

“With VNs like these joining our profession or continuing to excel in their careers and helping to raise awareness of veterinary nursing amongst the general public, I am positive that we will continue to progress.

[They] have had to work hard to get here today – by studying and passing exams, all whilst working in practice – which we all know can be very difficult at times.

“Veterinary nurses are a vital part of the veterinary team, working alongside their colleagues to ensure the health and welfare of patients, and supporting clients in what can sometimes be very difficult and emotional decisions.”

One particularly special element of the day was the recognition of Surrey-based veterinary nurse Sandra Robson for her long service with a veterinary nursing career spanning over 40 years.

Robson, who now works part-time at Brelades Vets in Dorking, began her training in 1968 and qualified as a Registered Animal Nursing Assistant (or RANA) in August 1970.

Also attending the day was RCVS president Amanda Boag who presented each of the new veterinary nurses with a scroll containing the professional declaration made by all veterinary nurses on admission to the Register of Veterinary Nurses.

Speaking to the veterinary nurses on the day, Boag said: “I have been very lucky within my career to work with some amazing nurses, and I have learnt so much from being part of the wider veterinary team.

As a young vet working in busy emergency clinics, it was very often the fantastic nurses I worked with who saved the day and were responsible for helping me save patients’ lives. I couldn’t have done it without them.

“Being a vet nurse is a wonderful vocation with great and increasing career opportunities and you are such an important part of the veterinary team.”

The next Vet Nurse Day ceremony takes place on Thursday, October 17, 2019.