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The initiative was launched by the RCVS and the BVNA in 2016 to identify and find solutions to some of the specific issues facing the veterinary nursing profession.
In July 2016 it published the VN Futures Report and Action Plan which set out 31 actions under six broad strategic aims.
To follow up these actions, six working groups were formed to look at the broad strategic areas and, in June 2018, it was decided to set up a VN Futures Board to help coordinate and oversee the work of these groups. The Board comprises the RCVS Veterinary Nurses Council Chair and Vice-Chair, Racheal Marshall and Liz Cox, and the BVNA President and Vice-President, Wendy Nevins and Jo Hinde.
Outgoing Chair Wendy Nevins said: "In its first 12 months, the VNF Board has really got to grips with the direction and legacy of the VN Futures initiative. The clarity and direction it has brought is reinvigorating the Working Groups. The next 12 months will see a real focus on delivery of the original findings of the VFN Futures initiative."
The VNF initiative is nearly three years into its original five-year life span and the Board reported that progress thus far has included the development of two new Diplomas in Advanced Veterinary Nursing, more resources to help both VNs and vets navigate Schedule 3 and publication of career case studies to demonstrate the diverse roles available in the profession.
Wendy added: "The VN Futures project has a fixed five-year horizon to make sure we keep focus on what the profession said it wanted – and needed – to be delivered. At the end it will be for the profession to decide how well this has been done – and what comes next."
The Board also confirmed plans to have a presence at the Royal Veterinary College’s Student Veterinary Nurse Fest this summer, as well as events at the BVNA Congress in October and the British Small Animal Veterinary Association Congress in April 2020.
Racheal Marshall said: "The energy and life of the VN Futures initiative comes from veterinary nurses so we are excited to be taking this back out to meet nurses and ask them for their thoughts and comments on how these issues – like career progression, further qualifications, and emerging agendas like One Health – matter to them. We are really looking forward to a busy program of congress events in order to hear from people!"
To download the VN Futures Report and Action Plan and view some of the initiative’s latest blogs, case studies and other online resources, visit: www.vetfutures.org.uk/vnfutures/
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