Vets Now reports that its 'Enhancing the Nurse Role' training programme has finished the pilot stage and over 200 veterinary nurses have signed up for the training.

The programme is designed to take advantage of the RCVS Under Care review changes, which mean that veterinary nurses can now start the patient's journey of care in certain cases, when before, vets were required to do a hands-on examination before delegating. 

Racheal Marshall, Vets Now’s Head of Clinical Nursing said: “So, for example, under the protocols a nurse may offer blood tests prior to vet consultation, and the vet can then continue the consultation with the owner with additional clinical information.” 

The 'Enhancing the Nurse Role' training programme is covers three main areas: front of house care, patient procedures and team dynamics. 

So far, Vets Now has held 11 training workshops using partial task simulators to provide a realistic experience and safe environment to learn new skills.

Emphasis is placed on hands-on practical skills that can be used back at clinics, including placement of central lines, urinary catheterisation of blocked cats, feeding tube placement, suturing and a two-day ultrasound training. 

The third phase of the Enhancing the Nurse role programme, which looks at team dynamics, has been overseen by Zara Kennedy, Head of Veterinary Standards at Vets Now. 

She said: “As a vet, the collaboration between the vets and the rest of the team, and maximising everyone’s skills is critical. 

“This third phase focuses on teamwork and communication, and we are utilising much of what has been learned in human medicine.

"A focus on these softer skills enhances the way the teams carry out patient care and ultimately result in better patient care.

Using the great skills of our nurses can help take the pressure off those bottlenecks where currently the patients are waiting for the vet.” 

Vets Now says the Vets Now programme is designed to make the company an appealing place for veterinary nurses to work.

Racheal said: "Using all their skills provides them with greater job satisfaction, and by mixing with other nurses at the training, as well as being a great opportunity to bring our nurses together, they get to share and learn from each other's experiences. 

“It will bring greater benefits for patients and clients and their experience in the clinic.” 

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