How VDS Can Help with RCVS CPD Requirements for Vets and RVNs

How VDS Can Help with RCVS CPD Requirements for Vets and RVNs

At a time when veterinary practice feels busier than ever, the thought of planning hours’ worth of CPD for 2023 might feel a little overwhelming. Read this blog to understand how your VDS membership can help you meet your RCVS CPD requirements. 

RCVS has specific CPD requirements for vets and veterinary nurses. You can read all about them here and it is your responsibility to keep up to date with any changes.  

What counts towards my RCVS CPD requirements?

The amount of CPD that must be undertaken on an annual basis is stipulated by RCVS. When it comes to choosing your veterinary CPD activities, take some time to think about what is going to be the most relevant and beneficial to you, as well as your practice. This can include anything that will help you do your job - from clinical to non-clinical skills such as management, communication or complaints handling. 

And this doesn’t always have to take the format of attending a course. There are lots of opportunities for learning that can count towards CPD for vets and vet nurses, which can be broken down into three categories:

1) CPD that occurs in the practice 

  • Significant event analysis 
  • Formal case/practice discussions 
  • Clinical audit 
  • In-house training 
  • Peer review/feedback

2) Formal CPD delivered by a third party

  • Attending courses, seminars and workshops (for Ireland these must be CVE approved) 
  • Clinical skills labs 
  • Workshops 
  • Conferences 
  • Distance learning 
  • Studying for an external qualification 

3) Self-directed learning 

  • Reading veterinary literature/press 
  • Research 
  • Preparing a new lecture/presentation 
  • Preparing and writing an article/paper 
  • Work-based observation 

How can my VDS membership help me meet my RCVS CPD requirements?

Membership of the VDS provides veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses access to a range of learning options that may count towards your RCVS CPD requirements. VDS members can: 

  • Read the VDS newsletter, which is published three times a year.
  • Read VDS Advice Notes, which are available on the VDS website*. Each are written by one of our expert claims advisors and cover subjects such as medication dosing errors, handling complaints and working outside of your main practice role.
  • Attend a course from VDS Training. There are a range of courses available at a discount for VDS members covering a wide range of topics such as communication, leadership, resilience, and handling difficult situations. VDS Training offers a range of training solutions from online courses to bespoke coaching and training for individuals or the whole practice team that are designed to help every you avoid mistakes, deal with and learn from complaints, build workplaces to help every team member thrive and develop a fulfilling career. If you are interested in finding out more about the training courses from VDS Training, please click here to visit the VDS Training website.
  • Undertake significant event analysis using VetSafe*, such as completing morbidity and mortality rounds and case discussions following submission of a VetSafe report. VetSafe is the VDS's confidential online significant event reporting tool that helps VDS members to learn from mistakes and embed solutions that reduce patient harm and improve outcomes for all involved.
  • Attend a free VDS or VDS Training webinar either live or watching it back, such as 2021's webinar series with BVA on Good Veterinary Workplaces or 2022's series on Greener Veterinary Workplaces. Keep your eyes peeled for our 2023 series.
  • Attending an event like our Graduate Reunions or Graduate Support Day.

*Note that you'll need to be logged in as a VDS member to access this content.

Whatever CPD you choose to do, make sure you record your CPD on the RCVS 1CPD digital learning platform, and include what the learning activity was, how long it took and your reflections on what you learned and how it has impacted your practice.

If you or your practice has VDS cover but you’re unsure how to access your full member benefits or you don’t have your member log on details, please contact our Membership team on 01565 652737. Similarly, if you haven’t been receiving your VDS newsletter or would like to start receiving an email version instead of the traditional print version, you can update your details and preferences here or contact our Membership team who will be able to help you.

What about Irish members?

For our Irish members, the VCI has slightly different CVE requirements than the RCVS. You can read all about your VCI CVE requirements on the VCI website here and how VDS membership can help with CVE requirements here.  

VDS Training Services Limited (trading as VDS Training) is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Veterinary Defence Society Limited.

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