2016 December - President's Report

And before you know it another festive season looms on our horizon, and another issue of Boardtalk is published! 

This has been a year of consolidation for the Board, with no changes in administrative personnel or Board members, and no overwhelming controversies facing the Board.  However the day-to-day process of regulation has continued, and the evolution of policies and procedures to standardise the Board’s operations is a never ending process.

Boardtalk has become one of the primary methods of communication from the Board to the profession at large.  It provides clarification on many of the regulatory issues that face veterinarians on a daily basis.  The topics covered in Boardtalk are derived through review of communications with the Board to ensure their relevance. 

Additionally the feedback provided to the Board by the Hospital Inspector, Glenn Lynch, gives a real practical and first-hand insight to the regulatory issues faced by veterinarians in NSW.  

The complete series of Boardtalk articles and inserts comprises the best FAQ of regulatory issues concerning the veterinary profession available, and it is searchable on the Board’s website! 

You would be surprised that many apparently obscure questions you have about the Veterinary Practice Act 2003 are thoroughly answered in the archives of Boardtalk, and I encourage you to take advantage of this resource.

As I consider previous editions and this new edition of Boardtalk, I am struck by how immediately pertinent all the articles are to veterinary practice at the coalface.  In recent times the interface of the Poisons and Therapeutics Goods legislation and our own Act have been increasingly brought to the attention of the Board, and the description of rules applying to Drug Labelling addresses one area where small errors can have significant consequences.

I am old enough to know a time before mandatory Continuing Professional Development.  I distinctly remember discussions with my colleagues where it was said that such a mandate would be vigorously opposed by the profession, and would never become the norm.  I disagreed with my colleagues at the time, as I saw in veterinarians the recognition of the value of lifelong learning.  It is no surprise to me now to see that, through the CPD program in NSW and the process of CPD Audits, so few veterinarians fail to achieve their CPD requirement AND so many veterinarians vastly exceed their points requirement.  It is now an accepted part of our normal professional responsibility to make efforts to keep “up-to-date” with the rapidly expanding knowledge base of our profession.

Despite being called the “holiday season” the next few months often represent the part of the year when many veterinarians spend more time at work.  It is my sincere hope that you all have the opportunity to maintain some of that mythical work-life balance by relaxing and spending time with loved ones.

So from all the Board members and staff I wish you a very merry Christmas, and a happy and safe New Year!

Mark Simpson