2017 December - Hospital licence forms
The Board has recently updated its Application for a Veterinary Hospital Licence and Application to Transfer a Veterinary Hospital Licence forms. The updated forms address the following important points based on the legislative requirements for hospitals:
- The licence holder of a veterinary practice is generally either an individual veterinarian, a partnership or a company and a veterinarian or veterinarians must have a controlling interest in the partnership or company
- A trust does not meet the requirements to be a licence holder
- The names of veterinarians with a controlling interest in the licence must be listed on the application and each of these veterinarians must sign the application
- There is provision for a contact person other than the superintendent for correspondence such as accounts
- A website address field has been added and the online register will be updated to include this field so that a member of the public can more readily locate your hospital after performing a search
- The veterinarian appointed as superintendent must also sign the form and check that the premises meet the minimum requirements for a licence
- The plans of the premises must be to scale and of suitable quality (prepared by architect or draughtsman)
- The Australian Business Register extract of current information from the website ABN Lookup must be included with the application to ensure the Board has the correct details for the applicant licence holder. The Board will check the ASIC website to ensure the applicant meets the legislative requirements to be a licence holder.
The application to transfer a licence has been similarly updated to ensure the Board has up-to-date information for all licences.
Under the Act changes to any of the above must be updated within 14 days for an existing licence holder and the Board is developing its website to allow licence holders to check the details of their current licence and update the Board as required and annually (similar to the Annual Return for veterinarians).
The Hospital Inspector has noted during his visits that licence holders, superintendents, contact details and even the address of some hospitals has changed without the licence holders informing the Board.
Importantly, if you relocate your hospital you must apply for a new licence. A hospital licence is specific to the premises (location and physical facilities) at the time of approval. Relocating an existing hospital and not applying for a licence will mean you are operating from unlicensed premises and risk substantial fines and imprisonment.
Similarly, if you have changed the ownership details of your hospital licence and this has not been approved by the Board you are also at risk of operating from unlicensed premises.
Further information is also available from the article Nuts and Bolts of Building, Buying or Selling a Veterinary Hospital (Boardtalk June 2017).