The Veterinary Surgeons Board of South Australia (the VSBSA) is consulting members of the public and veterinary surgeons on a review of its Continuing Professional Development Guidelines for Veterinary Surgeons (CPD Guidelines).
The VSBSA is responsible for exercising its statutory functions under the Veterinary Practice Act 2003 with the object of protecting the public interest and animal health, safety and welfare by achieving and maintaining high professional standards of competence and conduct in the provision of veterinary treatment in South Australia.
One of the VSBSA's statutory functions is to prepare guidelines on continuing professional development (CPD) for veterinary surgeons in South Australia. Veterinary surgeons must then provide specified information about their completed CPD activity to the VSBSA in an annual return. If a veterinary surgeon fails to provide this information by the due date, then the veterinary surgeon's registration may be cancelled by the VSBSA.
CPD is the process by which a veterinary surgeon maintains, improves and broadens their skills and knowledge, and develops personal qualities to ensure that they remain professionally competent to provide veterinary treatment to animals at a high standard.
Importantly, CPD provides a foundation for veterinary surgeons to comply with the VSBSA's Code of Professional Conduct for Veterinary Surgeons, and to uphold the public's trust and confidence in the profession.
The current CPD Guidelines require updating to provide clearer direction to veterinary surgeons on how to plan, record, substantiate and report their CPD activity. They also require updating to reflect the public's expectation that veterinary surgeons must complete sufficient ongoing training to keep abreast of knowledge and skills in their areas of practice so as to maintain high professional standards of competence.
Key proposed changes to the CPD Guidelines include:
Increasing the minimum CPD units over a 3-year period from 60 to 90 (with a minimum of 30 units of structured continuing veterinary education, a minimum of 30 units of collegial learning activity and up to 15 units of self-directed learning activity)
Requiring all veterinary surgeons to comply with the CPD Guidelines (including new graduates in their first year of practice) unless granted an exemption by the VSBSA
Requiring all veterinary surgeons to report in detail about their completed CPD activity in annual returns including defining learning outcomes
The VSBSA welcomes feedback on its proposed new CPD Guidelines. Interested persons/organisations are invited to provide feedback by Monday 13 May 2019 either by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by post: PO Box 7395 Hutt Street Adelaide SA 5000.