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Gudrun Ravetz elected new president of the BVA

Gudrun Ravetz has been named the new president of the British Veterinary Association (BVA). Sean Wensley, the previous president, concluded his year in the role on September 22 with a final final Presidential Address to 140 people at the BVA Members’ Day. Sean emphasised the strength of the profession in changing times and will remain a member of the Officer team as senior vice president.

Small animal veterinary surgeon Gudrun Ravetz will be BVA President for 2016/2017. John Fishwick, Head of Department at the Royal Veterinary College, was elected Junior Vice President and will join Gudrun and Sean on BVA’s Officer team for 2016/2017.

Awards for vets 

The BVA Members’ Day at the At Bristol Science Centre included the presentation of awards. TheVeterinary Record awards recognise innovation and impact in the profession as well as evidence-based veterinary medicine.

  • The Dalrymple-Champneys Cup and Medal for work of outstanding merit, which it is considered will encourage the advancement of veterinary science, was awarded to Professor Stuart Reid for the distinctive contribution he has made as an exceptional veterinary academic and a gifted researcher.
  • The Chiron Award, presented by BVA for outstanding contributions to veterinary science or for outstanding services to the profession, judged in either case as being of a calibre commanding international or inter-professional recognition, was awarded to Professor Sarah Cleaveland for the contribution she has made as a true champion for One Health and acknowledges the impacts of her research on human and animal health across disciplinary and geographic boundaries.
  • The Trevor Blackburn Award was presented to Heather Bacon in recognition of her outstanding contribution to improving animal health and welfare in developing countries through education, charity work and research. The award particularly recognises Heather’s work with Animals Asia to rehabilitate victims of the bear bile industry as well as her role as Veterinary Welfare Education and Outreach Manager at the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education, part of the University of Edinburgh’s Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, in encouraging the use of manikins and models in place of live animals in veterinary teaching; her research and clinical practice to raise animal welfare and veterinary skills standards within the global zoo community; and her work with street dogs involved in Trap-Neuter-Return programmes.
  • The Bleby Cup was awarded to Moray’s Kathleen Robertson, the BVA Council Representative for Scotland, who was recognised for her outstanding contribution to BVA Council, the Association’s overarching policymaking body.
  • The Harry Steele-Bodger Memorial Scholarship was awarded to vet Peter Richards for his study that addresses the hypothesis that cattle grazing in silvopastoral systems have lower parasite and tick burdens than those grazing on open pasture.

BVA Overseas Travel Grants were awarded to:

  • Bethan Warner and Hannah Smith (Liverpool) jointly for their study on the prevalence of Brown Dog tick in a population of dogs in Zanzibar and its role as a vector of canine tick-borne disease;
  • Chloe Donovan (RVC) for her investigation into the use of antibiotics by pastoralists in Western Kenya;
  • Sam Price (RVC) to carry out research using the measurement of Body Condition Scoring (BCS) in Asian Elephants in Sri Lanka.
  • The Vetwork UK supported grant was awarded to Stephanie Panayiotou (RVC) for her investigation into the impact of educational programmes on the health and welfare of dogs owned by families in Goa.

Veterinary Record Awards

The Veterinary Record Impact Award recognises the research paper published in Veterinary Record over the last 12 months that is considered likely to have the most significant practical impact. The winners this year are:

  • Simon Archer and colleagues from University of Nottingham and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) for a paper on increasing the recommended claw length for foot trimming in dairy cows.

The Veterinary Record Innovation Award is presented to individuals and veterinary teams whose innovation has brought about a change or improvement in any aspect of veterinary practice. This year’s winner is:

  • International Cat Care for its Cat Friendly Clinic programme. The programme was developed after International Cat Care identified a number of problems in the care of cats: Fewer cats were taken to the vet than dogs, with vets seeing a decline in the number of clients with cats.

The Veterinary Record Evidence Award is a new award for this year. It aims to recognise those who have contributed to the development of evidence-based veterinary medicine or its application in practice. The winner of the first Veterinary Record Evidence Award is:

  • The Centre for Evidence-based Veterinary Medicine at the University of Nottingham.

BVA members were also treated to two exclusive viewings at this year’s Members’ Day: the exhibition of winning photographs from BVA’s inaugural photography competition and the premier of the latest ‘Veterinary View’ programme.

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