Wed, 27 October 2021

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Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons


Belgravia House 62-64 Horseferry Road London SW1P 2AF

About Us

Our vision is to enhance society through improved animal health and welfare. To set and uphold standards is our core regulatory function; advancing standards is in line with our purpose as a Royal College.

Our purpose is to set, uphold and advance veterinary standards.

The role of the RCVS
Our role is to safeguard the health and welfare of animals committed to veterinary care. We seek to achieve this by regulating the educational, ethical and clinical standards of veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses, thereby protecting the interests of those dependent on animals, and assuring public health.

As a statutory regulator we are responsible under the Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966 for maintaining the Register of veterinary surgeons eligible to practise in the UK, setting standards for veterinary education, and for regulating the professional conduct of veterinary surgeons. In addition, our Royal Charter allows us to award Fellowships, Diplomas and Certificates to veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses.

RCVS Knowledge is a separate charity established to promote and advance the study and practice of the art and science of veterinary surgery and medicine, by providing the RCVS Library and Information Service and a range of grants largely to support educational and research activities. RCVS Knowledge has a strong focus on facilitating Evidence-Based Veterinary Medicine (EBVM), in order to make veterinary decisions easier, quicker, and less prone to bias or interference from poor quality studies.

RCVS Council
In order to carry out its statutory duties a Council of 42 Members governs the RCVS and meets three times a year.

The breakdown of members is as follows:
• 24 members: elected to Council by the profession itself (in May of each year)
• 14 members: two each nominated to Council by each of the seven UK veterinary schools
• 4 members: appointed by the Privy Council

RCVS Council is supported by a system of committees, sub-committees and working parties, on which sit various members of Council and other appointed individuals.

Operational Board
The President, two Vice-Presidents and Treasurer are elected by Council from its number. Together with the CEO (Chair), the Registrar/Head of Legal Services, the Chair of the Education Committee, the Chair of the Standards Committee, and the Chair of Veterinary Nurses Council, they make up the Operational Board which oversees the management of all College business, matters of governance and the management of resources. The Operational Board reports to RCVS Council.

Full list of current Operational Board members
Full list of current Council members
Full list of current Committee members
The Veterinary Surgeons Act (1966)
The Royal Charter (1967)
RCVS History
For more information, visit RCVS

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