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An expansive new training programme for Veterinary Care Assistants has been launched this month by IVC Evidensia.

An expansive new training programme for Veterinary Care Assistants has been launched this month by IVC Evidensia.

New IVC Evidensia VCA Training Programme Launched As Nurse Training Ramps Up

1 year ago

27th January, 2023 14h58

IVC Evidensia UK & IE

An expansive new training programme for Veterinary Care Assistants has been launched this month by IVC Evidensia. 

Around 500 recruits are expected to go through the online VCA training in the first year alone, with the 12-week course, also available for all VCA staff, set to have a major impact on clinics. 

As the largest veterinary employer in the UK, IVC Evidensia are taking a leading role in using online elements to make the VCA training even more accessible and attractive. 

Dynamic training strategy 

It’s just part of a dynamic new strategy involving the IVC Evidensia Academy which is ramping up for 2023. 

It includes a new intake in January of satellite training for aspiring RVNs as well as a hugely successful Confidence in Consulting training programme. 

The new VCA training has been adapted from a well-established programme run by Vets Now and tailored by IVC Evidensia to fit all their first opinion and referral establishments. 

“Everything we have put in place is designed to support our amazing nurses and provide a career structure for the support team,” said Liz Cox, IVC Evidensia Group Nursing Advisor. 

“VCAs play a hugely important role, taking on non-clinical tasks to free up veterinary surgeons and RVNs. This will help our practices provide comprehensive VCA training internally, when finding training time within practice can be a challenge.  

“The aim is to give all new employees a comprehensive grounding in the basics, completing their induction before they go on to do the full VCA apprenticeship.” 

The VCA course covers a whole range of aspects including animal handling, patient safety and infection prevention control. 

It is supported by an in-clinic mentor as well as the online learning.  

Vet nurse satellite training 

The satellite training for student veterinary nurses offers a real alternative to the traditional model of in-practice training with one day per week in college. 

“The satellite model gives an opportunity for wider access and increased diversity of learning methods and access to quality teaching and learning provision,” said Ms Cox.  

“Our students can learn live via online lectures with no need to travel. That reduces time, cost and the environmental impact as well as making it easier geographically. 

“Where you live can be a real barrier to learning and we are trying to do things differently. 

“The traditional college approach is still very much available, but we want to offer all the support possible by providing this alternative format.” 

Those undertaking small animal studies will attend between eight and ten sessions annually at one of five regional IVC Evidensia centres across the country.  

The company are the only employer making the same online offering available for equine, with three clinic locations available. 

Through a collaboration with the College of Animal Welfare, the appealing and flexible training is available to both IVC Evidensia staff and those outside the company. 

The programme began in September 2022 and has been so successful the number of intakes throughout the year is being increased. 

Most satellite sites will now be offered up to four times a year, with one intake this month and the next at Easter. It’s anticipated there will be up to 150 nurses per intake throughout the sites. 

Confidence in consulting numbers increase 

The Confidence in Consulting training has already been undertaken by 400 nurses and a further 200 have signed up and are awaiting training. 

Open to all IVC Evidensia nurses, it supports the confidence in their ability to consult and teaches communication skills, reflection and how to structure a consultation. 

“Veterinary nurses are an integral part of the clinical team, and these training areas support the Nurse Evolve programme where we encourage all our nurses to utilise their skills to the fullest,” said Ms Cox.  

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