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Questions Invited For OV Conference Speakers -

10 months ago

18th July, 2019 12h12

Improve International

Free and discounted tickets offered for the submission of interesting questions

The organisers of the 2019 Official Veterinarian (OV) Conference are offering OVs the opportunity to win a free ticket to attend a day of this year’s conference, which takes place on 25-26 September at Alexandra House in Swindon. To win, OVs are asked to submit a question to a speaker of their choice by Monday 12 August. The question judged the most interesting will win the free ticket and five runners up will each receive a 50% discounted ticket. In each case, the OV can choose their preferred day to attend.

The full programme can be found at: and questions can be submitted to or by private message through Facebook at

This year’s conference takes place against the backdrop of an increasing threat from notifiable diseases in the UK, with evidence of M. bovis infection linked to a raw pet food diet identified in cats, an outbreak of equine viral arteritis in Dorset and cases of African swine fever recently reported in western Europe. Speakers will address the increased threat as part of a programme that offers small animal and farm animal focused lecture streams on both days, an equine stream on the first day and a series of specialist workshops on the second.

Dr Andrew Soldan, Veterinary Director at APHA, said: “Notifiable diseases are an ongoing threat to the health and welfare of animals and our farming industries in the UK. Animal keepers and vets play a vital role in their early detection. We’re particularly concerned by the risk of African swine fever following the disease being found in wild boar in Belgium last year.

“Small animal and mixed practice OVs can help us reduce the risk of ASF infecting UK pigs by informing pig keepers of the risk and advising them of the importance of not feeding kitchen scraps and catering waste to pigs.

“We’re currently in the vector season so bluetongue is another disease to look out for in cattle and sheep. Providing advice to livestock farmers on how they can minimise the risk of its introduction through vaccination and checking the source of imported animals is another important role for OVs.”

Mr David Babington MRCVS, Business Development Director at Improve International, said: “OVs play a crucial role in monitoring our exposure to notifiable diseases and in alerting us to possible outbreaks. For this reason, providing a full update on the current disease status is an important element of this year’s programme, though we will also cover other important topics, including illegal puppy imports, pet travel and, inevitably I’m afraid, Brexit.”

For more information on the Official Veterinarian Conference and exhibition or to register visit:

Notes to editors:

The annual OV Conference provides a unique forum in which OVs can discuss current topics of interest and recent developments in their work. It is organised by Improve International, in conjunction with the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) and 5m Publishing, to provide a comprehensive lecture programme. Speakers from APHA will share their expertise in scanning surveillance in poultry, cattle and pathology, as well as topics including TB testing, animal welfare and international trade. An exhibition of products and services tailored for OVs runs alongside the event.

OV training is provided by Improve International, a veterinary CPD specialist, in conjunction with its assessment partner the European School of Veterinary Postgraduate Studies (ESVPS) and Harper Adams University, which validates the qualifications.

Improve International is one of the UK’s leading veterinary training companies with a 20-year track record in providing structured continuous professional development (CPD) for veterinary professionals. Part of Benchmark Holdings and based in Swindon, Improve provides high quality CPD in a range of formats for veterinary surgeons, veterinary nurses, practice managers and receptionists to help them to develop their skills and knowledge, using a combination of review lectures, case-based discussion and, where applicable, hands-on practical sessions.

For further information:

Rebecca George, George PR, Tel: 01449 737281/07974 161108

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