RCVS launches survey for the professions to gauge individual impact of coronavirus crisis

Veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses will have the opportunity to provide evidence regarding the impact of the coronavirus pandemic upon their experiences of working as a veterinary professional with the launch, this week, of a new Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) coronavirus survey.

The survey, which is confidential, will ask the professions questions on the impact of the pandemic in areas such as hours worked and working patterns (for example, changing hours or working remotely) as well as how caring responsibilities, home schooling, self-isolation and other pandemic-related factors have affected their ability to work.

In addition, the survey will ask participants to sum up their own experiences of the pandemic, for example, in how well supported they felt by their employers, the mental health impact of the pandemic and its associated restrictions, work-life balance, stress and anxiety levels and so on.

For those who work in clinical practice, the survey will also ask questions around access to personal protective equipment, remote consultations, how ‘in person’ consultations have had to be conducted, personal safety at work, and impact on caseload, among other things.

Lizzie Lockett, RCVS CEO, says: “While our previous six coronavirus impact surveys have involved taking a snapshot of the more immediate situation for veterinary businesses at the various different stages of the crisis, this survey is about taking a deeper, retrospective look at the impact on the personal and professional lives of our members in the last year and a half.

“We know that it has been an extremely tough period of time for the professions and that our veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses have carried on doing their vital work for animal health and welfare, while under considerable personal and professional worry and strain.

“This survey, which is confidential, is an opportunity for members of the professions to give a frank and honest account of what has happened since March 2020 and how they have felt. We would strongly encourage people to engage with the survey as it will help us at the RCVS to gain a deeper understanding of your experiences, help us to respond to any future waves of the pandemic, supply evidence to Government about any impact to support future guidance changes, and capture a snapshot of this historic period.”

The online survey is conducted on behalf of the RCVS by the Institute for Employment Studies (IES) and will run until Monday 23 August 2021. Emails containing the link to the survey will be sent by IES to all veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses in the UK for whom the RCVS holds an email address. Those who have not yet received an email by Monday 26 July 2021 should contact Sara Butcher, IES Project Support Officer, on Sara.Butcher@employment-studies.co.uk. Regular reminder emails will be sent to those who have not yet participated.

The reports on the results of the previous RCVS coronavirus business impact surveys can be found at www.rcvs.org.uk/publications

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