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Veterinary job roles in the UK: how joining Eville & Jones can help further your career

Once you have completed your degree, there are many different paths you can take to advance your career. Many veterinary professionals go into small animal practice, but there are other opportunities available too.

One alternative is to work in a slaughterhouse or abattoir. The welfare of animals is an emotive topic in the UK and it is a legal requirement for slaughterhouses to have vets present in order to protect animal rights.

Why do Official Veterinarians (OVs) work in slaughterhouses?

OVs work to protect animals and they do this in a variety of ways. Vet presence has become increasingly vital to public health as consumer demand for meat products grows. Without the correct controls in place, there would be nobody to protect animals from inhumane slaughter.

What opportunities are there in Public Health?

The Public Health sector gives Veterinary professionals the opportunity to quickly advance their careers. They can gain valuable hands-on experience whilst obtaining the right qualifications to become an Official Veterinarian in the UK.

The following roles are just some of the opportunities available to Vets who choose to pursue a career in Public Health.

Veterinary Meat Hygiene Inspector (VMHI)

Veterinary Meat Hygiene inspectors are responsible for Post Mortem inspections and they ensure that Food Business Owners comply with necessary legislation.

The responsibilities of an MHI include:

  • Ante-mortem Inspections
  • Verifying that animals are properly identified
  • Carrying out post-mortem inspections for detection of abnormalities in all carcases and offal presented
  • Applying ‘health marks’ in accordance with legislation

This is a great opportunity for those wishing to pursue a career as a vet in the UK. VMHIs will register with the Royal College which is the first step to becoming an Official Veterinarian.

Eville and Jones provide all the help you will need to do this, along with theoretical and practical training (all free of charge).

Official Veterinarian (OV)

Her Majesty’s Government appoint Official Veterinarians to conduct work on behalf of the FSA (Food Standards Agency) and the Animal & Plant Health Agency (APHA). This work can take place all over the country, so it’s great for those wanting to explore more of the British Isles and experience everything it has to offer.

Responsibilities include:

  • Animal Welfare – Conducting clinician examinations and ensuring that the correct, humane slaughter of animals is carried out.
  • Detecting of signs of disease that may affect human and/or animal health.
  • Managing and building relationships to ensure effective communication between Vets, Food Business Owners and Veterinary Meat Hygiene Inspectors.

Official Veterinarians must hold membership from the Royal College, and will need to have passed the Official Veterinarian course from an approved University, such as Glasgow or Bristol.

Some companies (such as Eville & Jones) pay for all of their employees to take the OV Course. They will also support applications made for RCVS membership.

Managerial Roles

AVMs (Area Veterinary Managers) co-ordinate and manage teams of Official Veterinarians and Meat Hygiene Inspectors within specific regions. They will also have DAVMs(Deputy Area Veterinary Managers) reporting to them. Managerial staff are integral to delivering a service that is thorough and effective, serves public health and safeguards animal welfare.

Responsibilities include:

  • Co-ordinating and managing OVs and MHI team presence at different locations (e.g. slaughterhouses, abattoirs)
  • Reporting to Senior Managers and communicating with Deputy Managers to solve issues before they arise

Area Veterinary Managers help coordinate and manage Official Veterinarian teams and Meat Hygiene Inspectors. This role requires great managerial and organisational skills, as well as a great understanding of the role and the indicators of performance.

Conclusion

Qualified Veterinarians have the skills, passion and technical knowledge to act in the interest of animals and uphold the health of the general public. It’s an incredibly important job.

There are a variety of different roles available to fit your skills, experience and qualifications. If you’re looking to work in the UK and quickly advance your career, then working with Eville & Jones can help you to do just that.

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