Continuing Professional Development
5. GUIDELINES FOR CPD FOR VETERINARIANS AND VETERINARY SPECIALISTS
1.1 It is generally accepted that persons belonging to a specific profession involved in the rendering of professional services, should render such services in a competent and professional manner.
1.2 It is similarly accepted that the consumer of professional services has a rightful expectation that such services will be the best possible contemporary service under the prevailing circumstances.
1.3 The principle of lifelong learning is a cardinal feature of professional degree programmes leading to registration with a professional council.
1.4 Lifelong learning is embodied in continued professional development (CPD) as an essential component of maintaining and enhancing professional skills and knowledge.
2.1 The objectives of the SAVC include amongst others, regulation of the practising of the veterinary profession and the registration of persons practising the profession; exercising effective control over the professional conduct of persons practising the veterinary profession; determining the standards of professional conduct of such persons; encouraging and promoting efficiency in and responsibility with regard to the practise of the veterinary profession; maintaining and enhancing the prestige, status and dignity of the veterinary profession.
2.2 The SAVC may make rules, amongst others, as to the course of conduct to be followed by persons practising the veterinary profession as well as for the minimum standards for facilities at or from which a veterinary profession is practised.
2.3 The Council may institute an inquiry into the conduct of a person who is registered or deemed to be registered in terms of the Act, or into an act or omission by a person practising the profession or into a contravention of the Act, the regulations or the rules.
2.4 It is Council policy to take cognisance of CPD activities of persons registered to practise the veterinary profession if an inquiry into the conduct of the person is instituted as well as in the case of persons seeking re-registration with the Council.
2.5 It is therefore implied that the Council, in view of its objectives, has a responsibility to ensure that registered persons will render professional, competent and contemporary services through the establishment of appropriate mechanisms to ensure participation in appropriate and acceptable continued professional development activities.
2.6 The following guidelines are applicable to veterinary professionals as from 1 April 2006 :
2.6.1 All members who were registered on 1 April 2006 with Council are obliged to comply with CPD requirements and their first three-year CPD points logging period will commence on 1 April 2006 and end on 31 March 2009 .
2.6.2 Members who registered after 1 April 2006 will commence their 3-year CPD term on 1 April the following year.
2.6.3 All members who logged CPD points / maintained a record of CPD points to date will receive credit for those points and be entitled to carry them forward as credits for the first cycle.
3. Definitions and level of participation
3.1 Acceptable continuing education activities are divided into two broad categories:
3.1.1 Structured activities
126.96.36.199 formal educational programmes leading to a specific qualification and accredited as such, and
188.8.131.52 accredited activities with clearly defined outcomes, which may be assessed.
3.1.2 Unstructured activities without specific outcomes which are not assessed.
3.2 Professional veterinary services include the following:
3.2.1 diagnosing and treating,
3.2.2 professional advice derived from the knowledge, skills, resources, attitudes and competence attained from the completion of the veterinary qualification recognised by Council for registration and the practising of the veterinary profession,
3.2.3 surgical interventions,
3.2.4 prescribing, and
3.3 Practice includes clinical services, regulatory and compliance functions, teaching, consultancy and health and welfare management.
3.4 Levels of participation
3.4.1 Practising veterinarians and veterinary specialists should participate in activities commensurate with the requirements to at least maintain contemporary expertise in the relevant category of registration.
3.4.2 Non-practising veterinarians, including retired veterinarians, will not be required to participate in CPD activities. However, CPD must be current and compliant with these guidelines at the commencement of activities as defined above in paragraphs 3.1 to 3.4.
4. Requirements and recording of CPD
4.1 Accreditation of CPD activities will be used to ensure uniformity and provide quality assurance as described in the specific operating procedure.
4.2 One basic point, equivalent to one hour of formal structured lectures, will serve as the guideline against which all other activities will be ranked.
4.3 It will be required to accumulate 60 such points in a 3-year cycle.
4.4 At least 20 points should be derived from structured activities with the balance coming from unstructured activities.
4.5 Documented proof of participation and progress in formal educational programmes as well as attendance and/or completion of structured activities are to be retained by registered individuals.
4.6 A log or record is similarly to be kept by the registered individual of all unstructured activities with details of the nature, scope and duration.
4.7 A summary of all activities is to be submitted on an annual basis on the specific form at the time of payment of maintenance fees. The form is available on the SAVC website at www.savc.co.za.
4.8 All records are to be kept by the veterinarian for 5 years in case retrospective monitoring is required
5. Structured activities
At least 20 points in a 3-year cycle in respect of activities comprising, but not limited to, the following:
5.1 Formal educational programmes
Formal educational programmes of tertiary institutions leading to a higher qualification in the chosen field of veterinary work. No further CPD activities will be necessary while the individual is registered and active in such a programme. The veterinarian needs to submit proof of enrolment/ registration for a formal educational programme with his/ her annual log form.
5.2 CPD courses
Accredited courses arranged by universities, professional associations and recognised private providers, which will augment the chosen field of veterinary work. One point is allocated for each hour of formal lectures and/or practical demonstrations.
Accredited conferences arranged by universities, professional associations and recognised private providers, which will augment the chosen field of veterinary work. One point is allocated for each hour of formal lectures.
5.4 CPD courses and conferences provided by non-accredited service providers
Attendance of scientific lectures, seminars or educational programs in foreign countries or of other professional groups in South Africa which typically will not be mainstream veterinary CPD activities and may include medical-, dental-, public health- and regulatory activities. The activity must augment the chosen field of veterinary work. One point is allocated for each hour of formal lectures and/or practical demonstrations. The veterinarian needs to submit the programme with his annual form and have the proceedings available for monitoring.
5.5 Preparation and publication or presentation of scientific papers related to the field of work.
Five points are allocated to the preparation and presentation of a refereed one-hour lecture or a scientific paper. Credit can only be claimed once for the first presentation or paper on the same topic and is subject to monitoring. Three points are allocated to the preparation and presentation of a non-refereed one-hour lecture or a scientific paper. Credit can only be claimed once for the first presentation or paper on the same topic and is subject to monitoring.
5.6 Preparation and presentation of papers and lectures to the lay public.
Papers for the lay press and lectures for the general public on veterinary or closely related matters. Two points are allocated for the first presentation or paper on the same topic and is subject to monitoring.
5.7 Correspondence courses, audio/video tapes, CD or web based packages
If accredited, specific points will be allocated per course that is critically assessed.
5.8 Accredited written assessment tests on veterinary literature.
One point is allocated per passed questionnaire.
5.9 Preparation and presentation of lectures and practicals to undergraduate and postgraduate students.
Lectures and practicals in veterinary, para-veterinary and/or closely related disciplines. One point for undergraduate and two points for postgraduate lectures are allocated for the first hour of each course lectured and are subject to monitoring.
5.10 Preparation, conducting and/or monitoring of examinations.
Examinations of tertiary institutions and recognised providers in veterinary, para-veterinary and/or closely related disciplines. Two points are allocated for every day or part thereof with a maximum of 10 points in any three-year cycle and is subject to monitoring.
5.11 Masters and PhD promoters and co-promoters.
On completion of students Masters dissertation or PhD thesis, five and ten points respectively and is subject to monitoring.
5.12 Review of scientific articles or books.
Articles or books of a veterinary nature and/or of direct importance to veterinary science. Two points are allocated and is subject to monitoring.
5.13 Preparation and presentation/defence of work related policy/curriculum documents.
As for 5.11 above
Two points are allocated for every day or part thereof with a maximum of 10 points in any 3-year cycle and is subject to monitoring.
5.14 Inquiry bodies and expert witness.
Service on SAVC inquiry bodies or any other veterinary field related investigative/regulatory bodies (e.g. Medicine Control Council) or as an expert witness in any court case. Two points are allocated for every day or part thereof with a maximum of 10 points in any 3-year cycle and is subject to monitoring.
6. Unstructured activities
A maximum of 40 points in a 3-year cycle in respect of activities comprising, but not limited to, the following:
6.1 In-practice training and instruction
Restricted to 20 points in a 3-year cycle. Details to be recorded in personal logbook. Instructor and trainee (if subject to CPD requirements) will receive credits.
The most common forms of in-practice training are:
The type of training given to a new graduate, or a practising veterinarian changing direction in veterinary practice, in order to establish the individual's competency in the new field of work. The more experienced members of the profession will give such training for the first year after appointment. One point is allocated for each week of in-house training.
This training is considered essential to reinforce and enhance the basic training and to impart the additional skills peculiar to the candidate's chosen field of professional activity. Candidates in this category must be encouraged to participate fully at conferences and seminars wherever possible. Training should be supplemented where possible by other more formal forms of CPD related to the new field of work.
One point is allocated for every two hours of documented discussion between professional colleagues. Discussion groups or journal clubs must keep an attendance register of meetings for a minimum of 5 years. This form of discussion could include formal case presentations, medical or surgical rounds, journal article discussions or meetings to share knowledge gained at conferences, courses, seminars or workshops as well as time spent with veterinary specialists e.g. in a referral situation or time spent informally at an academic institution/hospital.
Undergraduate veterinary supervision - One point is allocated for each day of supervision of an undergraduate veterinary or para-veterinary student.
6.2 Reading of books and journals related to the individual's field of work
One point is allocated for every two hours of reading relevant literature with a maximum of fifteen points in any three-year cycle. The date, time spent and literature read to be noted in the personal logbook.
6.3 Correspondence courses, audio/video tapes, CD or web based packages
Programmes accessed via printed or electronic medium either used privately by individuals or in a discussion group. One point is allocated for every two hours of participation with a maximum of 15 points in any three-year cycle. Full details must be recorded in the personal logbook.
6.4 Non-veterinary related courses
Any course attended to improve personal and managerial skills that will assist in providing better service in the veterinarian’s related field of work is eligible for CPD points. Typical examples are courses in the following categories: computer skills, financial management, labour relations and labour law courses. The veterinarian needs to submit the programme with his annual form and have the proceedings available for monitoring. One point is allocated for each hour of formal lectures and/or practical demonstrations with a maximum of 10 points in any three- year cycle.
7. Ad hoc mechanisms for the assessment of CPD
In the case of a complaint being received by the Veterinary Council, which may be considered unprofessional conduct by a veterinarian or veterinary specialist, and which may call into question the professional competency of the veterinarian or veterinary specialist concerned, the onus will be on the veterinarian or veterinary specialist to provide the Council with documented evidence of compliance with the CPD requirements in his/her defence. The Council has the power to investigate the professional conduct and fitness to practise of registered veterinarians and specialists and impose sanctions where necessary.