The RCVS Practice Standards Scheme (PSS) is a voluntary initiative to accredit veterinary practices in the UK. By setting these standards and carrying out regular inspections and assessments, the scheme promotes practices and hospitals to maintain the highest standards of veterinary care. Through these accreditations, clients are able to recognise the level and standard of care that their pets will receive and are able to make more informed choices about where to receive treatment from. To become accredited, practices put themselves forward for independent, rigorous assessment every four years and must meet a range of standards including:
Hygiene – Adequate disinfectants and dilution protocols must be adhered, to ensure minimal risk of infection. Adequate personal protection equipment must be available to barrier nursing and isolation facilities available.
24-hour emergency cover – Adequate staffing must be provided to facilitate 24 hour emergency care.
Staff training – All members of staff must receive adequate training and instruction. Qualified Registered Veterinary Nurses and Registered Veterinary Surgeons are required by law to complete a set amount of hours facilitating Continual Professional Development (CPD). This is to ensure that their knowledge and expertise are constantly kept up to date with the progressions and advances in veterinary medicine.
Equipment, laboratory facilities and procedures – the level of accreditation practices are awarded also depends on the type of equipment you facilitate. What diagnostic equipment you have, what anaesthesia monitoring you use etc. Surgical and diagnostic facilities must be adequate for the species in which it is intended to treat and endure regular quality control and maintenance to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our patients, staff and clients.
Health and Safety – Rigorous health and safety training, protocols and assessments must be carried out and assessed in order to maintain safe working environment and to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our patients and clients. Full health and safety compliance must be demonstrated by all members of staff.
Accurate patient records – Patient records must be accurate, case histories must be easily retrievable and client confidentiality respected. Also, the recording of anaesthesia, anaesthesia recovery and in-patient care must be carried out, present and easily accessed for inspection.
Practices are also subject to spot-check between assessments.
We are very proud of our accreditations and continuously strive to maintain our high standards of veterinary care.