A practice which has transformed its performance and a vet who has combined clinical excellence with strong business acumen were two of the winners at the Annual CVS Awards presented on Friday 29 November. The Awards Ceremony formed part of CVS’ Annual Conference, attended by more than 300 staff from the UK’s largest and fastest growing corporate practice. It took place at The Barcelo Hotel in Hinckley, Leicestershire, from 29-30 November with the Awards presented at a special gala dinner.
Farthings Veterinary Group, a practice which has been serving pet owners in Horsham and Billingshurst in West Sussex for 50 years was announced as CVS Practice of the Year. Acquired by CVS in 2010, it went on to experience a turbulent two years because of increased competition and disruption caused by a large building development. During 2013, however, excellent community engagement, combined with a balanced clinical development plan and whole team approach has transformed its performance.
Karen Robinson MRCVS, Clinical Director, commented: “The many initiatives we have introduced, whether to support our staff more closely; manage our business more effectively; boost our profile in the community or ensure we provide an even better service to our clients have contributed to Farthings’ excellent performance this year. We were delighted to win the CVS Practice of the Year Award. It’s an achievement of which we’re very proud and to which the whole team has contributed.”
Emily Caddick, who practices at the Nine Mile Veterinary Hospital near Wokingham, Berkshire, won the Special Achievement Award, in recognition of her work to establish a regional emergency clinic, Emmview Emergency Clinic, in Wokingham and of her performance both clinically and in managing the business aspects of her practice. Sue Gorman MRCVS, Regional Director at CVS, who nominated Emily, commented: “Emily is an outstanding vet. She is clinically excellent and shows exceptional client care. In her first year as Clinical Director of The Nine Mile Veterinary Group she has overseen the opening of a new branch and the setting up of the Emmview Emergency Clinic. She also teaches internal medicine to new graduates on our New Graduate Scheme and acts a mentor on our Aspirational Leadership Scheme. She has rapidly developed an understanding of the financial side of the business. She is an inspiration to her team.”
Emily Caddick added: “I was so shocked to win and deeply touched that my colleagues had taken the trouble to nominate and vote for me. It was a lovely feeling!”
In addition to the Awards, the CVS Conference featured guest speakers Mark Leonard and Marina Grazier from Oxford University’s Mindfulness Exchange, who discussed progress and next steps with for CVS’ ‘Mindfulness’ training programme and Professor Steve Dean, Chairman of the Kennel Club, who gave an insight into research funding and other support it could provide through the Kennel Club Charitable Trust.
The conference also featured a diverse CPD programme aimed at veterinary surgeons, veterinary nurses and practice managers. Clinical topics included diagnosis and management of hip dysplasia; sub-lingual immunotherapy and ocular emergencies; concordance and compliance; dealing with client complaints and avian and reptile nursing; the future of veterinary anaesthesia and a practical diabetes workshop.
Simon Innes, Chief Executive of CVS, said: “This year’s Conference was a fitting way to mark the end of a tough but successful year. The Awards recognised some truly inspirational work by a number of our colleagues and the CPD programme was broad-ranging in order to meet the development needs of all of our staff. More than anything, the Conference is a great opportunity for the team to get together, to relax and to celebrate all their hard work. It was a great occasion.”
CVS UK Ltd is the largest and fastest-growing corporate veterinary group in the UK. Founded in 1999, it employs more than 2,300 staff at its veterinary practices and surgeries across the UK and in its related veterinary businesses, including an online pharmacy, two pet crematoriums and six veterinary laboratories.
Key to its success is CVS’ ability to attract ambitious veterinary staff and to invest in their clinical skills, knowledge and in research to drive the profession forward. It also provides the business support to ensure its diverse range of small animal, large animal and equine practices achieve their full potential. CVS works in close partnership with the wider veterinary profession and industry colleagues.