- QI CPD
- Clinical audit
- Significant event audit
- QI Discovery and Coaching: Helping you improve patient care
- Blogs on patient safety and clinical human factors
- What Matters to You?
- Videos, Podcasts, References and more
- QI in action
RCVS Knowledge is a charity that supports thousands of dedicated vets and vet nurses to deliver high-quality care to millions of animals around the world.
We do this by providing free tools, resources and education; so that vets and vet nurses have the best available evidence to hand when they make decisions that can save and improve animals’ lives.
As a small charity with a big responsibility, we rely on donations to help us help veterinary professionals improve the care animals receive. If you are an animal owner or veterinary professional, the work we do matters to you.
Ways to support RCVS Knowledge
There are many different ways you can support us, and many ways that we can support you. Examples of voluntary roles with RCVS Knowledge include:
- championing our Quality Improvement campaign
- transcribing with our Digital Collections
- joining the inFOCUS clinical review team.
We are very grateful to our supporters who donate time, money or clinical expertise to help us advance the quality of veterinary care for the benefit of animals, the public, and society.
If you would like to speak with us about donating your time or clinical expertise, please get in touch.
Find out why our volunteers support us by watching the videos below, which were created for 'Giving Tuesday'.
Transcripts for 'Just Giving' Videos
Hi I'm Alison Skipper. I've been a small animal vet for a long time, and I'm also currently writing up a PhD in Veterinary History at Kings College London, funded by the Wellcome Trust.
The library, archives and staff at RCVS Knowledge have been an invaluable help during my research, and so I was really pleased to be able to give something back by volunteering for the transcription project.
I really enjoyed this insight into the early years of our profession, and I got a lot better at reading early Victorian handwriting. My own thesis looks at the history of health and disease in pedigree dog breeding. Through RCVS Knowledge, I was able to read through 100 years worth of veterinary journals, and see letters from the past that gave me a unique insight into the story of canine health work.
But I've also learnt a lot about our profession in other ways. Most of the issue and challenges we face today have a long history, and RCVS Knowledge preserves that history to inform our professional futures.
It helps us gain perspective on animal welfare and science, it helped me understand what I could do for pedigree dog health and why. And maybe, it can help you understand your place in our profession, and how you can help contribute to our common future.
Hello my name is Louise Buckley I'm a veterinary nurse and I've been involved with RCVS Knowledge for about five years now. So I currently sit on the editorial board for Veterinary Evidence, I review submissions that come in, I'm a member of the inFOCUS clinical review team and I am also the author of about nine different Knowledge Summaries.
So I use the RCVS Knowledge resources extensively in my role as an educator and through extracurricular activities like journal clubs aimed at vet students. So I'm currently running a course on evidence-based practice aimed at paraprofessionals, like clinical animal behaviourists and that's built heavily around the EBVM learning resource but also utilizes things like the toolkits and the significant event and clinical auditing templates that RCVS Knowledge provides.
I also use these QI resources to develop my educational governance and now regularly run significant event audits and educational audits on aspects of my teaching. So if you're watching this and you're interested in getting involved, I would say go for it! Whether you've got time to offer, money to offer you really won't regret it.
RCVS Knowledge is playing a key role in shaping the future of our veterinary profession and we really would love you to be more a part of that process. Thank you for listening.
Yaiza Gómez Mejías
Hi, my name is Yaiza, and I am a small animal practitioner working in the UK and Spain. I volunteer with RCVS Knowledge as a member of the clinical review team for inFOCUS. This involves helping to identify the most useful articles to include, and helping to make sure that the summaries are clinically relevant. inFOCUS is a way of keeping up-to-date with the latest evidence. It watches a wide range of veterinary journals, to provide vets with summaries of interesting and recent publications that are relevant to their work.
Every 2 months, you receive in your inbox a newsletter containing those summaries and a bottom line for implementation in practice. As the number of monthly publications available is rather large, it may be difficult to keep up. Vets and vet nurses are busy and there is not much time for reading. The Knowledge Library does a great job by picking the most useful information and offering it to you in a reader-friendly manner. Amongst the different ways you may choose to help improving the veterinary profession, supporting RCVS Knowledge is definitely a good one.
Hi, my name is Danny Chambers, I'm a Trustee of the charity RCVS Knowledge, and I find my involvement with this organisation extremely rewarding because the information that we provide empowers vets and vet nurses to incorporate evidence-based medicine into their daily veterinary practice. And that has a huge impact on animal health and welfare. And we'd absolutely love you to be involved as well, and one of the best ways you can do that is to help answer one of our Knowledge Summaries.
Now, a Knowledge Summary is an answer to a very specific question that we deal with on a daily basis within veterinary practice, just for example, what type of suture pattern should we use to close the linear alba. And if you are involved in either submitting a question or, with the help of the RCVS Knowledge staff, publishing an answer to that, the information you provide will go globally, and it will affect how vets make decisions regarding that situation worldwide. And the feeling you get knowing you are impacting animal welfare on a global scale is absolutely phenomenal. So I'd really encourage you to get involved in answering one of these RCVS Knowledge Summaries. Thank you.
Hello, I'm Jenny Brown and I volunteer for the RCVS Knowledge Quality Improvement team. Alongside my role in first opinion practice, I'm the clinical lead for RCVS Knowledge's new project to create a national audit of post-operative outcomes. I chose to get involved with this project because quality improvement is something that I've become really interested in over the last few years alongside looking at human factors and how we can limit avoidable harm.
Through this project, I hope to play my part in making the journey surgical journey as safe as it can be for the patients that are entrusted into our care. I also feel that by donating my time to this project I'm giving something back to the profession that I've loved being part of for over 16 years. RCVS Knowledge is playing a part in shaping the future of our profession and I'm really excited to be involved. If you want to get involved with volunteering for RCVS Knowledge, I'd really encourage you to do it. It doesn't have to be a huge commitment, you'll get to meet some amazing people along the way even if it is only virtually at the moment!
Hello, I'm Amanda Boag, Chair of the RCVS Knowledge Board of Trustees. It's been a huge year for the charity. 2020 has been a challenging year. We've adapted our work to ensure our resources were delivered to veterinary professionals when they needed them most. The wide-reaching impact of our resources has made a difference across the industry, with colleagues including Blue Cross, CVS, RSPCA, PDSA and Vets Now accessing our COVID hub, enabling them to deliver the best possible care to animals who needed it in challenging circumstances.
The RCVS Knowledge team is driven by a passion for improving veterinary care. None of our work would be possible without the support so many people donate to us, whether it be financial contributions, clinical expertise or trustee support. If you can support us in any of these ways please get in touch by our website. Thank you to everyone who has supported RCVS Knowledge this year.
Hello my name is Helen Silver MacMahon. I'm a veterinary nurse and I volunteer with RCVS Knowledge's Quality Improvement team. Alongside my work as an education consultant and my master's on patient safety and clinical human factors, I'm on the Quality Improvement features working group and the inFOCUS clinical review team. I find it hugely rewarding to collaborate with like-minded people, passionate about ensuring patient safety through the implementation of quality improvement and human factors in practice.
As part of the Animal Health Trust theatre team, I was delighted to receive a Knowledge Champion award for our use of the surgical safety checklist. RCVS Knowledge's work is so important within the veterinary profession and the resources they produce are interesting, easy to use and freely available. So whether you are considering donating money or time to this fantastic charity I'm sure you'll be inspired and find it extremely rewarding.
The resources provided by RCVS Knowledge have been amazing as they are so clear and easy to follow. In addition, the team at RCVS Knowledge have been incredibly helpful when I've needed further clarification and advice.
Louise Northway, CertVNECC NCert(Anaesth) Registered Veterinary Nurse
Where your money goes
We put the latest, reliable information into the hands of busy veterinary professionals, to help them to treat serious and challenging illnesses every day.
Our work supports veterinary educators and researchers to strengthen the knowledge passed on to the next generation of veterinary surgeons and nurses, and to deepen their understanding of the profession.
I think of the Library team as ‘invisible’ members of ours – helping us to give the best care to our patients!
Sheila Holford, BVSc MRCVS
Simple access to research
We open up access to scientific research on all areas of animal health, so that veterinary surgeons and nurses can make decisions about animal care based on the best available evidence.
- Veterinary Evidence: our groundbreaking online open-access journal provides new research on the best ways to handle a wide range of conditions.
- inFOCUS: we select and summarise the latest research with the potential to impact animal care from more than 100 journals to help busy veterinary professionals stay up to date.
- Library and Information Service: we provide the only comprehensive veterinary library available to all qualified veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses in the UK, and give our members detailed support on finding the information they need.
Knowledge Summaries have certainly changed the way I practice. They have encouraged me to be more self-reflective in my daily practice and also taught me to challenge the norm.
Adam Swallow, BVSc MRCVS
Quality improvement resources
We offer a range of free resources to help vets and their teams to carry out the highest quality of work that they can:
- Templates and case examples for creating guidelines, checklists, audits and more.
- Data to help practices to review the surgery they perform on cats, dogs and other small animals.
- Courses, commentaries and podcasts on how to make care consistently better using quality improvement techniques.
I knew I wanted to complete a clinical audit to assess our effectiveness in managing pain post-operatively. The Quality Improvement resources really helped me with this, specifically the use of the 'Clinical Audit Template' in the planning stages of the clinical audit and how to review these effectively.
Sara Hillyer, BVSc BSc(Hons) MRCVS
We offer a unique collection of digitised and print historical materials, so that vets, vet nurses, researchers and others to learn about and from the profession’s past:
- We have created the largest digitised collection of historical veterinary material globally, enabling anyone around the world to enrich their studies or knowledge for free.
- We preserve rare and beautiful books, letters, artwork and other artefacts on behalf of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, including works by all the major
veterinary authors in the past 500 years.
- We protect and enrich veterinary heritage by welcoming records from all kinds of veterinary practices into our digital collections for the benefit of historians and the broader public.
The quality is excellent and easily navigable, as well as being very interesting. I'm reassured to know that the digitisation of these texts has preserved them for the future.
Ben Harris, MA VetMB CertSAM FLS DipECVIM-CA MRCVS
Purchase digital prints
High quality prints of spectacular images from our Historical Collections are also available to buy via our Print Shop.
Thank you for your support.
Data protection - Protecting your privacy is important to RCVS Knowledge.
As a charity, we rely on donations to help us support as many vets and vet nurses as possible to make improvements to the care that pets and other animals receive, every day.
Your donation – no matter how large or small – will enable us to continue to provide/expand our resources that ensure vets, vet nurses and veterinary educators have access to the full history and latest scientific evidence when they make critical decisions about how to treat and care for sick animals.
If you are an animal owner, this means that your pets will be treated and cared for based upon the best available evidence, advancing the quality of patient care.
If you are a vet, our work will support you to put animal health and welfare at the forefront of your practice, by providing the scientific grounds on which to base decisions.
Without donations, we cannot continue to provide access to our wide range of resources, including our courses, events, educational materials, publications, archives and more. Help us to ensure that evidence continues to play its important role in veterinary medicine.