- Should the kennel cough vaccine be given during COVID-19?
- Can cats transfer COVID-19 to other animals, and is there a risk of zoonosis
- What's the difference between FCoV and COVID-19?
- What can we clean a patient with, and will this kill COVID-19?
- Does ultraviolet light actually kill COVID-19?
- Will good weather affect infection rates of COVID-19?
- When should we test an animal for COVID-19?
- How do Face Coverings work?
- What evidence supports use of face coverings?
- How and when to wear a face covering
- Do ferrets and other mustelids pose a zoonotic risk for COVID-19?
- Mink and COVID-19: The Denmark mutation
- What advice should we give owners of ferrets during COVID-19?
- How can we offer a cat friendly environment during COVID-19?
- How should we handle a ferret in the practice or rescue environment?
Quality Improvement Advisory Board
There are currently 14 members who make up the Quality Improvement Advisory Board (QIAB). They represent the broad scope of veterinary care, as well as human care.
Members of the QIAB were selected by RCVS Knowledge for their drive and commitment to good clinical practice and quality improvement.
Pam Mosedale BVetMed MRCVS, Chair of QIAB
Pam qualified from the RVC in 1979 and worked in mixed practice for the first part of her career, then was a partner in a small animal hospital for 17 years.
Pam joins the RCVS Knowledge QIAB as the Chair of the Board, having had extensive involvement with the college. She was a Practice Standards Inspector from the beginning of the BSAVA practice standards scheme and continued with the RCVS, becoming Lead Assessor from April 2015 till October 2020. She welcomed the increased emphasis on quality improvement and clinical governance, clinical effectiveness and audit in the new scheme.
Pam is editor of the BSAVA Guide to the Use of Veterinary Medicines and an SQP assessor for AMTRA.
Pam first got involved in clinical governance when on BVHA council when she started to look into whether clinical audit could be applied to veterinary practices. She wrote the first article published in the UK on clinical audit in veterinary practices in 1999.
Pam has spoken at BSAVA Congress, BVNA congress, SPVS Congress, BEVA clinical audit workshops, CAW TP conference and on many RCVS webinars and CPD courses about clinical governance, clinical audit and Quality Improvement.
Pam is passionate about QI becoming part of the normal working day for veterinary teams and contributing to a just learning culture in practice.
Dr Laura Playforth BVM&S MSc Adv HCP (Open) MRCVS, Vice-Chair of QIAB
Laura qualified from the University of Edinburgh in 1999. After working in a variety of small animal practices in Yorkshire for eight years, she moved into Emergency and Critical Care as a Senior Veterinary Surgeon at Vets Now.
In the early part of her career at Vets Now, Laura successfully led three different out-of-hours emergency clinics, before being promoted to the role of District Vet and then on to the Head of Veterinary Standards role. Today, she is Vets Now’s Professional Standards Director and is responsible for driving clinical and professional standards. She has extensive experience in utilising clinical benchmarking, governance and guidelines in order to embed best practice across the company's network.
More recent developments Laura and her team have led have focused on patient safety, the use of checklists and significant event review reporting. Laura also works closely with the Vets Now marketing department on a wide variety of digital content, media and PR work.
Laura has an MSc in advancing healthcare practice with the Open University, which aims to develop skills in evidence-based practice, policy development and innovation to facilitate sustainable improvements in care quality. She hopes to bring a fresh and open mind to the QIAB, drawing on more than a decade of experience of clinical leadership in a nationwide provider of first-opinion emergency and critical care.
Alan Radford BSc BVSc PhD MRCVS
Alan qualified from Liverpool Veterinary School in 1993 having also obtained a BSc in molecular biology. After a short locum in Newcastle, he completed an internship in Dublin in Small Animal Medicine. He then returned to the UK to do his PhD on the mechanisms of feline calicivirus persistence. He is currently appointed as Professor of Veterinary Health Informatics at the University of Liverpool.
Alan is a past member of the European Advisory Board of Cat Disease. Since 2008 he has been heading up SAVSNET, the Small Animal Veterinary Surveillance Network. SAVSNET collects large volumes of companion animal electronic health data from UK veterinary practitioners and diagnostic laboratories. These are collated centrally, and used for research and surveillance. These data can also be used to describe practice variation in a range of different measures, offering exciting opportunities for clinical audit through real-time benchmarking.
Alan was the recipient of the RCVS Knowledge Golden Jubilee Grant. The funding was used to establish VETseq, a collaboration between the Veterinary School and the Centre for Genomic Research at the University of Liverpool. Visit our grants page to learn more about this exciting project.
Angela Rayner BVM&S PgDipPSHCF MRCVS
Angie is Director of Quality Improvement for CVS Group and a small animal GP vet. She started her veterinary career as a registered veterinary technician in the U.S. and then made her way to Scotland, to graduate from the R(D)SVS, University of Edinburgh. She won an RCVS Knowledge QI Award for improvements made in controlled drugs auditing and is Co-clinical Lead for their Antibiotic Stewardship Audit.
In 2018, Angie began an MSc in Patient Safety and Clinical Human Factors at the University of Edinburgh. The programme supports healthcare professionals in using evidence-based tools and techniques to improve the reliability and safety of healthcare systems.
It includes how good teamwork influences patient outcomes, key concepts around learning from adverse events and teaching safety, understanding the specialty of clinical human factors, as well as the concept of implementing, observing and measuring change, monitoring for safety, and it focuses on quality improvement research and methodologies.
Angie is passionate about promoting and developing QI to benefit animal welfare and staff wellbeing, through collaboration with veterinary and human healthcare colleagues. She has an interest in a human factors and systems thinking approach and believes that QI can help improve joy in work.
Dr Dan O'Neill MVB BSc(hons) GPCert(SAP) GPCert(FelP) GPCert(Derm) GPCert(B&PS) PGCertVetEd FHEA MSc(VetEpi) PhD FRCVS
Dan graduated in veterinary from Dublin in 1987. After 22 years in industry as well as large and small animal general practice, he gained an MSc in epidemiology in 2009. He was awarded a PhD in 2014 at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) for developing the VetCompass™ Programme to evaluate breed effects on the health of dogs and cats. He is now Senior Lecturer in Companion Animal Epidemiology at the RVC.
Dan has authored over 70 VetCompass™ papers since 2012 that provide welfare evidence and benchmarks relevant to UK companion animals. He has co-authored the 3rd edition of the book ‘Breed Predispositions to Disease in Dogs and Cats’ as well as a book on hamster health ‘Hamsters; in sickness and in health’. He was awarded a fellowship by RCVS in 2018 and the Blaine Award by BSAVA in 2019. His current research programme focusses on breed-related health in dogs and cats based on applying VetCompass clinical data shared from over 30% of UK vet practices.
Prof Debra Archer BVMS PhD CertES(Soft Tissue) DipECVS FRCVS FHEA
Debbie graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1996 and worked in mixed and equine practice before undertaking an equine surgical residency at the University of Liverpool in 2000. During this time Debbie gained the RCVS Certificate in Equine Surgery (soft tissue) and subsequently gained the ECVS Diploma in Equine Surgery in 2004. She completed a PhD between 2003-2006 investigating the Epidemiology of colic at the University of Liverpool. Debbie was appointed as Senior Lecturer in Equine Soft Tissue Surgery in 2006 and subsequently as Professor of equine surgery in 2013. She divides her time between performing equine clinical work and teaching at the Philip Leverhulme Equine Hospital and performing research within the Department of Epidemiology and Population Health (Institute of Global Health, University of Liverpool). Her clinical interest include all aspects of abdominal surgery, upper respiratory tract and urogenital conditions including laser surgery and laparoscopic surgery and management of traumatic injuries. She is head of Equine Surgery at The University of Liverpool and is leading an International Colic Audit (INCISE project) and randomised controlled trial investigating lidocaine in horses following small intestinal surgery (CHARIOT study).
Huw Stacey BVetMed DipAS(CABC) MRCVS
Having graduated from The Royal Veterinary College in 2000, Huw spent ten years in first opinion veterinary practice, beginning in rural North Devon, where he performed a mix of small animal, farm, equine and zoo work. During the Foot and Mouth outbreak of 2001, he was seconded to MAFF in a TVI role.
After four years he transitioned into small animal practice, concurrently undertaking a three-year postgraduate diploma in companion animal behaviour counselling at the University of Southampton.
In 2011, after a short time in industry, he joined what would become the Pets at Home Vet Group as Commercial Manager. He now holds the position of Director of Clinical Services for the group and is responsible for clinical governance and standards across its 450 first opinion veterinary practices.
John Dinsdale BVMS CertAVP MRCVS
John qualified from Glasgow University Veterinary School in 1984, winning the Royal Highland Society Silver Medal for Medicine. Having worked in mixed practice initially, in 1988 he purchased a small animal practice, taking this from a two vet practice to ten vet practice in purpose-built premises.
In 2013, he gained his Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Practice as part of his commitment to continual personal professional development and to support his role as coach and mentor to the veterinary surgeons and nurses within the practice. He has been a director of a nurse training college, BVA new graduate support facilitator, practice owner and founding partner of an emergency care provider.
In 2015, he was promoted to Chief Veterinary Advisor for IVC Evidensia (UK), where he is responsible for clinical standards, professional culture, and Quality Improvement within the group. He instigated Practice Standards as a mandatory core requirement in every practice within IVC Evidensia and maintains an advisory presence in the operational groups within the business. He wants to help build on the professional platform RCVS Knowledge has developed by providing a big picture viewpoint, drawing on over 30 years of continually evolving profession-wide experience.
Kathrine Blackie BVetMed CertAVP MRCVS
Kathrine qualified from the RVC in 1997 and after two years in mixed practice worked as a GP vet in companion animal practice for 20 years, 6 of those as a Clinical Director of a multi-site practice. Her main clinical interest was surgery, and she gained her CertAVP in 2016. Kathrine joined Linnaeus in 2019 as Clinical Standards and Quality Improvement Manager, having developed a strong interest in QI and patient safety. Her current role involves all aspects of QI with the aim of continuously learning and sharing improvements to benefit both our patients and the staff that care for them.
Liz Branscombe DipAVN(Surgical) RVN, Board of Trustees Representative
Liz qualified as a Veterinary Nurse in 1986, initially working in small animal and mixed practice until she joined a private referral practice in 1989, subsequently, she worked at the Royal Veterinary College as a Senior Surgery Nurse between 1993 and 1997. Liz has been employed at Davies Veterinary Specialists since its inception in 1998 undertaking a variety of clinical nursing roles. Liz is currently the Training Manager with responsibility for the development of induction training programmes for all new employees and the planning and implementation of in-house and external training for team members. Liz is proud to have been an elected member of RCVS VN Council from 2006 to 2015 (Chairman 2009-2012), during which time significant milestones for the Veterinary Nursing profession were achieved culminating in Statutory Regulation.
Lizzy Whiting BVSc Cert AVP MRCVS
Lizzy graduated with commendation from Liverpool University in 2001. Her first job was in a rural mixed practice in Staffordshire before she moved to Cornwall in 2007, where she attained the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Certificate of Advanced Veterinary Practice with modules in anaesthesia and pain relief, surgery and medicine. Lizzy is currently taking 2 further C modules in Small animal orthopaedics to aim for her Cert SAS.
Her interests in practice revolves around surgery, including orthopaedic procedures, feline medicine, behaviour in both cats and dogs and osteoarthritis management. Lizzy was the first vet in Cornwall to use stem cell therapy to help an arthritic dog, and includes it as part of the management options for this debilitating disease. Lizzy was elected President of the Cornwall Veterinary Association and initiated the annual day of lectures for vets and nurses across the county. More recently, she has become involved in a national support group for veterinary professionals, which is proving to be both challenging and rewarding.
Lizzy has been an active supporter of QI in practice, leading regular meetings and finding solutions to implement improvements across many areas; including anaesthesia, analgesia, geriatric medicine and compiling clinical guidelines. She was delighted to recently be awarded Highly Commended runner up for our 2020 Knowledge Awards. She is looking forward to being involved in supporting QI in a more formal position and to be able to share her enthusiasm with other members of the profession.
Margaret Mary Devaney BA RGN
Margaret was invited to join the Quality Improvement Advisory Board in 2018. She brings with her the unique experience and perspective of an NHS improver. As well as being a registered nurse, she is the Head of Patient Safety at the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust.
Since qualifying in 1994, Margaret Mary has worked within the NHS, predominantly in high risk critical coronary care and resuscitation care systems. It was here that she found her passion for system-based approaches to improving quality and safety.
In 2013-15 Margaret Mary undertook a Quality Improvement Advisor post with the Academic Health Science Network UCL Partners, to facilitate building improvement capabilities across several formats. Through completion of the Improvement Advisor Programme in 2017 with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), she has continued to develop her in-depth understanding of improvement science theory and the application of improvement tools.
In her current role at the Royal Free, Margaret Mary leads a team of improvement facilitators delivering a three-year patient safety programme. The programme aims to reduce avoidable harm by 50% by 2020.
Outside of work, Margaret Mary has volunteered with a local RSPCA centre; and more recently adopted two energetic kitten siblings, Alice & Hector, from the RSPCA centre in Bedfordshire.
Dr Marnie Brennan BVMS DipECVPH BSc MRCVS
Marnie Brennan is Assistant Professor in Epidemiology at the School of Veterinary Medicine and Science, University of Nottingham. She is a veterinary science graduate from Murdoch University in Perth, Australia. After practising in Australia and the UK, she worked with the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) for a short time before completing a PhD in veterinary epidemiology at the University of Liverpool. She joined the University of Nottingham in 2009.
Marnie is the Deputy Director of the Centre for Evidence-based Veterinary Medicine, where she is involved in a number of projects working directly with practitioners and owners. The Centre aims to enhance the research that is used in clinical decision making by facilitating veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses becoming involved in research prioritisation and enhancing their role as consumers of research. This includes the creation of BestBETs for Vets, an online evidence resource, and the use of clinical audit, and other quality improvement methods in clinical practice.
Marnie is also the creator & coordinator of a postgraduate modular training course for veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses on how to integrate the principles of evidence-based veterinary medicine into practice. She is particularly interested in helping the profession to overcome the challenges associated with conducting clinical audit in ambulatory practice, and the additional benefits that can be gained as a result of undertaking these activities such as job satisfaction and enhanced clinical decision making.
Marnie hopes to bring a realistic and pragmatic approach to the QI board, including helping to design strategies that enable all types of practice to be able to regularly undertake quality improvement activities.
Runa Hanaghan BVSc PgDip SSRM MRCVS
Runa qualified from Bristol University and has had a variety of experience in general practice, working across the UK and returning to her home country of Ireland where she established a sole-charge small animal clinic in Co. Mayo. This community focused clinic presented opportunities to become involved with teaching vet and nursing students along with her excellent veterinary nursing team, leading to a growing interest in checklists and patient safety.
An opportunity to bring this experience and interest to a wider group was taken in 2010 with her appointment as Clinical Lead at Bristol University, teaching undergraduate vet students at their on-site small animal practice. Her role in this busy environment, with ever-changing personnel as students moved through their placements helped to further Runa’s interest in communication and patient safety.
Runa joined Dogs Trust in late 2011 as Deputy Veterinary Director. This is a hugely varied role and one which stays closely connected to the vet practices working alongside the charity nationwide; as well as the procedures that are managed on site at our rehoming centres. She also sits as a committee member on the Association of Charity Vets with a strong interest in shelter medicine and shelter metrics.
A post graduate qualification in Social Sciences Research Methods allowed her to explore the role of non-clinical skills with undergraduate teaching in a research project. An active interest in patient safety has developed with a deeper understanding of the areas that make up quality improvement. She is not only passionate about where this influences animal welfare through clinical care, but also the wellbeing of the team delivering it. Within the charity, active internal reporting of near miss clinical incidents has been established since 2017, signposting to the wider profession the tools that are now available to them. Significant event audits have also become routine from a veterinary perspective and have broadened within the charity to include other teams who manage and care for our dogs, enhancing psychological safety and helping to develop a cultural change with a learning culture.
Participation in the QIAB
Quality improvement is an inclusive initiative and we encourage all members of the veterinary profession to share their knowledge to help provide the best possible care.
If you would like to raise a specific issue for consideration, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
Terms of Reference
The Terms of Reference for the QIAB are available to view and download from the 'Related documents' box.