The RCVS has launched its new Charter Case Committee (CCC), which aims to provide an alternative, compassionate and streamlined way of dealing with less serious cases of professional misconduct.

The Committee has been named after the Supplementary Royal Charter 2015 which broadened the functions of the RCVS and allowed for a more flexible approach when dealing with complaints about professional conduct.

The Charter Case Committee can resolve cases where the conduct of a veterinary surgeon or nurse has fallen far below the level of conduct expected of them, but not so far as to warrant a full, public Disciplinary Committee hearing.

The Committee can deal with such cases without the need for a public hearing and can give veterinary surgeons or nurses either a confidential or a public warning about their future conduct.

A warning issued by the Charter Case Committee does not affect the individual’s registration status or their right to practise.

Eleanor Ferguson, RCVS Registrar, said: “The establishment of the Charter Case Committee plays a vitally important role in balancing our statutory role of upholding professional conduct standards and protecting animal health and welfare and public confidence in the professions, with our mission to become a compassionate regulator.

“The Charter Case Committee Protocol allows for the alternative resolution of certain cases where a veterinary surgeon or veterinary nurse has engaged in behaviour that amounts to serious professional misconduct or has been convicted of an offence, but where it is not in the public interest for the matter to be referred to a hearing of the Disciplinary Committee because it is at the lower end of seriousness.

“The type of cases we envisage being dealt with by the Committee are those where the Code has been breached but where there is no ongoing risk to animal welfare or public confidence, and where the level of insight and personal reflection regarding their conduct is such that it can be resolved without the need for an onerous, stressful and expensive Disciplinary Committee hearing.

"We estimate that the CCC will deal with around 20 such cases per year.

“The most serious cases of professional misconduct will, of course, continue to be referred to Disciplinary Committee hearings.”

PS: Whilst you're here, take a moment to see our latest job opportunities for vets.