The RCVS Standards Committee has reintroduced the dispensation which allows veterinary surgeons to prescribe veterinary medicines remotely, in advance of the forecast wave of Omicron infections. 

Chair of the Standards Committee, Dr Melissa Donald, said: “We were very aware of the likelihood that both practice staff and clients will increasingly have to isolate over the coming weeks due to direct infection or positive contacts, particularly with the rise in cases amongst school children.

“Added to this, we know there are already workforce pressures across the profession, which will be exacerbated by reduced staffing levels over the Christmas and New Year period.

“We therefore felt it was appropriate to reintroduce these temporary remote prescribing measures at this time to help relieve pressure on practising professionals, and to provide them with the means to continue to look after the health and welfare of their patients in all circumstances.”

As before, the temporary dispensation is subject to the specific guidance found in FAQ4 (, including that veterinary surgeons must be able provide a 24/7 follow-up service involving physical examination, for example where the animal does not improve, or suffers an adverse reaction, or deteriorates, subsequent to the remote prescription of medicines.

The Committee agreed that the position should be reviewed in February 2022 at its next meeting.

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