Recognised standards to be set on equine dental treatments

By: Horse Deals

Recognised standards to be set on equine dental treatments
Recognised standards to be set on equine dental treatments

The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) and the British Association of Equine Dental Technicians (BAEDT) have combined forces to set recognised standards for equine dental treatment.

These should make it safer and easier for owners to source the most suitable dental treatment for their horses.

The organisations are working in association with the RCVS, BVA, BVDA, WWAED and LANTRA to develop National Occupational Standards that will pave the way to allowing equine dental technicians the freedom to work within the Law under an Exemption Order.

Currently all equine dental care falls within the Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966 (VSA) and, as such, should only be carried out by veterinary surgeons.  Equine vets from BEVA and equine dental technicians from the BAEDT have been trying to address this anomaly with government for many years.

In 2004 the organisations drew up a list (revised in 2009) of procedures that could be safely carried out by suitably qualified equine dental technicians and a list of those which should only be carried out by qualified veterinary surgeons because they involve sensitive tissues.

The envisaged Exemption Order will also provide better protection for horses and their owners by reinforcing the fact that only suitably qualified individuals are allowed to carry out equine dental care and treatments.  While unqualified individuals should become easier to identify under the proposed new scheme, those qualified will also be held to account if their performance is not up to scratch.

The first step towards the Exemption Order is the drawing up of National Occupational Standards for Equine Dental Technicians. It is hoped that these will be formalised by LANTRA in early 2013.

Keith Chandler, BEVA President said "After many years of working closely with the BAEDT on the continuing education and qualification of its members, we are thrilled that progress is finally being made towards an Exemption Order."

BAEDT Chair, Gemma Lilly, said: "BAEDT and its membership is very happy to be a key part of the team that hopes to put the Exemption Order in place - it will be good news for equine dental technicians, horse owners, and their animals."

Equine Dental Technician and member of the Worldwide Association of Equine Dentists, Martin Brookes, also supports the initiative. "This will be a really important step forward for responsible Equine Dental Technicians.  It will further improve the working relationships between EDTs and vets and help to protect the welfare of the horse."


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