About Us

The Society for Practising Veterinary Surgeons (SPVS Ltd) can trace its origins back to 1933, when the Veterinary Practitioners’ League was formed, later  becoming the first specialist division of what was then the National Veterinary Medical Association (now the BVA). It championed the interests of practitioners, helping to secure their involvement in the emerging State Veterinary Service as Local Veterinary Inspectors (LVIs). In spite of its name, it attracted membership from across the profession including research workers, officers of local and other authorities, and several professors.

Over the next 20 years it began to focus on the effective running of veterinary enterprises, with a 1957 report concluding that it should be on sound business and ethical lines.  SPVS, as it was then, sought to lead by example and that remains the focus today.

Vision

Produce holistic support to veterinary practices to ensure they are sustainable, profitable, happy and productive places to work within

Mission

Our aim is to facilitate a culture of support and community for practice owners and veterinary leaders through the development of industry leading provision and representation. Supporting students through to retirees, SPVS is dedicated to supporting veterinary professionals through each stage of their career.

Values

SPVS is dedicated to building a culture of supported, ethical and profitable veterinary practices
SPVS is committed to a sustainable future and to improving the social, economic and environmental well being of the veterinary community

SPVS Board

President: Silvia Janská BSc(Hons) MSc BVetMed PgCertVBM MRCVS
Silvia is a high-energy individual passionate about supporting the veterinary profession and the animal health industry. After a decade of working as an equine veterinarian and an independent consultant, Silvia now works as the Zoetis Lead for Strategic Alliances and Business Development. She is also the Founder of Flexee Ltd., supporting veterinary teams improve clinics’ flexible working arrangements to aid retain and attract staff. Silvia’s tio-combination of expertise in fundamental science, veterinary medicine and business development is supported by her qualifications from London’s Royal Veterinary College, Liverpool University and Cornell University, and include BSc in Veterinary Science, MSc in Wild Animal Biology, BSc in Veterinary Medicine, and a postgraduate certificate in Veterinary Business Management.

Senior Vice President: Andrew Parker BVetMed DBR MRCVS
I qualified from the Royal Veterinary College. Five years after qualifying I put my plate up in Truro Cornwall. The practice grew to 10 Vets 40 staff and four standalone centres. I have gained a Diploma in Bovine Reproduction at Liverpool Vet School. I have been on the council of BVA chairing the Membership Services Group.
I joined the SPVS Council in 2013 eventually migrating to a board which I am a member of and I am very honoured to have been JVP for 2021/22 and President for 2022/23. I have a particular interest in EMS and graduate support.

Junior Vice President: Dr Ami Sawran BVSc CertAVP PGCertVPS PhD MRCVS
Ami graduated from Liverpool University in 2011 before undertaking a farm animal internship in production animal health and welfare at the Royal Veterinary College alongside Westpoint. Afterwards, she moved to London to complete her PhD on dairy cattle lameness and genomics, while locuming for the RSPCA and tutoring veterinary students. She has worked with several branches of Westpoint, and took on the role of Clinical Director at Chelmsford in January 2019, joined the VetPartners Production Animal Clinical Board in 2020 and was appointed to the VetPartners Farm Executive Board in 2021. A member of the farm marketing team, she is interim marketing coordinator for Westpoint.
Ami’s clinical interests include small ruminant health and welfare, and medicine of camelids. She holds a Certificate in Advanced Practice, and runs the Camelid Special Interest Group for VetPartners. Ami is particularly driven to improve wellbeing in the veterinary workforce, steering Westpoint Chelmsford to a win at the 2018 Veterinary Wellbeing Awards. It is her firm belief that a safe and fulfilled team is key to a smooth running practice and client service. Ami has continued to develop ideas on how to improve wellbeing across her group, also working within the BVLGBT+ committee and alongside BVEDS to foster inclusivity and promote diversity in farm practice.
Outside of work, Ami attempts to knit, snowboards, plays netball, and does agility with her dogs.

Chair of the Board: Pete Orpin  BVSc MRCVS
My key focus areas are improving cattle health, lecturing and business consultancy.
I worked for 35 years as veterinary surgeon at the Park Vet Group in Leicestershire, UK and developed particular skills in data management, preventive medicine and leadership.  My career started working at the practice in 1984 joining a small team of 4 vets and 6 support staff and helped build a winning team that took the business to a 115 people business with 7 business operations working over 4 geographic locations.
In 1999 I became President of the British Cattle Veterinary Association and developed a keen interest in Health Planning and in practice research with the publication of a wide range of articles, receiving the BCVA Tuckey award for best paper by a practitioner three times. My interest in health planning resulted in the development of Myhealthyherd, a web based health planning program for farmers and vets used by over 3000 dairy farms in the UK.
In 2016 I was awarded Dairy Vet of the Year at the Cream Awards
In the last 25 years more time has been devoted to helping other veterinary businesses thrive as a consultant within Anval Ltd.
In recent years I have been working on a National Johne’s Management Plan which will have engaged over 95% of UK farmers in robust control plans by the end of 2020.

Past President Nick Lloyd BVSc MRCVS
After qualifying at Bristol University, I joined a mixed practice in Devon in 2002, becoming a partner 2004. I moved away from practice in 2018 and I spent 2 years with IVC in their IT Dept. During my Presidential Year I am working as a locum and setting up a Veterinary IT Consultancy to support practices in their use of technology.
Clinically my interests still are dermatology and client communication.
During my limited time away from work and SPVS, my interests are sailing, dancing and hockey, and spending time with my growing family. Within SPVS my main role as been as chair of the Vet XML Consortium, working to improve the transfer of data between practice and industry.  President 2021-22.

Vicki Farbon MA Vet MB GPCert (SAM) PgC SADI MRCVS
I graduated from Cambridge in 2003 and have worked in the same independent practice in Bedford ever since. Initially it was a mixed practice and over the years has become a small animal and exotic practice. During my time I gained my GP cert in small animal medicine and I am currently and advanced practitioner in small animal diagnostic imaging.
I became a director of the business in 2013 and a shareholder in 2018. Alongside the clinical work I have a passion for business development, responsible leadership, promoting financial literacy within the practice and encouraging an excellent standard of EMS .
Out of work I have two young boys which keep me busy and I enjoy long distance running and strength training. I joined the SPVS board in 2021 in the hope I can make a difference and inspire and encourage more young women to join the organisation.

 

Helen Swift BVetMed, GPCert(FelP), MRCVS
Helen has been a small animal GP vet for 20 years in both independent and corporate practice, as well as Clinical Director of a multi site group. Her main interest is in feline medicine and she has a certificate in feline practice. Helen is passionate about making working in veterinary practice better for the whole team and also represents SPVS on the Greener Veterinary Practice Working Group.

Honorary Treasurer: Mark Moreton BVetMed MRCVS
Mark is a Small Animal GP Vet and a Hub Clinical Lead for CVS. He qualified from the RVC in 2002 and spent 16 years in General Practice, before joining CVS in 2018. He is passionate about Small Animal General Practice and surgery in particular and believes that it is possible for teams to recapture the joy that he has found throughout his General Practice career.
He has an interest in QI, particularly in relation to the development of high performing teams, and the role that systems and teams play in bringing us Joy in Work.

Rob Williams MVB MBA CMgr FCMI MRCVS
Rob qualified as a vet from University College Dublin in 2001 and worked as a small animal vet in the UK from graduation until July 2018. He undertook a wide variety of roles including a small animal internship at Glasgow Vet School, a surgery residency in a private referral practice and a clinical director role at Minster Vets in York.
Rob started working for VetPartners in 2016 initially developing education initiatives such as the Graduate and Managers Programmes. In 2018 he left clinical practice, joined the People Team at VetPartners and is currently Head of Talent looking after a wide portfolio of activity with particular focus on clinical and professional development in the UK & Europe.
Rob’s areas of interest are clinical education, clinical & business leadership, and organisational culture. He has MBA and is a Chartered Manager and Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.

Julie Eastham
I qualified as an RVN in 2004, after a career change later in my life and have worked in both SA & Mixed practices.  I have been at my current practice for over 17yrs, where I started as the Nursing Manager.  I have helped support the growth over these years seeing the practice grow from around 40+ employees to over 120+.  I continued to develop my own career and studied leadership & Management at evening classes at a local college where I achieved a Level 7 in Strategic Management and Leadership and I am now a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management, in 2017 I became the Practice Manager of the hospital with 5 branches and rehabilitation hub.
My passion is to help support staff to grow and develop their careers, ‘nothing is impossible’.   I believe in the importance of the ‘Team’.  Successful businesses have solid values and beliefs and work with their teams to ensure these are part of their everyday thinking.
Outside of work I have 7 working breed dogs to keep me busy and I volunteer at a local dog training club, I run the puppy and advance puppy training classes, I also teach gun dog training.

 

Rachel Simmons BVM&S MRCVS
Rachel is a veterinary surgeon, owner and director. She graduated from The Royal Dick in Edinburgh in 2014, starting out in mixed practice and then opting for small animal only after 5 years. She has worked all around the world carrying out veterinary charity work, rabies vaccinations programs and wildlife work, including South Africa, Malaysia and Sri Lanka. Opening Edhen Vets, a small animal practice, 2.5 years ago and delivering round the clock care in mid Cornwall, she has a lot of first hand experience in juggling how to keep clients, the team and herself happy!

SPVS Documents and AGM Minutes

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