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Dr Samantha Webster

Dr Samantha Webster, RCVS Council election candidate 2021BVetMed MRCVS

Candidate 12 of 14

Proposers: Dr Sarah Warren, Dr Adele Williams

Contact details

27 Vine Street, Malton, Norton, North Yorkshire YO17 9JD

M 07761 559 901

E samantha.fraser89@gmail.com

Candidate biography

I graduated from The Royal Veterinary College in 2012.

I started my veterinary career in traditional, rural, mixed practice in North Yorkshire where I spent three years.

In 2015 I made the move from the UK to Australia and transitioned into 100% small animal work in a variety of locum roles whilst travelling the country.

In 2017, I diversified into animal transport, providing certification for and ensuring the health and welfare of all of the pets transported by the largest small animal transport company in the country.

Arriving back to the UK in 2019, I began a telemedicine role as a consulting veterinarian for Joii Pet Care (Vet-AI). I have since worked my way into a dual role for the company – not only managing the clinical team but also working as part of the Telemedicine Excellence Development team – a department dedicated to gathering and analysing evidence-based medicine in the telemedicine sector so that we can make solid, scientific, informed decisions about an important emerging discipline.

My personal interests include hiking, baking and surfing.

Candidate manifesto

  • Mental health and wellbeing: the mental health of the veterinary profession is known to be under pressure, and has been exacerbated by the pandemic. Unrealistic expectations from owners, personal-pressure to save every pet and catch every diagnosis, the increasing pressure to provide our services for lower costs alongside more pet owners struggling financially. Add to this the precarious work of balancing animal welfare with human health, and the mental health toll on the profession is immense. The best way we can support the profession is with clear guidance, that supports the decisions that veterinarians are being asked to make.
  • Working parents & work-life balance: the change in Critical Worker status, combined with the RCVS requirements that vets provide 24/7 emergency care to all pets under their care, has put working parents – who account for a large proportion of our workforce – in a difficult position. Another instance where clear guidance from our governing body would allow us all to have clarity and provide a unified message to owners too.
  • “Under Care” – having worked abroad I have first-hand experience of how the profession overseas has embraced the clients right to choose and change their care provider. Whilst continuity of care can be beneficial to pets, this is something that needs to be decided by the owner and not by the profession. Clients should be expected to register with a practice under clearly stated terms as to what level of care will be provided, but should also have wider choices regarding how they choose to access veterinary care.
  • Innovation: digital services are on the rise in the veterinary sector. Significant client demand exists and open discussion among the profession to develop evidence-based grounds for decision making needs to be a priority, which means speeding up the “Under care” review.

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