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Richard Brown

MA VetMB MSc MRCVS

Candidate 4 of 14

Proposers: Dr Steven Benton, Dr Barry Bousfield

Contact details

T 01466 794 343
M 07856 679 112
E [email protected]

Candidate biography

Richard Brown, 2024 RCVS Council election candidate In 1981 I graduated from Cambridge. For over 20 years I worked in rural practice in Scotland acting as locum, LVI, assistant, partner and finally principal. I was President of the local BVA for one year. I first met my wife, a lawyer, calving one of her father’s Charolais X cows. We have a son, daughter and two granddaughters. After obtaining an MSc from Edinburgh I worked for the governments of Belize, and Hong Kong, and latterly The City University of Hong Kong with key emphasis in establishing the first veterinary degree course in Hong Kong. My work also covered, investigative

laboratory, BSL3, meat inspection, research, regulatory, primary clinical, acting Senior Veterinary Officer, Import control, surgery, and lecturing. Research included creating a canine distemper test, bovine haptoglobins, immunocontraception in cattle, bovine vitamin A levels, 3D printing of the skeleton of an Omura’s whale, co discovering a rare new condition of cats ‘Robotic cats, and using practice accounts to analyse farmer behaviour. Non research publications include articles for Veterinary Times, Letters in the Veterinary Record, In Practice Everyday Ethics and co-authoring the Veterinary Bulletin of the Hong Kong government. My hobbies include photography, classical music and the outdoors.

Candidate manifesto

Forty years ago I had no idea of the fun, the highs, the lows, the sense of satisfaction and the occasional sadnesses that veterinary work would bring. Nor did I realise that at times it would extend me well beyond my limits requiring the support of family, friends and health professionals.

It is therefore with a sense of gratitude that I aim to serve the Council giving independent, neutral, objective and empathetic opinions and service.

In recent decades my view is that the profession has missed opportunities by:

  1. Prioritising specialities over general practice
  2. Prioritising financial performance over economic performance.
  3. Prioritising a veterinary calling over the calling to live a balanced life.

My assessment is that primary care should have the highest status within the profession. To satisfy diversity aims we should try to recruit adequately intelligent students from all backgrounds who possess non academic talents and competencies highly relevant to practice.

The number of lecturers at veterinary schools with 10 years or more experience in primary care should be increased dramatically.

We should consider bolstering Veterinary Ethics CPD. In my experience using ethics as a tool for clinical decision making will bring peace of mind.

I have always supported Vetlife, considering its work on mental health issues vital. Issues such as being willing without fear to meet and talk to health professionals, learning techniques such as mindfulness, relevant physical activities are in my view important. Achieving a balanced life style is a useful buffer against the significant stresses of practice.

Lastly, on a personal note, our current pet is a rescue Chocolate Labrador. Her distinctive behaviour reminds me on a daily basis not to take myself too seriously and to always maintain a sense of humour.