Vet struck off for certifying horse while not registered

Vet struck off for certifying horse while not registered

A vet has been struck off after certifying a horse he examined while not on the RCVS register.

A disciplinary hearing heard that Andrew Michael Dobson had completed a pre-purchase examination (PPE) for a horse in June 2018 and signed a cover letter using his postnominals – a right reserved for registered vets.

Mr Dobson, who is based in Essex, had previously been signed off the register earlier that month for failing to pay his annual renewal fee.

Despite being restored on November 23 that same year, he had signed the PPE document while not on the RCVS register.

Mr Dobson was also charged with one count of failing to have professional indemnity insurance between 21 June 2018 and 1 August 2020 and also failed to provide adequate details of his cover when requested by the RCVS.

The third and final charge was that Mr Dobson had failed to respond to numerous requests from the RCVS, including failing to provide written comments on concerns relating to the equine PPE, and failing to provide written comments on the concern that he had carried out the PPE and used the postnominals MRCVS while not on the register.

‘Serious professional misconduct’

At a hearing held in his absence, after he failed to respond to the RCVS, a disciplinary committee decided the charges constituted “serious professional misconduct” and removed him from the register.

Committee chair Cerys Jones said: “The respondent demonstrated a pattern of behaviour in not responding, which was sustained and persistent. He asked for extensions of time, but did not make good on his assurances that he would provide information.

“Due to the length of time during which the respondent failed to comply with the requests, as well as the proliferation of issues in respect of which he did not comply, the committee was of the view that he demonstrated a wilful disregard of the role of the RCVS and the regulatory processes.

“This was particularly serious in light of the reliance which the RCVS places upon its members to cooperate with providing it with information relating to their professional practice which is relevant to the RCVS’ regulation of the profession.

“There was no harm caused to animals or the public, and the committee acknowledged that practice circumstances have been made more difficult in general by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“However, the respondent’s failures to comply were serious and undermined the functions of the RCVS. The committee was satisfied that the respondent’s failures fell so far below what was expected as to amount to serious professional misconduct.”

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