USyd, UC Davis strengthen collaborative ties

Cameron Carter and Michael Spence AC signing the agreement.

Cameron Carter and Michael Spence AC signing the agreement.

A new agreement between the University of Sydney and the University of California, Davis will see academics benefit from new access to research collaborations and shared funding.

In February, leaders from both institutions joined a partnership signing event.

Vice-Chancellor for Research Professor Cameron Carter of UC Davis and Vice-Chancellor and Principal Michael Spence AC both highlighted the fact that UC Davis has research expertise which greatly complements areas of research strength at Sydney.

“We are very excited about this partnership agreement, particularly for the areas of agriculture and veterinary science,” Spence said. Continue reading USyd, UC Davis strengthen collaborative ties

Veterinarians’ attitude to infection control ‘complacent’

Navneet Dhand.

Infection control practices of Australian veterinarians are dangerously inadequate, according to a University of Sydney study published this month.

The study, published in Preventative Veterinary Medicine, found that 44.9 per cent of veterinarians had contracted a zoonotic disease through their work. Based on a survey of veterinarians attending the 2011 Australian Veterinary Association annual conference, . . . → Read More: Veterinarians’ attitude to infection control ‘complacent’

ATO announces $2k cap on self-education expenses

An Australian Government announcement that tax-deductions for work related self-education expenses will be limited to $2000 per person per year penalises well intentioned vets, according to the Australian Veterinary Association.

The cap, which comes into effect on 1 July 2014, is designed to yield savings to help fund the Government’s National Plan for School Improvement.

But AVA President Ben Gardiner said the $2000 figure did not make sense.

According to numbers provided by the AVA, in 2010 the average veterinarian claimed an estimate $2728 for self education, with some spending in excess of $5000 educating themselves and staff.

Gardiner said that the association, which represents approximately 7500 Australian veterinarians, was still seeking clarification about what educational expenses will fall under the proposed cap.

“The announcement was made in a media release without consultation,” he said. “It’s a poor way to introduce a new policy.” Continue reading ATO announces $2k cap on self-education expenses

ACVSc cats qualification for foreign vets

In 2012, UK and European vets will be able to sit Australian College of Veterinary Scientists Membership examinations in medicine of cats to demonstrate they have a high level of standing in the discipline.

The college will conduct the examination with International Society of Feline Medicine support. It has offered examinations of proficiency for more than 40 years and has offered species-specific examinations since its inception.

Its feline chapter conducts rigorous and searching examinations in feline medicine, at both Membership – MACVSc – and Fellowship – FCVSc – specialist levels.

The MACVSc examination is available to veterinarians with at least three and a half years of experience in clinical practice, and covers all facets of feline internal medicine, dermatology, ophthalmology, nutrition and behaviour. Although not a specialist examination, it is a qualification which distinguishes practitioners with particular interest in feline clinical sciences. Continue reading ACVSc cats qualification for foreign vets

Veterinary care in Papua New Guinea

If you’re wanting to volunteer your veterinary or vet nursing skills abroad, but don’t want to travel too far from Australia, then consider Papua New Guinea in the south west Pacific region.

Papua New Guinea is Australia’s closest international neighbour, yet many Australians may never have considered travelling there. In the Torres Strait between the two countries, the closest of Australia’s islands sits a mere four kilometres off the Papua New Guinea coastline and there are close traditional ties between the people living in the area. Australia has had significant involvement in the development of Papua New Guinea as we know it today, as Papua New Guinea used to be administered by Australia since the time of the first World War through until independence in 1975. The military history of war in Papua New Guinea is well known, including the famous battles along the Kokoda Track between Australian forces and the invading Japanese army during World War II.

Australia still contributes a significant amount of international aid to Papua New Guinea, and there are still strong ties between the two countries. Many Australian’s travel to Papua New Guinea in order to hike the Kokoda Track to learn about the historic military campaign which occurred there, along with experiencing the culture and landscape of the Owen Stanley Mountain range through which the Kokoda Track passes. However there is more to Papua New Guinea that just the Kokoda Track.

Papua New Guinea tourism uses the slogan, ‘the land of the unexpected’, and it definitely lives up to this description. There are over 800 language groups in Papua New Guinea, and it is a culturally and topographically diverse country home to an incredible array of plant and animal biodiversity. Being close to the equator, the climate in Papua New Guinea is tropical and hot with the wet season between December and March, however it can rain at any time. Dense tropical rainforest blankets a large proportion of the country. Divided into twenty provinces including various islands, each has its own cultural and natural attractions. English is spoken by many Papua New Guineans, however there is widespread use of pidgin or Tok Pisin which can be an amusing language to learn. Continue reading Veterinary care in Papua New Guinea