The European College of Zoological Medicine (ECZM)is a European Veterinary Specialist College formed under the auspices of the European Board of Specialisation. The ECZM, evolved from the European College of Avian Medicine and Surgery (ECAMS), itself a veterinary specialist organization founded in 1993. ECAMS was an initiative of the European Committee of the Association of Avian Veterinarians, in response to a growing demand for better avian medical and surgical services for birds through specialization, and a need to harmonize certification in this area. ECAMS became recognised as a fully functional College in 2005. In 2007 an initiative was commenced to broaden the membership and areas of Speciality of ECAMS. The aim was to strengthen the College by increasing membership, whilst also providing the opportunity, for those working at a Specialist level, within allied zoological fields the opportunity to gain recognition, whilst at the same time facilitating greater recognition of the clinical area, by the profession, within veterinary academia, by governments and by the public. The result was that ECAMS changed to ECZM and the following new Specialist areas were provisionally recognised by the EBVS, with effect April 2009:
In April 2012 the EBVS provisionally recognised a new Specialty area:
The term Zoological Medicine was chosen based on a publication in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (2001;219:1532-1535) which recommends the following definition: “Zoological Medicine integrates veterinary medicine and the principles of ecology and conservation as applied in both natural and artificial environments.”
The Specialist areas run parallel and separate to each other. Diplomates of a Speciality will be required to gain admission into and be re-credentialled in their own discipline. It is recognised that some Diplomates may be genuinely active at a Diplomate level, in two Specialities. Such Diplomates will be permitted to be a Diplomate in two different Specialities, although they will only be permitted to be a Specialist in one.
The primary objectives of the College are to advance all relevant areas of zoological medicine in Europe and increase the competency of those who practice in these fields. Further aims during this presidential term are to raise the publics’ awareness of the ability of Zoological clinicians and of the benefits of involving members of this college in all national and international issues relating to health, welfare, biosecurity and professional training, as they relate to zoological collections and wildlife population health management.
This website (which will be updated within the next year) will give detailed information about the ECZM, including the Constitution, Bylaws, and Information Brochures of all the 5 specialties. The latter contains information about requirements for admission to the College, a profile of the specialties, and application and examination procedures. A Dutch translation of the Constitution will be included since this is necessary for legal registration of the ECZM in the Netherlands.
Nico J Schoemaker, DVM, PhD, Dip. ECZM (Small mammal & Avian)