POLICIES & PROCEDURES, PART 1: GENERAL INFORMATION

European College of Zoological Medicine

POLICIES & PROCEDURES, PART 1:

GENERAL INFORMATION

                                      UPDATED OCTOBER 2018

Registered Address:

European College of Zoological Medicine

Yalelaan 108, NL-3584 CM Utrecht, The Netherlands.

(KvK-nummer 57119422)

e-mail: admin@eczm.eu

website: www.eczm.eu

PART 1: General information

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: Objectives of The College

Chapter 3: Officers & Committees                        

Chapter 4: Requirements for being a Specialist

Chapter 5: ECZM Residency Programmes

Chapter 6: Application process for ECZM examination

Chapter 7: ECZM examination

Chapter 8: Re-certification of Diplomates

Chapter 9: ECZM Fees

Appendix 1: ECZM Deadlines

Appendix 2: Re-certification points for ECZM Diplomates

Appendix 3: ECZM Exam Application form

Appendix 4: Curriculum Vitae for ECZM Examination Credentialing

Appendix 5: Knowledge, Skills and Competences of the Diplomates of the European College  of Zoological Medicine

Appendix 6: Quality Assurance

PART 2: Specialty information

The European College of Zoological Medicine (ECZM) recognizes five separate specialties under the ECZM umbrella; Avian, Herpetology, Small Mammal; Wildlife Population Health and Zoo Health Management. Please refer to the specific specialty Policies & Procedures, Part 2 for more information about your area of interest.

Chapter 1: Introduction

The European College of Zoological Medicine was formed in 2009 as an umbrella college covering at the time 4 sub-disciplines (avian, herpetology, wildlife population health and small mammals) representing the discipline of zoological medicine. These were joined by a fifth, zoo health management in 2012. The de facto period for small mammal, herpetology and wildlife population health sub-disciplines closed in April 2014 and zoo health management will close in April 2017. The avian specialty was originally approved by the EBVS as the European College of Avian Medicine and Surgery and as such is already approved by EBVS. The College structure is organized along EBVS guidelines as defined in the Constitution and Bylaws. Administration is carried out by an over-arching Executive Committee, Education and Residency Committee, Examination Committee and Credentialing Committee with proportionate representation from all five specialties.

The Policies and Procedures contain information about requirements for admission to the College, a profile of the distinct specialties within ECZM, and application and examination procedures.

Currently, acknowledged specialties of the college are:

  1. Avian Medicine and Surgery (Avian)

The original branch of The College and has been fully recognized by The European Board of Veterinary Specialization (EBVS) since 1999. Diplomates of the taxon-based ECZM (Avian) work predominantly in clinical avian medicine and surgery, including species kept as pets (e.g. psittacines, passerines, backyard poultry), in zoos and aviaries (e.g. penguins, flamingos, ratites, waterfowl), and for sport (e.g. racing pigeons, raptors). Commercial poultry is not included.

  • Herpetological Medicine and Surgery (Herpetology)

Given provisional recognition by the EBVS in 2009 and aiming for full recognition by 2019. Diplomates of the taxon-based ECZM (Herpetology) encompass the veterinary treatment, healthcare and preventative medicine of all reptilian and amphibian species (captive or wild) including Crocodilia (crocodiles, gavials, caimans, and alligators), Sphenodontia (tuataras), Squamata (lizards, snakes, and worm lizards), Testudines (turtles, terrapins and tortoises), Anura (frogs and toads), Caudata or Urodela (salamanders, newts), and Gymnophiona or Apoda (caecilians).

  • Small Mammal Medicine and Surgery (Small Mammal)

Given provisional recognition by the EBVS in 2009 and aiming for full recognition by 2019.   Diplomates of the taxon-based ECZM (Small Mammal) work predominantly in clinical small mammal medicine and surgery, including rabbits, rodents (e.g. mice, rats, guinea pigs, chinchillas), small carnivores (e.g. ferrets), and non-conventional small mammals.

  • Wildlife Population Health

Given provisional recognition by the EBVS in 2009 and aiming for full recognition by 2019.  Diplomates of the discipline-based ECZM (Wildlife Population Health) work predominantly with the diseases and health management of free-ranging wildlife (of any taxon) at the population level, including ecosystem health and conservation medicine.

  • Zoo Health Management

Given provisional recognition by the EBVS in 2012 and aiming for full recognition by 2022. Diplomates of the discipline-based ECZM (Zoo Health Management) work with wild animals (of any taxon) kept in a zoological institution. Along with comparative medicine, restraint and anaesthesia, major components of this specialty are herd and flock health management, preventative medicine, and zoo management (welfare, housing, nutrition, shipment, legislation, captive population management).

Chapter 2: Objectives of The College

Zoological Medicine is a discipline that integrates principles of ecology, conservation, and veterinary medicine and applies them to captive and wild non-domesticated animals within natural and artificial environments. ECZM is dedicated to excellence in advancing the health and well being of non-domesticated mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and invertebrates.

The primary objectives of the College shall be the promotion of study, research advancement and practise of zoological medicine in Europe and increasing the competency of those who practice in this field by:

i) Establishing guidelines for post-graduate education, training and experience as a prerequisite to become a specialist in one of the specialties of zoological medicine.

ii) Examining and authenticating veterinarians as specialists in zoological medicine to serve zoological patients, owners, the public, wildlife populations and zoological institutions, by providing expert care.

iii) Encouraging research and other contributions to knowledge in all aspects of zoological medicine and promoting communication and dissemination of this knowledge.

iv) The development, supervision and assessment of continuing education programmes in zoological medicine.

v)  Committing itself to the development of a culture, which recognises the importance of quality, and quality assurance, in its activities and to this end the College should develop and implement a strategy for the continuous enhancement of quality.

vi) Guaranteeing and maintaining the highest level of specialisation in zoological medicine according to European Qualifications Framework (EQF) level 8.

Further objectives of the College are:

i) Encouraging the public, zoological institutions and wildlife agencies to use veterinarians who are qualified to fill a unique and specific role in the delivery of modern comprehensive zoological medicine at the specialty level.

ii) Positioning the zoological medicine specialist as a common source for referrals in the veterinary community.

iii) Improving and promoting the structure of health care for animals, thereby improving its perception and understanding by owners, veterinarians and those interested in introducing animal health insurance and supplying zoological health products.

iv) Providing an incentive and reward for achieving postgraduate education and experience in Zoological Medicine at the specialist level. The title Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine shall be restricted to those persons working in the field who have reached the highest level of achievement in the respective specialty

v) Encouraging veterinary schools to establish in-depth instruction and high standards for training in zoological medicine and develop specific funding for areas of research. Also encouraging the establishment of specific funding for areas of research by state and other organizations.

vi) Promoting continued improvement of practice standards and knowledge in zoological medicine through continuing education and self-assessment.

vii) Supporting the preservation of zoological species by promulgating the concept of wise use of animal resources, protection and restoration of their habitats, and the breeding of endangered species in captivity.

viii) Encouraging responsible management, husbandry and breeding of zoological species, both in captivity and the wild.

ix) Preventing the occurrence of zoonotic and allergic diseases in individual animals and zoological collections that may affect humans.

Chapter 3: Officers & Committees

Officers and committees memberships are subject to frequent change. The most current information can be found on the college’s website at www.eczm.eu or by contacting the ECZM secretary (secretary@eczm.eu). The list below was last updated August 2018

Executive Committee 2018-2019

President: Dr Simon Girling

Vice President: Dr Debbie Myers

Secretary: Dr Stephen Smith

Treasurer: Dr Jolianne Rijks

Senior Vice-President: Dr Tom Tully

Avian Specialty Chair: Dr Petra Zsivanovits

Small Mammal Specialty Chair: Dr Elisabetta Mancinelli

Herpetology Specialty Chair: Dr Rachel Marschang

Wildlife Population Health Specialty Chair: Dr Carlos das Neves

Zoo Health Management Specialty Chair: Dr Hanspeter Steinmetz

Chairpersons of the committees

Examination Committee: Dr Ricardo DeMatos

Credentials Committee: Dr Mark Mitchell

Education and Residency Committee: Dr Michelle Barrows and Dr Peter Sandmeier

Scientific Committee: Dr Livia Benato

Nominations Committee: Dr Edmund Flach

Website Committee: Dr Romain Pizzi

The Diplomates will elect at least every three years, by secret ballot, the following officers to the Executive Committee:

                President

                Vice-President

                Treasurer

                Secretary

One additional member if needed (to maintain an uneven number of voting members within the executive committee)

These officers, as well as the immediate Past-President and the specialty Chairpersons, will compose the Executive Committee of the College. The President may not be re-elected to the same office within a six year period. Other officers may be elected to only one additional term of 3 years.

The Additional Diplomates, without a right to vote, may be co-opted as observers or advisors to the Executive Committee if the officers agree unanimously. One member of the Executive Committee will act as (senior) representative on the European Board of Veterinary Specialization and another Diplomate will act as the (junior) representative.

Chapter 4: Requirements for being a Specialist

The requirements for admission to the College as a Diplomate and being a Specialist are specified in the Bylaws of the College, in line with the Policies and Procedures determined by the EBVS. The requirements listed below are an abridged version of requirements found in Article 4 in the ECZM Constitution.

Specialists appointed by the College are veterinarians who:

  • Have demonstrated fitness and ability to practise the specialty by meeting the established training and experience requirements as assessed by the College.
  • Have also attained acceptable scores on comprehensive examinations administered by the College, unless exempted from this obligation and accepted as de facto Diplomates within the initial 5 years of approval of a specialty.
  • Demonstrate satisfactory moral and ethical standing in the profession.
  • Practise scientific, evidence-based veterinary medicine, which complies with animal welfare legislation.
  • Obtained their veterinary degree at least 48 months prior to certification.
  • Practise their specialty for at least 60% of their time, based on a 40 hour working week (i.e > 24 hours/week).
  • Are re-evaluated every 5 years using a standard re-certification process.

Each individual who has successfully passed the qualification procedure of the College shall be designated Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine. They shall be authorized to use the designation of Diplomate of the European College of Zoological Medicine (name of specialty) in the specialties which have been approved by ECZM and EBVS. The official abbreviation is DipECZM (Specialty).

If certain criteria are met and maintained, the individual is entitled to be awarded, by the EBVS, the title of. EBVS® European Veterinary Specialist in Avian Medicine and Surgery, or EBVS® European Veterinary Specialist in Herpetological Medicine and Surgery, or EBVS® European Veterinary Specialist in Small Mammal Medicine and Surgery, or EBVS® European Veterinary Specialist in Wildlife Population Health, or EBVS® European Veterinary Specialist in Zoo Health Management.

Each Diplomate is expected to actively participate in the scientific and business affairs of the College.

Further information on specific requirements for prospective candidates is also found in the individual specialty Policies and Procedures; Part 2 documents.

The requirements for de-facto applications (for specialties in their initial 5 year period) can be found in Bylaws section 2.3.

Chapter 5: ECZM Residency Programmes

In order to become eligible for specialty examination candidates must have devoted at least four years to formal training after graduation from veterinary school.

Training should be composed of at least one year rotating general internship or at least 2 years in general practice, followed by at least three year of specialty-focused training (residency).

A zoological medicine residency programme shall consist of supervised training, postgraduate education, and experience in the science and practice of the specialty within the field of zoological medicine and its supporting disciplines. The training is under the supervision of at least one ECZM diplomate who participates actively in that programme, as defined further below.

The Education and Residency Committee must approve all residency programmes in advance.

5.1 Objectives of ECZM residency programmes

The general objectives of the training programme are:

  • to promote aptitude and proficiency in zoological medicine, as well as its theoretical background.
  • to instruct the resident in the science and practice of zoological medicine and its supporting disciplines of the appropriate specialty.
  • to provide the resident with the opportunity to pursue career goals in teaching, research and/or specialty practice.

5.2. Prerequisites for specialty training

5.2.1. A first period must be a minimum of a one year rotating multi-disciplinary internship (in any species, as defined by EBVS), or a minimum of two years in general practice.

5.2.2 According to the EBVS internship definition: An internship shall be a minimum of a one-year term of flexible rotating clinical training in veterinary medicine beyond the professional degree. It provides practical experience in applying knowledge gained during formal professional education, and offers an opportunity for recent graduates to obtain additional training in the clinical and basic sciences. An internship is composed of a broad range of clinical assignments within one of the major divisions of veterinary medicine. This year of comprehensive broad postgraduate training and experience prepares a veterinarian for high-quality service in practice or for a decision on an area of specialization. It is important that an internship be truly a rotation, involving a wide range of clinical activities. It should be conceived as a training programme for the intern rather than a service benefit for the clinic.

5.2.3. The suitability of prerequisite experience or qualifications of a potential residency candidate is initially evaluated by the proposed supervisor. This does not need to be pre-approved, however, subsequent formal approval by the Education and Residency Committee of the internship or period in general practice is required prior to starting a residency training programme to ensure compliance with EBVS minimum standards. Details of this process can be found in section 5.8.

5.3 Residency programmes

A zoological medicine residency programme is an advanced training programme allowing a qualified veterinarian (the resident) to acquire in-depth knowledge of zoological medicine as it pertains to the relevant specialty, under the supervision and guidance of one or more ECZM Diplomates. The goal of a residency programme is to train individuals to become Diplomates who have developed self-confidence, self-criticism and sense of responsibility that are essential for the practise of the specialty.

5.3.1 Standard residency programmes

The residency programme shall comprise an at least three years of full time postgraduate training under the supervision of a Diplomate of the appropriate specialty of ECZM and located at an approved training centre. Residents must spend at least 60% of their time practising the speciality (based on a normal working week of 40 hours) under direct supervision.

5.3.2. Alternate programmes

The alternate programme route is intended for veterinarians whose circumstances do not permit enrolment in a standard residency programme. An alternate programme is individually tailored to the specified resident ONLY, such that he/she achieves the required standards by the time of completion. The alternative programme must be approved by the Education and Residency Committee before the Resident embarks on it, and the total length of this programme cannot be shorter than a standard residency programme. The total time of an alternate programme must not exceed six years.

A candidate for an alternate programme must also have previously completed a minimum of a one year rotating multi-disciplinary internship (in any species, as defined by EBVS), or a minimum of two years in general practice.

A resident on an alternate training programme must spend the equivalent of at least 60% of 3 years working in the relevant specialty of zoological medicine under direct supervision of a Diplomate of the ECZM in that specialty. This equates to a minimum of 84 weeks (or equivalent) of direct supervision during the alternate programme period.

5.3.3. All applications for approval of the prerequisites, residency programme or alternate programme are to be sent to the ECZM secretary electronically and will be forwarded to the chairman of the Education and Residency Committee. Prior to starting a residency training programme, the supervisor should ensure they have received approval of all elements of the training programme, including the prerequisites, from the Education and Residency Committee. 

5.3.4. Residents may use the title “ECZM Resident” or “Resident in Zoological Medicine (Specialty)”, or similar, during the official training period. Once the training period is finished, the resident cannot use terms such as “exam ready”, “residency completed” or similar. There is no approved title that a former resident can use in the time leading up to their examination following completion of the residency training period.

5.4. Training Programme criteria

5.4.1. Residency programmes strive to result in the qualification of Specialists who have demonstrated the proper intellectual qualities, professional and technical skills. Moreover, residency programmes aim to develop a culture that recognizes the importance of continuous professional development. Specialty training in specific veterinary medicine disciplines may be required to be included as external rotations.

5.4.2. Prospective residents will be required to have undertaken broad training and experience in their chosen discipline. Post-graduate degree studies may be included in the programme; however, at least 60% of the resident’s time (80% for zoo health management) must be allocated to practise of the specialty. Continuing education programmes as the sole method of training will not meet the requirements of certification

5.4.3 Training completed during the internship (or other prior training time) may not be counted towards or replace training required during the residency programme.

5.4.4. There are general requirements for facilities, services, and equipment that are necessary to become an approved training centre. Training programme criteria are described in more detail in specialty-specific Policies and Procedures (Part 2).

5.4.5. In addition, for residents to qualify to sit the examination, they must meet the minimum requirements for publications as set by EBVS, and those set by the individual specialty (refer to Specialty Policies and Procedures). The minimum EBVS requirements are:

  • One original, peer-reviewed scientific research paper within the candidate’s specialty. The candidate must be the principal author and the publication must be mentioned in the Science Citation Index or the ECZM specialty reading list.
  • (i) One original, peer-reviewed case report or scientific research paper within the candidate’s specialty. The candidate can be the principal author or co-author and the publication must be mentioned in the Science Citation Index or the ECZM specialty reading list.

5.5. Supervision by ECZM diplomates in residency programmes:

5.5.1.     Each programme must be supervised by at least one practising Diplomate of the appropriate specialty, physically present and working at the training centre. If there are several Diplomates present, one must be designated as the responsible supervisor and receives the re-certification points for resident supervision.

5.5.2.     The supervisor is the primary responsible contact person for application, registration and approval processes and must maintain regular correspondence with the respective committees of the ECZM.

5.5.3.     One Diplomate may be responsible for up to two residents concurrently.

5.5.4.     The selection of a suitable candidate with adequate prerequisite clinical and academic training for the residency programme is at the supervisor´s discretion. The minimum requirements of one year rotating internship or equivalent training (as detailed in section 5.2 above) must be fulfilled and reported to the Education and Residency Committee according to the process described in 6.7. 

5.5.5.     Daily direct supervision is required, although it does permit the intermittent absence of the supervising Diplomate or the resident for standard reasons (vacations, meetings, days off and sickness). Supervision must include consultations, case discussions, and case management with actual cases (where appropriate to the specialty). Primary responsibility for case work may be increasingly delegated to the resident during advancing course of training and depending on the clinical skills and confidence of the resident.

5.5.6.     Supervisors are responsible for evaluating and approving the residency monitoring forms (see section 5.6 below) prior to submission to the Education and Residency Committee. Comments and concerns by the reviewers must be discussed with the resident and addressed. A Supervisor Progress report must be submitted to the Education and Residency Committee along with the Case and Activity Log and Resident Progress Report, documenting and commenting the performance of the resident.

5.5.7.     Residents must meet with the responsible supervisor at least twice yearly for evaluation of performance and progress. When the resident has multiple supervisors, a meeting among the supervisors should precede the meeting with the resident.

5.6. Monitoring Process during residency

5.6.1. All residents are required to submit residency monitoring documentation at the following pre-determined intervals:

  • Clinical residents (Avian, Herpetology, Small Mammal, Zoo Health Management) are required to submit documentation at 3 months and then 6 months, and every 6 months thereafter through the residency (3-3-6-6-6-6-6 frequency).
  • Non-clinical residents (Wildlife Population Health) are required to submit documentation at 6 months, then 12 months, and every 12 months thereafter through the residency (6-6-12-12 frequency).

5.6.2. The documentation to be submitted to the Education and Residency Committee by the resident, after verification and approval by the Resident Supervisor, includes the following:

  • Case and Activity Log: An Excel document including various logs, such as Medical and Surgical Case Log, Procedure Log, Residency Activity Log, as determined by the specialty. To be filled out and updated continuously throughout the entire residency period.
  • Resident Progress Report: A form recording the residency progress statistically. This serves as evaluation form of the Case and Activity Log for the reviewer of the Education and Residency Committee.
  • Supervisor Progress Report: Written by the supervisor, documenting and commenting on the performance and progress of the resident. This may be discussed with the resident prior to submission if the supervisor wishes.
  • Other Specialty Reports: Some specialties require additional reports which can be found in Policies and Procedures: Part 2.

If required by the Education and Residency Committee, the resident must also be able to produce detailed medical records of individual cases. These may be exerts from the clinic data record system.

In addition, the resident is required to complete an annual Residency Evaluation Form. This is submitted to the Chair of the Education and Residency Committee, and gives the resident an opportunity to evaluate the residency programme they are taking part in. The information is strictly confidential and if problems are raised, the Chair will contact the resident privately to discuss things further.

5.6.3. Policy on late submission of reports

It is the duty of residents and supervisors to submit the reports to the Chair of Education and Residency Committee at the required intervals (section 5.6.1). Reminders will not be sent. In case of delays and failure to receive the required materials without previous dispensation, the Education and Residency Committee may take the following steps of action:

i) If the residency progress monitoring documentation is not received within 2 months of the required date, an email will be sent to the Resident (and cc. to the Supervisor). This will be a first warning that submissions are overdue.

ii) If the required documentation is still not received within one further month, a second and final warning will be sent by e-mail to the Resident (and cc. to the Supervisor).

iii) If no action is taken after this period, the Education and Residency Committee reserve the right to take punitive action. This may include, but is not limited to, declaring the overdue (and therefore non-monitored) period of the residency programme void and thereby requiring an extension of the current training period. Where extending the time period of a residency programme is not possible, the resident may be required to carry out additional assignments as set by the ECZM Education and Residency Committee. This may have to be at the resident’s own time and expense.

iv) In the event of repeated and/or severe offences regarding this policy, the ECZM Education and Residency Committee reserve the right to take further punitive action, which may include termination of the residency training programme.

v) Supervisors will not receive re-certification points for residency time that has been declared void by the Education and Residency Committee.

5.7. Residency approval process

5.7.1. Diplomates wishing to offer a residency programme must submit a comprehensive and detailed programme proposal to the Education and Residency Committee for evaluation and approval. The content of the proposal package must include but is not limited to:

  • Description of the training site. This would include details about available facilities, equipment, case load, staff, and cooperation with other specialists. The Education and Residency Committee have developed a self-inspection form for clinical residencies to help with this part of the proposal. This can be found in the Specialty Policies and Procedures and can be used as a guide to the minimum requirements. No self-inspection form is required for wildlife population health programmes. Photographic documentation and floor plans of facilities may be included to aid the proposal.
  • Full curriculum vitae of the Supervisor.
  • Proposed Programme structure. This should include a description of the duties and responsibilities of the resident, study time allocation, research possibilities, opportunities for external rotations and specialty training. See the Specialty Policies and Procedures for further information.

5.7.2. The proposal will be assessed by the Education and Residency Committee and more information may be requested. In addition, a physical inspection of the training site may be required. In that case, applicants for new residency training facilities are expected to pay reasonable expenses to accommodate the ECZM inspection party. These fees will be refunded by ECZM upon successful acceptance as an approved residency facility.

5.7.3. Approval of the training programme is valid for 5 years, after which re-evaluation is performed by the Education and Residency Committee. Re-evaluation may also be required after major changes (e.g. change of supervisor, major changes in facilities, equipment or programme structure). Changes in the content facilities or structure of the approved programme must immediately be reported to the Education and Residency  Committee.

5.7.4. In an approved standard residency programme, one supervisor may supervise up to two residents at the same time.

5.8. Resident candidate registration process

Once a training facility and training programme is approved, it is the responsibility of the residency Supervisor to select a candidate who satisfies the criteria required to embark on a residency programme as detailed in the Bylaws and Policies and Procedures.

Once a candidate is selected, then the potential resident must be registered with the Education and Residency Committee by submission (and acceptance) of the documentation specified below. The Education and Residency Committee must be notified of and formally approve a new residency candidate before the start of the training period. 

5.8.1. Registration of a standard residency

Registrations are submitted by the supervisor and should include:

  • A recommendation letter from the supervisor, including the name of the proposed supervisor, proposed resident and the location, duration, timing and brief details of the training programme.
  • An academic curriculum vitae of the chosen candidate, including their graduate degree.
  • Specific indication of the section of the candidate’s curriculum vitae that fulfills the prerequisites of specialty training as defined in section 5.2. should be included in the above letter.

Please note: The prerequisite qualifications of a potentially suitable residency candidate are to be evaluated primarily by the supervisor, however, formal approval by the Education and Residency committee is needed to verify and confirm compliance with the minimum EBVS standards.

5.8.2. Registration of an alternate programme

Alternate programmes are tailored to the individual candidate´s personal circumstances and prerequisite experience. Therefore the approval of the programme and registration of the new candidate are parallel processes.

Applications for alternate programme approval and subsequent candidate registrations are submitted by the potential resident and should include:

  • An application letter from the candidate explaining their reasons for choosing an alternate route programme along with reasons for not participating in a standard programme. This must also confirm understanding the requirements for an alternate programme as detailed in section 5.3.2 of the Policies and Procedures.
  • In particular, the candidate must acknowledge the prerequisite requirements as defined in section 5.2 and the supervision requirements 5.3.2. indicating that the candidate will be spending the equivalent of at least 60% of 3 years working in the relevant specialty of zoological medicine under direct supervision of a Diplomate of the ECZM in that specialty. This equates to a minimum of 84 weeks (or equivalent) of direct supervision which must be completed over a period of greater than 3 years and less than six years.
  • An academic curriculum vitae of the candidate, including their graduate degree.
  • Detailed programme structure of the alternate programme, including the name of the proposed supervisor (s) and training centre(s). Where multiple Diplomates are involved in supervision, ONE Diplomate must be designated as the responsible supervisor of the alternate programme.
  • A letter of support from the supervisor of the alternate programme and confirmation of their participation. This letter must also include specific indication of the section of the candidate’s curriculum vitae that fulfills the prerequisites of specialty training as defined in section 5.2.

5.8.3. Once the registrations and training centres (and programme approval for alternate programmes) have been assessed by the Education and Residency Committee a decision will be communicated to the supervisor (in the case of standard residencies) or resident and supervisor (in the case of alternate programmes). If the registration is approved, the programme may begin as planned, ensuring the Education and Residency Committee are notified of the start date. If the application is not approved, areas for change will be suggested and the programme will be reassessed.

Chapter 6: Application process for ECZM examination

6.1. All potential applicants must notify the ECZM Examination Committee Chair of their intent to apply for the qualifying examination before October 1st of the year prior of their anticipated examination. Following this notification the Chair will send the all pertinent information required for the application process and the examination to the applicant.

6.2. Applicants must submit all in-press and published manuscripts and written evidence of other fulfilled requirements (see 6.4 below) to complete their examination credentials to the ECZM Secretary before November 1st of the year prior to their anticipated examination. This will be sent to the Credentials Committee for evaluation.

6.2.1. Whilst all other requirements of the application process must be completed prior to the November 1st deadline, it is not mandatory that the residency training programme is completed by this time. It is recommended that the training programme should be completed at least 2 months before the anticipated examination date. However, completing the training programme nearer to the examination date is permitted, providing all matters are in order and the Credential Committee and the Education and Residency Committee are aware of the shorter time frame. Completion of a training programme less that 2 months before the scheduled examination is entirely at the applicants risk. If there proves to be inadequate time for the relevant committees to fully evaluate the credentials then the applicant will not be permitted to sit the examination. Supervisors and applicants are encouraged to allow appropriate time examination preparation between the end of the training programme and the examination.

6.3. The approximate dates of examination will be posted on the website at least four months in advance, and the specific date will be provided to applicants nearer the time.

6.4. In order to credential for the examination, all candidates must submit the following documents electronically to the ECZM Secretary:

  • Covering letter requesting application for examination credentialing in your chosen specialty. Also include a summary of the documents you will be including in your application.
  • Curriculum Vitae – see appendix 4 for guidance.
  • Reference letter(s) from the programme supervisor(s) of each institution involved in the training programme. All letters must be from persons familiar with the candidate’s training and be sent (electronically) directly to the Secretary. Requests by the applicant for reference letters should be made early so as to assure that these letters are received by the Secretary on or before the application deadline (November 1st of the year prior to the examination). It is the applicant’s responsibility to see that all letters are sent to the Secretary on time. The Credentials Committee is responsible for absolute discretion and confidentiality regarding the reference letter(s). After approval of the candidate to sit the examination the reference letter(s) will be deleted. Reference letters must contain the following:
    • Verification of the specialty zoological medicine training programme and level of supervision.
    • An opinion regarding the applicant’s proficiency, judgment, and competence as a specialty zoological practitioner and readiness to sit the examination.
    • The commitment of the applicant to the constitutional objectives of the ECZM.
    • The moral and ethical standing of the applicant within the veterinary profession.
  • Documentation logs. The completed and verified logs required by the specialty must accompany the application. If the training programme is not yet finished then the logs must be compete up to the time of application.
  • Case Reports (where required): The specified number (See Policies & Procedures; Part 2 for specific requirements) of case reports of cases personally handled with a maximum of 1500 words each, which give an assessment of the analytical approach of the candidate.
  • Publications. Original peer reviewed papers from within the candidate’s specialty, as required for the specialty (see Policies & Procedures; Part 2). These must be published or fully accepted for publication as evidenced by a letter from the editor.
  • Any relevant previous correspondence relating to the training programme and application.
  • Evidence of payment of Credentialing for Examination fee. The application will not be evaluated or processed without payment of the fee indicated in Chapter 9. This fee is non-refundable. If any portion of the application has to be re-submitted the payment of further fees will be at the discretion of the Credential Committee. Contact the ECZM Treasurer (treasurer@eczm.eu) for details of how to make payment.

6.4.1. The responsibility for accuracy and availability of all required credentials rests with the applicant.

6.4.2. The Education and Residency Committee must also verify the successful completion of a standard residency or alternative training programme. They will inform the Credential Committee of this when the training programme is completed. If completion of the training programme is still pending, then provisional approval of the examination credentials may be provided, until such time as the training programme is finished (see 6.2.1. above).

6.4.2. Following review of the submitted credentials by the Credentials Committee, applicants (and the Examination Committee Chair) will be notified of the outcome by the ECZM Secretary on or before December 1st of the year prior to the examination.

6.4.3. Successful applicants will be invited to submit an application to sit the examination (see 6.5 below).

6.4.4. Unsuccessful applicants will receive an explanation of the deficiencies in credentials. Minor revisions may be accepted by the Credentials Committee in order to accept the application, and the applicant will be advised of this, as well as the revised deadlines expected. If credentials are rejected and require major additions or revisions, then the applicant will be invited to re-submit the following year.  A subsequent re-application must include re-submission of credentials and a new application form, an updated Curriculum Vitae, relating correspondences, and an additional application fee. The documentation must be presented in the manner previously described, and in accordance with the same deadlines.

6.5. Applications to sit the examination must be made electronically to the ECZM Secretary by January 1st of the year of the proposed examination by submission of the examination application form (in appendix 3) together with proof of payment of the Examination Fee (Chapter 9). This would usually be done directly after acceptance of examination credentials but applicants do have up to eight years to pass the examination following completion of their training programme.

6.6. The Chair of the Examination Committee will notify successful applicants of the location, dates and procedure for the examination by February 1st of the year of the examination.

6.7. Late or incomplete applications at any stage of this process will not be considered.

6.8. All correspondence regarding the application procedure and notification should be addressed to the Secretary. All submitted application materials become the sole property of the ECZM and will not be returned to the applicant.

6.9. New ECZM Diplomates who have just passed the examination are expected to submit (and have accepted) 10 multiple-choice questions and two practical questions with suitably referenced answers, for use in subsequent ECZM examinations.

Chapter 7: ECZM Examination

The examination will test all aspects of the relevant specialty of zoological medicine. More specific details of each specialty examination, including number of questions and time allowed, can be found in the Policies and Procedures,  Part 2, as there are differences between the specialty examinations.

7.1. The examination may be composed of two sections:

7.1.1. Multiple-Choice Questions. The examination consists of a pre-determined number multiple-choice questions, with each question being worth 1 point. The pass mark is set at 65%.  Each multiple-choice question consists of two parts: the stem and the responses. The stem is the introductory statement or question. The responses are suggested answers that complete the statement or answer the question asked in the stem. For each question, there is one correct response, and 4 distractors.

7.1.2. Practical/Written Questions. The practical portion of this examination is composed of short answer questions that relate to an appropriate clinical or management situation. There will be a pre-determined number of “stations” each containing a short essay question or a practical question (possibly in multiple parts). These stations may make use of physical material, radiographs, data for analysis, situational material, photos, videos and anything else that can be used to test knowledge of the specialty. Incorporated into the timing of examination will be a review period of 20 minutes at the end, granted before the question papers are passed to the examiner(s). The pass mark is set at 65%.

7.2. Extra time may be allowed in cases of dyslexia, medical reasons or other circumstances. A recent medical report or certificate must be provided with the examination application. An appropriate amount of extra time will be decided upon by the Examination Committee prior to the examination and the candidate will be informed.

7.3. The majority of examination questions will be referenced from the relevant specialty ECZM Reading List. However, occasional questions may be referenced from additional relevant resources where the subject matter is important and relevant to the specialty.

7.4. All questions in the examinations must come from the ECZM Examination Database, composed of questions written and submitted by Diplomates.

7.5. The reading list and the examination are only given in English. The Examination Committee may permit the use of dictionaries, with prior approval.

7.6. All parts of the examination must be held at all times under the direct supervision and physical presence of members of the Examination Committee or trained invigilators. In line with modern best practice, an invigilator must not be otherwise occupied during the examination and must not leave the room during the examination without being replaced by another invigilator.

7.7. Examination results will normally be provided within 7 days of the examination. A list of candidates who successfully pass will be sent to the President by the Chairperson of the Examination Committee. Examinees will be given an examination feedback form that must be completed and returned to the Examination Committee within one month of the examination.

7.8. After successfully passing the ECZM examination, each new Diplomate is expected to submit 10 multiple-choice questions and two practical/short answer questions to the Examination Committee. These should be referenced from the specialty reading list.

7.9. Candidates must pass the examination within eight years of completion of the residency programme. They may sit each different part of the examination on a maximum of four (4) occasions. Any candidate who fails either part of the examination may, at the discretion of the Examination committee, be permitted to re-sit just that part on a subsequent year.

7.10. Failure to pass the entire examination within the limits defined in 7.9. above means that the candidate must repeat the examination credentialing process and will be required to complete additional periods of training, experience or written work as decided by the Credentials Committee. The second approval by the Credentials Committee will be reviewed annually, the incoming Examination Committee chairperson and the incoming Credentials Committee chairperson having the option of recommending reapplication on a yearly basis if the candidate continues to fail the examination.

7.11. The repeat examination credentials must include as a minimum:

  • A written outline of the applicant’s self-evaluation and his/her attempts to improve on the areas of knowledge noted to be deficient.
  • A completed application form (appendix xx).
  • An updated Curriculum Vitae with an addendum reflecting training and experiences directed towards correcting any deficits in knowledge as noted by the report from the Examination Committee.
  • At least one letter of reference specifically addressing the efforts taken by the applicant to prepare for subsequent attempts to pass the examination.
  • At least one additional major publication in the field of the relevant specialty in zoological medicine, with the applicant being the first author. The publications must have been published or at least fully accepted for publication (proof must be provided) by an internationally refereed scientific journal (i.e. mentioned in the Science Citation Index or one of the journals mentioned in the reading list). The publication must be less than five years old at the date of the current application deadline.
  • All relating correspondence including a list of all dates of previous applications and relevant correspondence.

7.12. Payment of the examination fee is required on or before the application deadline of January 1st of the year of the anticipated examination. The fee is non-refundable. Repeated examination attempts (even if just one part) will require an additional payment of the full examination, on each occasion. Payment can be made in the same way as for examination credentialing, but contact the ECZM Treasurer (treasurer@eczm.eu) if you need any further assistance with making payment.

Chapter 8: Re-certification of Diplomates

Each Diplomate is required to provide validation every 5 years that they sufficiently qualify to continue their certified Diplomate status. The College has established a standard procedure by which these requirements are re-evaluated via a standardized points system and other specified criteria. This procedure meets the requirements as established by EBVS.

More detailed information on the requirements for re-certification can be found in Article 4.9 of the Constitution and in Bylaws section 2.10. The allocation of re-certification points is detailed in Appendix 2.

In summary, successful re-certification of Diplomates every 5 years requires that:

  • The Diplomate receives at least 100 re-certification points based on the allocation detailed in appendix 2.
  • The specialty is practiced at a level of no less than 60% of their time, based on a normal working week of forty hours.
  • There has not been an interruption of practice for more than two continuous years (or equivalent) within the 5 year period (without previous dispensation by the Executive Committee).
  • The Diplomate has not been absent for more than 2 consecutive Annual General Meetings (without previous dispensation by the Executive Committee).
  • A minimum of five multiple choice questions and two practical questions are accepted by the Examination Committee over the 5 year period.
  • The Diplomate contributes to at lease ONE publication within the 5 year period (as listed in appendix 2)

In addition, Diplomates are required to ask two senior colleagues or authorities to send to the College a letter of reference certifying that the Diplomate in question has been active in practising his/her specialty for the last 5 years at the specialist level.

Diplomates who fail to achieve the above requirements will be moved to Non-Certified Diplomate status.

Chapter 9: ECZM Fees

Certified Diplomate annual fee                                                                                                  € 175

Non-certified Diplomate annual fee                                                                                        € 115

Retired Diplomate annual fee                                                                                                    No Fee

Honorary Member                                                                                                                          No Fee

Application to start Residency                                                                                                    No Fee

Credentialing for Examination                                                                                                    € 150

Credentialing for de facto application                                                                                     € 150

Examination Fee                                                                                                                              € 450

Credentialing for return from non-certified to certified status                                     € 200

Late re-certification fee (where approved)                                                                          €100

Annual membership late payment surcharge                                                                      €10

Visitation and Inspection of potential Residency Training Facility:                               Inspection expenses *

Annual dues (membership fees) are payable by January 1st every year and provide membership for that coming year.It is the responsibility of members to pay the appropriate fee by the deadline.  (Constitution 4.12).

An initial request for fees will be sent 2 months before deadline on or around November 1st and then a second request will be sent 1 month before deadline on or around December 1st. Members who have not paid their fees by the deadline will be in arrears. An “overdue” reminder will be sent 2 weeks after deadline on or around January 15th requesting immediate payment along with a late payment fee. A “final notice reminder” will be sent on or around June 1st requesting immediate payment along with a late payment fee. No further reminders will be sent. Any Diplomate who has not paid by July 1st (6 months after deadline) may be voted for removal from the College by the Executive Committee at the next scheduled meeting (ECZM Bylaws section 6.7).

All other fees such as examination or credentialing fees must be paid at the time of application. No action will be taken until payment is received.

*Applicants for new Residency training facilities are expected to pay reasonable expenses to accommodate the ECZM inspection party. These fees can be refunded by ECZM upon successful acceptance as an approved residency facility.

Appendix 1: ECZM DEADLINES

October 1st Potential examination candidates must inform Examination Committee Chair of their intent to apply for the qualifying examination
November 1st Credentialing applications must be submitted if the candidate is to be considered for examination in the following calendar year.
December 1st Candidate will be informed if they have passed the credentialing process in order to potentially sit the ECZM examination in the following calendar year onwards.
December 31st Deadline for Diplomates to submit re-certification material.
January 1st Applications to sit the examination must be made by this time of the year they intend to sit the examination.
January 1st ECZM membership fee are payable by this date for membership of the upcoming year.
January 15th Overdue membership payment reminders will be issued (including the late payment fee).
February 1st Successfully credentialed candidates will receive information regarding location and time of ECZM examination from ECZM Examination Committee Chair along with the specific order of the various parts of the examination.
March-May ECZM Annual General Meeting takes place at this time of year – usually around another major zoological medicine scientific conference, or with ECZM’s own scientific symposium.
March-May ECZM examination will take place to coincide with ECZM Annual General Meeting.  Individual results will be provided to each candidate within 7 days of the examination. 
June 1st FINAL reminder for membership payment. If payment is not received by July 1st, then the member can be voted for removal from the College by the Executive Committee.

Appendix 2: Re-certification points for ECZM Diplomates

For successful re-certification, the minimum number of points required over the 5 year period is 100. The information must be clearly ordered and itemised before being submitted  to the chair of the Credential Committee, along with any documentary evidence.

A. PUBLICATIONS (maximum 75 points)

At least ONE publication from this list is mandatory to achieve re-certification (effective for those re-certifying in 2019 and onwards).


– Original peer-reviewed scientific article (main author)                                                                                 20 points
– Original peer-reviewed scientific article (co-author)                                                                      10 points
– Original peer-reviewed case report (main author)                                                                         6 points

– Original peer-reviewed case report (co-author)                                                                              3 points

– Review articles                                                                                                                                               6 points

– Textbook chapter as main author (minimum 1000 words)                                                           6 points

– Textbook chapter as co-author (minimum 1000 words)                                                               2 points

– Editor of a textbook (minimum 100 pages)                                                                                        10 points

Publications must be relevant to the specialty. Peer-reviewed articles must appear on the Science Citation Index from the Institute for Scientific Information or in the specialty reading list. Main author is normally the first author, but in some situations can be the last author if it can be documented that this is the principal investigator. Co-author can be any other contributing author. Review articles and textbook chapters do not have to be peer-reviewed.

B. PRESENTATIONS (maximum 50 points)

– International scientific meetings, including ECZM meetings (per presentation)                                 8 points
– Poster presentation at international meeting as 1st author                                                        6 points
– National scientific/educational meetings (per presentation)                                                     3 points

– Continuing education presentations (per hour of presentation)                                              1 points

Presentations must be relevant to the specialty.

C. ECZM BUSINESS MEETINGS

– ECZM AGM attendance when held simultaneously with CPD conference                            2 points
– ECZM AGM attendance when held simultaneously with ECZM Symposium                        4 points

D. CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT MEETINGS (maximum 50 points)


– ECZM Symposium (per half day)                                                             6 points (max 12 points per meeting)

– International congress or meetings (per half day)                          4 points (max 16 points per meeting)
– National  congress or meetings (per half day)                                   2 points (max 8 points per meeting)

– Non-specialised congresses or meetings (per half day)                                1 point (max 4 points per meeting)

Only sessions attended that are relevant to the specialty qualify to earn re-certification points

E. ECZM COMMITTEE MEMBERSHIP

– Executive committee member (per complete year)                                                                      12 points
– Examination supervisor (per year present as an examiner)                                                        8 points
– Chair of College committees1 (per complete year)                                                                         8 points

– Member of College committees2 (per complete year)                                                                 4 points

– Member of other College committees3 (per complete year)                                                     2 points

1Examination Committee, Credential Committee, Education and Residency Committee, and Website Committee, but excluding specialty chairs who already receive points for Executive Committee membership.

2Examination Committee, Credential Committee, Education and Residency Committee, and Website Committee.

3Scientific committee, nominations committee and auditors.

To claim the re-certification points above, the members must be active on the committees and this will be verified by the committee chair.

F. RESIDENCIES


– Standard residency supervisor (per resident, per year completed)                                        12 points

– Alternate programme supervisor (per completed programme)                                               20 points


G. EXAMINATION QUESTIONS (maximum 55 points)

At least FIVE MCQs and TWO practical questions are mandatory to achieve re-certification. Questions must have been accepted by the examination committee to qualify for re-certification points.

– MCQ (per accepted question)                                                                                                                                 1 point
– Practical Question (per accepted question)                                                                                       3 points

H. OTHER ACTIVITIES

– Member of international editorial board                                                                                            8 points

– Member of national editorial board                                                                                                      4 points

The member must hold a permanent position on the editorial board of a zoological medicine journal or the subject matter reviewed but be zoological medicine. Points awarded only once per editorial board per re-certification period.

I. TWO LETTERS OF REFERENCE

Two referees are required to support the application for re-certification. One referee should be an EBVS – recognised Diplomate from the same country and of the same specialty. If there are no professionally qualified persons in the applicant’s country or specialty, specialists in other disciplines or a senior colleague (e.g. Head of Department, Dean) may act as a referee. Only one academic colleague at the same institute may provide a reference. Please use the template below for the reference letters and they must be submitted with the application for re-certification.

Template ECZM Letter of Reference for Re-certification

Name of applicant:

Title of specialty:

1. In what capacity do you know the applicant?

It is not allowed that the referee is a relative or partner (business or social) of the applicant. One referee should be an EBVS – recognised Diplomate from the same country and of the same specialty. If there are no professionally qualified persons in the applicant’s country or specialty, specialists in other disciplines or a senior colleague (e.g. Head of Department, Dean) may act as a referee. Only one academic colleague at the same institute may provide a reference.

2. How long have you known the applicant’s work?

A referee must normally have known the applicant for the five-year period prior to application/re-application that the applicant is offering as experience in their specialty. A professional and not a personal reference is required.

I know the applicant

personally                          

by reputation

3. Tick the criteria by which, in your opinion, the applicant is maintaining their EBVS Specialist status. The EBVS expects that all Specialists have:

  • Been practising (through practice, teaching and research) their specialty for at least 60% of their time (minimum 24 hours per week), for the last 5 years;                                                    
  • Demonstrated satisfactory moral and ethical standing in the profession;
  • Practised scientific, evidence-based veterinary medicine, which complies with animal welfare legislation.
  • Promoted continuous improvement in the quality and standard of specialist practice
  • Communicated effectively to the public and to professional colleagues.

I signify below my whole-hearted support for this application for.

Any other comments:

Signature:

Name (in capital letters):

Date:

Appendix 3: ECZM Exam Application Form

Application date  
Name of applicant  
Specialty exam being applied for  
Date examination credentials approved  
Residency training location  
Internship start and end dates  
Residency start and end dates  
Year of intended examination  
Date exam fee paid  
Signature of applicant  
Signature of training supervisor  
Name of training supervisor  
Any other comments or information  

Appendix 4: Curriculum Vitae for ECZM Examination Credentialing

The applicant’s usual C.V. can be used to credential for the examination, providing it clearly contains the following information:

FULL NAME

ADDRESS

DATE OF BIRTH

EDUCATION

COLLEGES

DATES

DEGREES

PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES

MEMBERSHIP OF SCIENTIFIC ORGANIZATIONS

HONOURS

PROFESSIONAL

PUBLIC SERVICE

OFFICE HELD

PROFESSIONAL

PUBLIC SERVICE

PROFESSIONAL PRESENTATIONS

PUBLISHED PEER REVIEWED SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS (IN THE SPECIALTY)

Appendix 5: Knowledge, Skills and Competences of the Diplomates of the European College of Zoological Medicine

Training of Veterinary specialists: EQF level 8 (doctoral degree)

The minimum 4-year Training Programme allows graduate veterinarians, who have completed a minimum of one year internship programme or its equivalent, as defined in section 5.2 of the Policies and Procedure, Part 1: General information, and a minimum of a 3-year College-approved Residency Training Programme to acquire in-depth knowledge of the scientific field of zoological medicine and its supporting disciplines under the supervision and guidance of a Diplomate of the College of the same speciality. 

This distinguishes the Specialist level from the first clinical degree (Masters) level, which is EQF level 7, and the “middle tier” or the “Advanced Practitioner”. 

Overall specialists will have the intellectual qualities, professional (including transferable) and technical skills necessary for successful employment in professional environments requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and largely autonomous initiative in professional or equivalent environments.

By his/her expertise, the specialist should have developed the self-confidence, self-criticism and sense of responsibility that are essential for the practice of the specialty.

A. In particular in relation to knowledge, specialists will be veterinarians who have demonstrated:

  1. a systematic acquisition and understanding of a substantial body of facts, principles, theories and practices, which is at the forefront of their area of professional practice;
  1. a high moral and ethical standard with regard to his/her contribution to the protection of animal health and welfare, human health and the environment;
  2. willingness to maintain up to date knowledge through congresses and literature;
  3. the ability to be acquainted with the structure, objectives, approaches and problems of the veterinary profession and specifically with regard to zoological medicine;
  4. the ability to keep abreast of new developments in the specialty and become familiar with new methods, before applying these in practice;
  5. understanding of the limitations of the specialty of zoological medicine;
  6. understanding of the possibilities that other specialties may have to offer;
  7. familiarity with the potential of multidisciplinary cooperation;
  8. awareness of current E.U. and national regulations with regard to all aspects of zoological medicine;
  9. the ability to conceptualise, design and implement research projects relevant to their own professional practice for the generation of new knowledge, applications or understanding at the forefront of the specialty;
  10. a detailed understanding of applicable techniques for research and advanced professional enquiry to support all the above.

B. In particular in relation to skills, specialists will be veterinarians who have demonstrated ability to:

  1. perform at a high level of professional expertise in the speciality area of zoological medicine, including the ability to make informed judgements on non-routine and complex issues in specialist fields, often in the absence of complete data;
  2. use a full range of investigative procedures and techniques to define and refine problems in a way that renders them amenable to the application of evidence-based approaches to their solution;
  3. use patient safety knowledge to reduce harm and complications;
  4. communicate their ideas and conclusions clearly and effectively to specialist and non-specialist clients and audiences;
  5. act professionally in the provision of customised and optimal solutions to problems with regard to animals, clients, colleagues, public health and the environment;
  6. apply high level knowledge and skills at the forefront of the specialist area of zoological medicine to their own professional work;
  7. approach problems in an analytic, scientific way and attempt to find solutions;
  8. assign priorities to identified problems;
  9. use modern standards of skills and equipment;
  10. find required information quickly;
  11. organise all aspects of his/her work efficiently and effectively.

C. In particular in relation to competences, specialists will be veterinarians who have demonstrated ability to:

  1. perform at a high level of competency through teaching, research and practice in their specialty;
  2. carry out their responsibilities safely and ethically;
  3. create, evaluate, interpret and apply, through clinical studies or original research, new knowledge at the forefront of their professional area, of a quality to satisfy peer review, and merit publication and presentation to professional audiences;
  4. promote, within academic and professional contexts, technological, social or cultural advancement in a knowledge based society;
  5. promote aptitude and proficiency in the field of zoological medicine;
  6. continue to undertake research and/or clinical studies at an advanced level, contributing substantially to the development of new techniques, ideas or approaches in the speciality;
  7. develop their professional practice and produce a contribution to professional knowledge;
  8. maintain both professional expertise and research through advanced scholarship;
  9. develop applied research relevant to their professional area and other scientific activities in order to contribute to the quality of the speciality of zoological medicine.

Appendix 6: Quality Assurance

The mission of the College is to contribute significantly to the maintenance and enhancement of the quality of European Veterinary Specialists in Zoological Medicine across all European countries at the highest possible level so as to ensure that improved optimal veterinary medical services will be provided to the public.

1. Towards achieving this goal, ECZM imposes special training beyond the professional veterinary degree to enhance the ability of candidates to meet certification requirements and to update the competence of specialists, and has:

2. established a policy and associated formal mechanisms for the approval, periodic review and monitoring for the assurance
of the standards and quality of the programmes and awards is offering;

3. established a system of collection, analysis and use of up to date, impartial and objective, relevant information for the effective management of the training programmes and other activities of the College, to be regularly submitted to the EBVS;

4. established a clear policy and the procedures, including a re-evaluation form, for re-certification of the Diplomates for membership of the Colleges every five years;

5. conflict of interest avoidance mechanisms in place on all levels, e.g. applications for enrolment as a resident, approval of residency programmes, approval of credentials, examinations, appeals procedures and so on;

6. established a policy and the procedures for complaints or appeals, and disciplinary actions against Diplomates or Residents/Candidates.

7. Moreover, working under the umbrella of the European Board of Veterinary Specialisation, ECZM also contributes to its goals by ensuring that:

8. the College commits itself to the development of a culture, which recognises the importance of quality, and quality assurance, in its activities, and to achieve this, it develops and implement a strategy for the continuous enhancement of quality;

9. the interests of society and veterinary profession in the quality and standards of specialist education and training are safeguarded;

10. any specified experience requirement is clearly defined, relevant to the objectives of the specialty, and amenable to evaluation;

11. a strategic plan must be developed every ten years;

12. the strategy, constitution/bylaws, policy and procedures, and all major documents of the College are publicly available;

13. residents are assessed using published criteria, regulations and procedures which are applied consistently;

14. staff involved with
the training of residents are qualified and competent to do so;

15. the resources available for the support of resident learning are adequate and appropriate for each programme offered;

Accountability procedures

ECZM has in place its own procedures which include the following:


i. a published policy for the assurance of the quality of the agency itself, made available on its website

ii. documentation which demonstrates that:

  1. the processes and results reflect its mission and goals of quality assurance;
  2. enforces, a no-conflict-of-interest mechanism in its own activities or in the activities of its Diplomates and Residents/Candidates;
  3. has reliable mechanisms that ensure the quality of any of its activities and material produced;

In accordance with its objective to function as an organisation developing, and enhancing standards and guidelines on quality assurance in the area of zoological medicine and to maintain and develop co-operation with other appropriate European stakeholder organisations, ECZM is committed to a continuing cooperation with partner organisations in Europe and beyond. These mainly include the other EBVS-recognised Colleges, the respective Associations in Europe and specialist Colleges in other parts of the world (e.g. North America, and Australasia).