RCVS CPD Hours: 45 or 15- Does it really matter?

The news the RCVS have decided to change the mandatory number of hours for RVNs and Veterinary Surgeons has had a mixed reception.

Upon qualifying and entering the register all Registered Veterinary Nurses in the UK have to comply with CPD requirements. Currently this is 45 hours over a rolling 3-year period. Meaning that you could in theory do more or less on each individual year. From reading the statement from the RCVS it seems this has been used as an excuse by individuals not to comply, stating they will make it up next year.

RCVS CPD Hours: Still the same?

From a nurse point of view, I am a bit baffled by reaction this news has had. To me it really doesn’t make a huge amount of difference. Perhaps it’s because I enjoy CPD and don’t really struggle to make up the hours.

One potential problem I can anticipate is the ability for new mums to comply. Previously I had naively assumed that whilst you were on maternity the CPD requirement was frozen. This is not the case though, as I found out when I called and spoke to the RCVS on behalf of some employees. In order for your CPD requirements to be frozen you have to temporarily remove yourself from the register. I guess this is because you could still do a KIT day or pick up a shift whilst on maternity. Therefore, using your RVN status and thus agreeing to comply with the CPD requirements.

In their statement though the RCVS have said they will remain flexible with those that are open and honest about the CPD hours. In previously discussions with them a clear CPD plan of action is required. Just another thing to keep on mind when planning a family or trying to get as much done before they arrive!

RCVS CPD Hours: Planning is key

Aside from the new mums I see no reason why anyone should have an issue with the new hours. We do CPD for a reason, it keeps us up to date and ensures we are practicing best practice. Most of us are lucky enough to have ia budget as a ‘perk’ but there is a lot of good quality free CPD too. I have put together a list of paid for scheduled CPD but will get a list of the free resources together too. To start with though head over the RCVS Knowledge website where there’s lots of free webinars and mini-courses.


On a side note make sure you are logging your CPD on your PDPR. It’s super easy (once you remember your password) and gives you a clear idea of what you need to do. Keep in mind mentoring, seeing practice and also delivering CPD counts towards your hours so log everything!

Happy learning and embrace it, after all we all want to be the best nurses we can be. This means keeping up with current thoughts and learning where we can.



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