Hard Work Results In Breakthrough Benchmark Ultrasound Guidelines
An imager at one of the North West’s leading veterinary hospitals has seen three years of hard work culminate in an influential guideline for ultrasound practice being published.
Angie Lloyd-Jones, who works for Linnaeus-owned Northwest Veterinary Specialists in Runcorn, is the driving force, alongside Julie Burnage, of the Small Animal Veterinary Guidelines for Professional Ultrasound Practice which has been published by The British Medical Ultrasound Society.
Importantly, the paper, which focuses on abdominal ultrasound, is endorsed by The European College of Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging and is the first of its kind to act as a benchmark for best practice principles to help keep operators and patients safe.
Angie, who entered the veterinary profession in 2016 and together with Julie is a partner at Aspire UCS, was shocked to discover that in veterinary ultrasound, unlike human medicine, there were no professional practice standards for her to work to and no competency-based standalone clinical ultrasound courses to attend.
Angie said: “I decided to start writing this document having transitioned from human into veterinary ultrasound. I was astounded that when I started there was nothing to help me.
“Guidelines are essential as ultrasound is so operator dependent. These operators need standards to keep both them and their patients safe.
“Just as importantly, I am especially passionate about empowering veterinary nurses to diversify their skillset into ultrasound and this document has been designed primarily to help them and other non-vet ultrasound operators to do so, within their well-defined scope of practice.”
Angie, who is keen to pass on her thanks to European Board of Veterinary Specialists member Dr Andrew Parry, who is also head of diagnostic imaging at fellow Linnaeus hospital Willows Veterinary Centre and Referral Centre in Solihull, for the support he has given her.
She is now working on three more sections for the document, focusing on cardiac, ECC and ultrasound-guided LRA (locoregional anaesthesia).
Angie added: “Our aim is these guidelines will help to keep our nurses, medical sonographers and, indeed, primary care vets safer when undertaking their ultrasound scans.”
NWVS is one of the UK’s leading specialist-led animal hospitals. It offers care in anaesthesia and analgesia, diagnostic imaging, internal medicine, neurology and neurosurgery, oncology, orthopaedics and soft tissue surgery.
To read the guidelines, visit Small_Animal_Veterinary_Guidelines_for_Professional_Ultrasound_Practice_ummxk60.pdf (bmus.org), while for more information on Northwest Veterinary Specialists, visit www.nwspecialists.com or search for Northwest Veterinary Specialists on social media.