On 31 October the Prime Minister announced that England would enter a national lockdown from Thursday 5 November to Wednesday 2 December. In light of this the Canine Health Schemes (CHS) team are adapting the way we work in order to follow these guidelines and also continue to process submissions. As of Thursday 5 November the CHS office will be closed and our team will be working remotely.
Impact on veterinary practices
England: As part of BVA’s guidance to veterinary practices during the 2nd national lockdown in England we are asking veterinary professionals to exercise clinical judgement when assessing and triaging animal health and welfare needs in the context of the lockdown.
What practices will be able to offer in terms of health testing will be dependent on individual practice factors such as staffing levels, building layout, as well as the vets’ professional and clinical judgement, and we would urge all owners to respect their vet’s decision.
Wales: During the firebreak lockdown (23 October to 8 November) veterinary practices must only undertake essential and urgent services and practices may need to delay x-rays and eye screenings. At the end of the firebreak lockdown, practices in Wales will be able to deliver veterinary services in line with Covid-safe requirements. However, during the England national lockdown CHS is only able to process online submissions to the Hip and Elbow Schemes (see below).
Scotland and NI: Veterinary practices are able to deliver veterinary services in line with Covid-safe requirements so x-rays and eye screening can go ahead. However, during the England national lockdown CHS is only able to process online submissions to the Hip and Elbow Schemes (see below).
In England, under the new guidance for the national lockdown group screening cannot take place. In Scotland, NI, and Wales (after the firebreak lockdown) group screenings can go ahead but Panellists must adhere to additional requirements to work in a Covid-safe manner.
Some CHS Eye Panellists may be able to offer eye screenings as long as government guidance on working safely, practice polices, and any local restrictions are adhered to.
We are asking all animal owners and breeders to respect their vets’ clinical and professional judgement and be patient during this time.
Hip and Elbow Dysplasia Schemes
Remote scoring of hip and elbow submissions
As our processing team is based in London, during the England national lockdown processing and scoring of hip and elbow submissions will be as follows:
- Hip and elbow submissions can be made by a veterinary surgeon via our online portal
- We can process and score online submissions, however, online scoring is slower than in-person scoring and this means we will have reduced capacity for scoring during the lockdown
- Unfortunately, this will further impact our turnaround times and we ask for your patience
- We are not able to score postal submissions during the national lockdown in England
- We are able to process postal submissions. They will be allocated to an in-person scoring session after the national lockdown. Unfortunately, this will impact our turnaround times. However, we are not able to estimate turnaround times until the office reopens
- We are asking veterinary practices to assist us by not sending postal submissions to us during lockdown if at all possible, please hold on to the submissions until our office is able to reopen
Due to the uncertainty caused by the national lockdown in England, we regret that we are not able to provide accurate turnaround times. The team is working hard to process and score submissions in order of date received. We regret that we’re unable to fast-track any submissions.
We are asking all animal owners and breeders to respect our team and their vets’ clinical and professional judgement and to be patient during this time.
We are unable to take payment until we have received the submission, so please wait for at least two weeks before calling to make payment.
To make a payment by card for postal submissions, please call the office on 020 7908 6380 (please note that this line is for payments only).
When calling please provide us with the following information:
- Date of radiography
- Kennel Club/microchip number
- name and address of the veterinary practice
For all non-payment related enquiries, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and if possible include the dog’s Kennel Club or microchip number, date of radiography, and the name and address of your vet practice. The team will get back to you as soon as possible.
Thank you for your patience and understanding in these exceptional circumstances.
For the latest guidance and advice on Covid-19, please visit the BVA Coronavirus information hub.