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Categories of Diplomate Status

The Founding Diplomates of the College shall be the members of the Interim Executive Committee and the de facto Diplomates (refer to Bylaws, Section 2.2). New members registered to the College are Practising Diplomates, currently working in the field of veterinary microbiology. Should a Diplomate no longer meet the requirements for re-certification, he/she will become a Non-Practising Diplomate (refer to Constitution Section 4.5, and Bylaws, Section 2.4) until such requirements are met. Once permanently retired, a Diplomate becomes a Retired Diplomate and is no longer active in any aspect of the College, pays no fees and cannot vote on College matters. The College may confer Honorary Member status to persons who have made exceptional contributions to veterinary microbiology and/or ECVM. Honorary Members shall have all the rights and privileges of Diplomates except the right to vote or hold office in the College (see Bylaws, Article 2.6). Only the Practising Diplomates (henceforth named Diplomate) may be registered as “Specialists”. The College may confer Associate Member status on scientists of international repute who have contributed significantly to veterinary microbiology. Associate Members are not entitled to advertise their title or use the designation Diplomate, but can participate in training residents, only in collaboration with a supervising College Diplomate.

Specialised Training to Become Eligible for Membership

The following sequence of training is required:

  • An obligatory minimum period of twelve months prior to starting the residency that should cover a range of clinical veterinary disciplines. This pre-residency training shall consist of an internship or equivalent approved by the ECVM Education Committee. This includes any clinical internship in a training centre. Programmes designed to allow rotation through disciplines, and across species, are encouraged. An equivalent period in general practice or other institution may be allowed, subject to approval by the Education Committee.
  • A “Residency” period of at least three years constituting a postgraduate training programme under the supervision of Diplomates of the ECVM, as defined by the ECVM Education Committee (Standard Residency Programme). An Alternate Residency Programme, at least as long as the aforementioned internship/standard residency programme can be approved for an individual candidate. The precise form of the programme is at the discretion of the Education Committee, and must be approved before the training begins.

Duties of Diplomates

The specialist in veterinary microbiology will work in an academic setting, research institution, diagnostic laboratory, or in any other setting where veterinary microbiology is performed. The main part of his/her time will be devoted to the speciality. A registered specialist should practise in an institution with adequate facilities for veterinary microbiology. When the specialist is practising in more than one location, there should be at least one location with adequate facilities.

Duties of Practising Diplomates of the College include:

  • To advance the subject of veterinary microbiology by high quality practice, by research and by contributing to training as outlined above;
  • to contribute to training programmes and courses as relevant to their practice;
  • to contribute actively to the affairs of the College (See Constitution, Article 4, Section 4). They must attend an ECVM Annual General Meeting (AGM) at least once every three years (See Bylaws, Article 1, Section 1), and must provide written apologies for absence to the Secretary of the College if not attending an AGM. Should a Diplomate not attend an AGM in three years without prior dispensation, the Executive Committee will assign non- practising status;
  • to assist in the examination process by marking work submitted for credentials and examination papers, and/or by assisting in oral/practical examinations as requested;
  • to contribute to the examination questions as detailed in the next section. Repeated unexcused failure to contribute actively to the affairs of the College (as described in the Constitution, Article 4, Section 4) may render a member subject to disciplinary action by the College;
  • if working in suitable establishments, to apply for these to be recognised as Approved Training Centres and for their programmes to be recognised as Standard Residency Programmes, as described in detail in Sections II and III, and Appendix II. Those working elsewhere may supervise or contribute to Alternate Residency Programmes, which must be approved in advance by the Education Committee, and may apply so that these establishments are recognised as Satellite Training Centres;
  • those who are registered as specialists should be actively working in the field of veterinary microbiology for at least sixty per cent of their working activity, based on a normal working week of forty hours; they are expected to maintain their knowledge at specialist level by attendance at, and contributions to, suitable meetings of specialists.

Maintenance of Diplomate Status

The EBVS demands that each College must evaluate the Practising Diplomate status of their Diplomates at five-year intervals (See EBVS Policies and Procedures; Policies II.H), starting five years after they first became a Diplomate. The ECVM have established a credit point system, approved by the EBVS.

  • Diplomates must complete a self-assessment form for re-certification (Appendix I), provide supporting documentation, and meet the minimum requirement of 100 credit points during a five-year period.
  • Diplomates will have to provide written evidence (activity log book or CV) to the Re- certification Committee that they have fulfilled the requirement of practising the speciality for more than sixty per cent of their time, based on a normal forty-hour working week.
  • All documents must be submitted in electronic format no later than April 1st of the year following the year in which the five-year period since obtaining the ECVM Diplomate status is completed.
  • The submitted activity logbook or curriculum vitae, and the self-assessment form plus supporting documentation, will be evaluated by the Re-certification Committee.
  • If a Diplomate does not meet the required number of points, they can be given one extra year in which to achieve at least the number of missing points. If they succeed, they will then be re- evaluated four years from the end of the extra year. If they do not succeed, or if any Diplomate does not submit re-certification documents, they will be made non-practising Diplomates, removed from the EBVS specialist register, and may only use the title of Diplomate (non-practising). A non-practising Diplomate seeking to revert to full Diplomate status needs to satisfy the Credentials Committee of the College.
  • The Re-certification Committee will make one of the following recommendations to the ECVM Executive Committee: a) acceptance of re-certification, valid for the next five years; b) non- acceptance and re-setting the Diplomate’s status to “non-practising”. The recommendations are considered and formally confirmed by the ECVM Executive Committee;
  • If re-certification documents are not submitted, submitted late or incomplete, the status of the Diplomate is automatically set to “non-practising”.

Diplomates may also be voted for removal from membership of the College if they have failed to pay their annual dues for two consecutive years (See Bylaws, Article 6, Section 3).

Re-instatement of Non-practising Diplomates

A formal application for re-instatement must be submitted to the Re-certification Committee consisting of the same documentation required for re-certification (refer to Paragraph 4, Maintenance of Diplomate Status). The Re-certification Committee will evaluate the application with respect to the provisions applicable for re-certification practising of Diplomates and communicate one of the following recommendations to the ECVM Executive Committee: a) acceptance and re-instatement as a Diplomate in good standing, valid for the next five years; b) non-acceptance and confirmation of the Diplomate’s status as “non-practising”. Each recommendation will be considered and formally confirmed by the ECVM Executive Committee.