Role of the designated veterinarian - FELASA-ECLAM-ESLAV WG
Whereas some areas of the world have well delineated the role of this veterinarian, there is a lack of harmonisation in Europe. Currently the role and extend of the veterinarian’s authority depends on the national Competent Authority and on the institution employing the veterinarian. This leads to a huge variability between establishments across the continent. Also, the independence of the veterinarian is sometimes compromised due to this lack of definition. This may give rise to conflicts of interest, for instance when the employer is on one side and the animal’s welfare on the other. There is thus a need for a harmonised guidance on the role of the Designated Veterinarian across Europe. Such recommendations, set forth by FELASA, ECLAM and ESLAV, could establish the basis for a common role description across all European countries. This will help the many veterinarians working in the laboratory animal field to relate to a simple document where the role is clearly stated.