This is the highest standard achievable
What is the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons’ Practice Standards Scheme?
The Practice Standards Scheme (PSS) was set up by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) in 2005 to promote and maintain high
standards in veterinary care. The Scheme does this by setting standards and inspecting the practices.
All RCVS-accredited practices have to meet Core standards, including hygiene, health and safety,
clinical governance and the facilities provided. On top of this ‘Core’ accreditation, General Practices
can gain species- or discipline-specific accreditations, for example, small animals, farm animals,
equine patients or emergency service clinics – or any combination of these. Veterinary Hospitals can
seek accreditation as small animal or equine hospitals.
To maintain the accreditation, practices are inspected by RCVS Inspectors every four years and there
are random spot checks.
What does it mean for clients and their animals?
It can be hard for owners to know what happens behind the scenes at the vets. The Scheme makes
more information about practices available to help animal owners choose a practice. In particular, the
Scheme can reassure people about the night-time cover, hygiene and facilities available at an
What about practices that aren’t accredited?
In accredited practices an RCVS inspector has been behind the scenes and is satisfied that the practice meets standards agreed by all
the key veterinary organisations which gives clients an assurance of standards. Clients of practices that have not been accredited do not have this reassurance. Half of UK practice premises are not accredited.
Not all vets in Northwich are accredited.