Six newly qualified veterinarians have recently joined the Northern Cape department of agriculture, environmental affairs, rural development, and land reform’s veterinary services. The move is said to be a significant development for rural animal healthcare where essential veterinary services are often neglected.
The initiative, a component of the government’s compulsory community service (CCS) programme, aims to provide a platform for recently graduated veterinarians.
Access to critical animal health information
According to Bongani Silingile, media liaison officer for the province’s agriculture department, the programme is an opportunity for graduated veterinarians to contribute their much-needed expertise to rural areas. This is to help ensure rural farmers have access to critical animal health information and are guided by veterinary professionals.
“The newly inducted veterinarians will be part of the programme for a year, during which they will actively engage in delivering essential veterinary services to remote regions,” said Silingile.
He added that the primary objective of the programme is to extend veterinary services across the entire province, with a particular emphasis on reaching far-flung rural areas. By implementing this initiative, the government seeks to bridge the gap in animal health services between urban and rural communities, Silingile said.
Under the supervision of qualified veterinary doctors, these dedicated professionals will play a vital role in enhancing the overall health and well-being of animals in rural communities, he added.
Improving animal welfare
Furthermore, the practical experience gained during the programme is expected to contribute significantly to their professional growth, enabling them to handle a wide range of challenges unique to rural settings.
“The newly qualified veterinarians will be stationed in various districts within the province, strategically placing them to serve diverse communities with distinct needs,” said Silingile.
As the group veterinarians embark on their journey, Silingile expressed that they are excited about the potential positive influence they will have on improving animal welfare in the province.
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