The 2020 edition of the Veterinary Council of Nigeria (VCN) annual professional continuing education programme held virtually on 24th and 25th November 2020. Declaring the conference open, the president of VCN, AIG Aisha Abubakar Baju informed participants that the covid 19 pandemic has necessitated the virtual continuing education programme instead of the traditional way of gathering in one location for the programme. The president called on all veterinarians and paraveterinarians to take advantage of the opportunity to update their professional knowledge, noting that the speakers for the programme were carefully selected from all areas of the veterinary profession to enable members benefit from their wealth of experience.
In a plenary session on day one, the senior special assistant to president Muhamadu Buhari on agriculture, Dr Andrew Kwasari spoke extensively on focusing the veterinary profession to benefit from current government policies. He called for a review and repositioning of the veterinary curriculum, the veterinary education structure, and the continuing education for specific competence. Delivering the first scientific presentation of the programme, Dr Chuka Ezema of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka spoke elaborately on probiotics as a biotechnological tool for productive performance in pigs. The swine medicine expert called on participants to embrace the use of probiotics in encouraging feed efficiency, weight gain, immune boosting and control of microbial organism.
Dr Abiola Oshin, a private veterinary practitioner in the United States of America, took participants through diagnosis, management and assessment of healing of fractures in small animal practice. He advocated the establishment of radiographic centers in all vet hospitals to aid in diagnosis and assessment of healing of fractures. Dr Faruku Bande of the Ministry of Animal Husbandry and Fisheries Development in Sokoto state led participants in discussion on the role of veterinarians and animal health workers in ending the scourge of sheep and goat plaque in Nigeria. Dr Bande took time to describe the various linages of PPR in Nigeria and advocated vaccination as an effective tool of ending the virus in the country.
Poultry production and management aspect of the programme was another thrilling session as Dr James Baba Wageti, a renowned poultry consultant in Nigeria, spoke on Mycotoxicosis in poultry production and management. Dr Wageti stated that the field and storage mycotoxins contaminate feed materials and impacts the organs and the entire system of birds when ingested. He enumerated the various control and prevention measures for mycotoxins.
The second day of the programme opened with a plenary session as Professor Oyewale Tomori related the strategies used by developing and developed countries in handling the covid 19 pandemic and its impact on the epidemiologic curves in relation to Nigeria. The professor of virology and former President of Nigerian Academy of Science stated the benefits of interprofessional collaboration during pandemics. The Aquaculture session of the programme was another interesting session as Dr Muyiwa Benedict expounded the roles and opportunities of Nigerian veterinarians in aquaculture value chain. Veterinarians in equine practice were not left out of the programme as Dr Lawan Adamu of the University of Maiduguri took participants through some recent approaches to management of equine laminitis. The general secretary of Association of Animal Health and Husbandry Technology, Mr Oludare Paul was also on ground to discuss the complex interplay of factors towards healthy animal welfare in the tropics.
Speaking at the end of the programme, the chairman, Continuing Education Committee of VCN, Dr Gani Enahoro stated that great lessons have been learnt from the first virtual continuing education programme and subsequent ones will be improved upon as arrangements are already in place to hold the programme more than once in a year. LIVESTONEWS.