AMTRA Announces Best in Class

AMTRA (Animal Medicines Training Regulatory Authority) has rewarded this year’s top SQPs (Suitably Qualified Persons) at a special ceremony in Birmingham. The three winners obtained the highest scores in their professional examinations, beating hundreds of other students from across the UK.

The highest placed R-SQP, covering livestock, companion animal and equine health, was Hannah Rose, a researcher in veterinary science at the University of Bristol, who also runs her own consultancy (Rose Research) advising farmers and horse owners on parasite control. Tessa Hill was named best E-SQP, specialising in equine health. Tessa works for family business, Caroline’s Pets of Hulme near Stoke-on-Trent and also took the relatively new avian module. Kathryn Dymott, Assistant Manager at the Pets At Home store in Wokingham was top prize winner in the C-SQP, or companion animal, category. Kathryn Dymott was also awarded the prestigious AHDA Cup for Overall Highest Achieving SQP from an AHDA member, sponsored by Elanco.

Tessa Hill left, Kathryn Dymott centre, and Hannah Rose on the right.

Tessa Hill left, Kathryn Dymott centre, and Hannah Rose on the right.

“I have a degree in zoology and a PhD in parasitology at the University of Bristol,” says Hannah Rose. “Now, as an R-SQP, I am qualified to put scientific knowledge into practice, assisting farmers implement guidelines from organisations such as SCOPS (Sustinable Control of Parasites in Sheep) and choosing the most appropriate treatment for their livestock. SQPs also understand how disease risk varies by season and with the weather. I studied hard for the SQP qualification so I’m delighted to have done so well!” Hannah Rose concludes.

Fellow prize winner, E-SQP Tessa Hill, was equally pleased with her exam results. “I qualified as a research chemist and later taught chemistry, so becoming an SQP has been a career change for me. Good communication skills and the ability to listen are key to doing a good job as an SQP,” believes Tessa Hill.

889 SQPs qualified in 2015, bringing the total number of SQPs working in country stores, veterinary practices, equine suppliers and pet shops across the UK to well over 6000. Similar to pharmacists in human medicine, SQPs do not work on a commission. They provide free advice on and can prescribe certain animal medicines, which include parasiticides.

“Through their advice, SQPs support industry-wide efforts to keep animal medicines effective into the future,,” says Stephen Dawson, Secretary General of AMTRA (Animal Medicines Training Regulatory Authority), the professional regulator for SQPs, who announced the awards. “Our top three students faced tough competition from all over the UK and I would like to congratulate them on their achievement,” Stephen Dawson concludes.

Prizes were presented during this year’s AHDA (Animal Health Distributors Association) conference in Birmingham by Prizes were announced by Stephen Dawson of AMTRA and presented by category sponsors. These were Russell Drummond from Zoetis for the R-SQP category, Jim Bowen from Battle Hayward & Bower for the E-SQP SQP category, Roddy Webster of Merial for the C-SQP category, and Gaynor Hillier of Elanco for the AHDA Cup.


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