Veterinary Surgeons Board of Belize
The Veterinary Surgeons Board (VSB) is established in Part II of the Veterinary Surgeons Act (VSA) as the legal entity which serves to: register veterinarians, veterinary specialist and animal health assistants in Belize as well as removing them from said registers. Under the VSA all veterinarians are legally required to be registered in order to practice in Belize
Furthermore the Veterinary Surgeons Board is responsible to ensure the maintenance of acceptable standards, entertain complaints against registered veterinarians and conduct investigations for the purpose of discovering violations against the act.
The Board has the authority to examine and determine qualification and fitness of applicants, to interview applicants and to grant, refuse, suspend or revoke registration. Last but not least it shall be the function of the board to establish standards of professional conduct. Please note that in order for the VSB to investigate on a complaint this complaint needs to be made “in writing“.
In the Veterinary Surgeons Act (VSA) Part VI “Practice without registration is prohibited“. Veterinary surgeons are obliged to keep records and offenses and penalties are defined. Anybody practicing as a vet, as a vet specialist or animal health assistant needs to register (BZ$100, BZ$200, BZ$50 per year).
The applications and qualifications for registration of Animal Health Assistants as well as the functions of the animal health assistants are defined in Veterinary Surgeons Act Part V.
You can find the “Veterinary Surgeons Act“ (VSA) at www.belizelaw.org.
All practicing veterinarians in Belize have to pay an annual registration fee to the VSB of BZ$100 (for veterinary surgeon) or BZ$200 (for registering a specialization in addition to the general practitioner). The same applies to visiting veterinarians who work under temporary registration and supervision of a permanently registered local counter part. Visiting veterinarians have to engage a local veterinarian who will complete application for the visiting veterinarian. The application forms can be obtained from BAHA (BAHA email: firstname.lastname@example.org) and the application process for temporary application should be initiated at least 4 weeks prior to beginning of practice. The duration of application process in general depends in the next scheduled VSB Meeting. The VSB meets approximately every 3-6 months.
The Veterinary Surgeons Board consists of 5 members. Currently in 2013, 3 VSB members are also involved in the Veterinary Association of Belize (VAB), namely Drs. Gongora (also vice president for VAB) and Paquet-Durand (secretary for VAB) and Crawford (Treasurer VAB). Further members of the VSB are Dr Depaz (BAHA) and Dr Chimilio (elected by Veterinary Association).
- VSB Veterinary Surgeons Board
- VSA Veterinary Surgeons Act
- VAB Veterinary Association of Belize
- BAHA Belize Agricultural Health Authority