Sustainable Business through Training for
Veterinary Para-Professionals (VPP)
Project partners: The European Commission for the Control of Foot-and-Mouth Disease (EuFMD), HealthforAnimals (HFA) and the World Veterinary Association (WVA).
To support the critical role played by Veterinary Paraprofessionals (VPPs) in delivering essential animal health services and improve their requisite technical and business skills, enabling business environments are needed for the provision of these services, supplies, and knowledge for smallholder farmers (SHFs).
In key geographies of Africa and Asia there is the need to support the establishment of efficient and profitable livestock value chain with benefits to all stakeholders at national levels.
This project aims to reinforce veterinary service provision systems through improved capacity of VPPs to deliver animal health services and addressing some of the historic challenges propagating VPP business instability and overreliance on public initiatives. The project will deliver and evaluate a model for sustainable VPPs in which competency acquisition is a gateway to recognition and increases access to new business opportunities in the “last mile” delivery of quality-assured animal health services.
This will be accomplished by a competency-based training system, in line with OIE Guidelines, allied to a digital engagement strategy supporting recognition and business development in the animal health care services marketplace.
The key outcomes of the project include:
Establishment of a national recognition system of trained individuals and their new competencies, and provision of the tools to maintain the recognition (certification) system for VPPs by national statutory or other national bodies;
Evaluation of the value of supportive national VPP business development plans, digital engagement and allied information systems in increasing community awareness, engagement and “brand recognition” by the private and public sectors of certified VPPs completing the training program;
In three project countries, enhanced business opportunities for trained VPPs and for employment and business opportunities to access distribution channels for veterinary vaccines and other veterinary medical products (VMP) products from quality producers.
Overall scope and approach
During the initial phase of the project, up to three countries will be selected after review of the feasibility of achieving the project aims. Based on the existing policy environment, approach to privatized VPP services and the competences required for recognition by veterinary statutory bodies (VSBs) for private and public services, a bespoke business and training model will be developed for each target country aiming to create a sustainable system for VPPs, VSBs/veterinary chambers, VMP distributors and SHFs. The selection process and model development will involve the OIE and other experts.
A demand-driven training curriculum is likely to differ between selected countries based on the policy settings and on what is agreed in consultation with key national stakeholders with appropriate gender analysis, and will focus on national level agreements on competency certification. Mandatory requirements for continued professional development to retain the recognition of competency by the VSB are central for the sustainability of the training system. The project model will support the development and implementation of a training management system (TMS) as a central transformative tool for VSBs or another body that has regulatory responsibility for the VPP system, enabling both certification and the capacity to manage the CPD system, and supporting differentiation of VPPs in the service marketplace.
A digital engagement strategy will be developed to immerse certified VPPs and SHF in the provision of high quality services to SHFs, and digital tools will be explored to communicate epidemic information and vaccine availability in supporting client demands for prevention services. This will support building a system for recognition of services offered by trained VPPs linked to national information sources (e.g. disease event reporting) to position them as trusted sources of guidance and services in disease prevention while enhancing their business opportunities.