A BORDERS veterinary practice is the first in Scotland and just the second in the UK to achieve a prestigious accreditation to help pets suffering with a debilitating condition. 

Greenside Veterinary Practice, which has sites in St Boswells and Jedburgh, has gained practice accreditation from the Veterinary Osteoarthritis Alliance (VOA).

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disorder that can lead to permanent deterioration of the cartilage.

Greenside’s regenerative therapies and rehabilitation centre is dedicated to providing pioneering treatments including stem cell therapy.

Andy Armitage, clinical director at Greenside and member of the VOA advisory panel, said: “Gaining the VOA accreditation, and to be just the second veterinary practice in the UK, is of real significance for our patients, clients and Greenside itself.

“Working closely with the VOA, we will strive to improve the welfare of animals with this debilitating condition.

“We would also encourage other practices to work towards achieving the VOA accreditation, so we can collectively gain a better understanding around managing osteoarthritis.”

The practice had to meet strict criteria to become an accredited practice including holding regular osteoarthritis clinics, conducting internal training and having at least two members achieve the Blue Paw Award, gained by undertaking and passing the VOA’s online training.

It needed to provide proof of using diverse skills in the physical rehabilitation and management of osteoarthritis.

Linnaeus-owned Greenside also had to show evidence of appropriate investigational capabilities, along with client interaction and involvement, and the assessment of the outcome of cases.

The VOA itself said that the accreditation is to guide practices towards best practice in veterinary osteoarthritis management.

Christopher Tems, primary care medical director at Linnaeus, said: “It’s a fantastic achievement by Greenside to be one of the first veterinary practices in the UK to achieve VOA accreditation.

“The team at Greenside clearly recognises the importance of providing its patients with the very best care around osteoarthritis and we’re confident that many more Linnaeus practices will shortly follow suit and also gain this important recognition.”