The Veterinary Profession
The veterinary science aims to protect the health and welfare of livestock and pet animals and to ensure the safety of food products of animal origin in order to protect public health. In this context, veterinary medicine is an absolutely human-centered science. The professional and scientific approach and the outline of the role of veterinarians in the coming years is a complex undertaking, as there are significant changes in the practice of veterinary science.
As far as veterinary medicine of livestock animals is concerned, the role of the veterinarian has now become a consultant, providing scientific knowledge on integrated animal health management and production and reproductive traits. Professional guidelines are shaped by the need to increase and maintain livestock yields, requiring a multilevel approach and a broad range of cognitive subjects, converging towards animal species and farming. Modern consumer habits, environmentally friendly animal husbandry systems, alternative animal husbandry methods, animal welfare and breeding conditions favoring the normal expression of animal needs have created a new field of veterinary occupational employment.
The hygiene and safety of livestock products are also important occupational fields. The handling and slaughter of animals, the quality assurance systems at all stages of processing and the optimization of the organoleptic and physico-chemical parameters of the products are important and crucial scientific veterinary support items. Today, within the European direction for "One Medicine - One Health", food safety and the prevention of zoonoses are major scientific disciplines in veterinary science.
In the public sector, veterinarians are responsible for the inspection of livestock, the diagnosis and treatment of contagious diseases, the implementation of programs for the prevention and eradication of various diseases, the control of the circulation of veterinary medicinal and immunological products and the health control of foodstuffs of animal origin and their production and processing points.
As a liberal profession, the veterinary medicine of the productive animals is carried out in the veterinary offices, which are defined as the professional shelter, where the veterinarian provides services related to the treatment of diseases of productive animals and the application of the rules of veterinary clinical management of their health and welfare. Examinations and interventions in productive animals are carried out exclusively on livestock farms. Veterinary offices for productive livestock operate after a permit for establishment and operation by the Veterinary Directorate of the relevant Prefectural Authority. In order to ensure public health, the administration of medicinal products to productive animals is governed by specific legislation (Law 3698/2008). With the veterinary management of livestock farms, veterinarians aim at: (a) protecting health and welfare and increasing livestock productivity; (b) addressing zoonoses; and (c) protecting the natural environment.
As far as veterinary medicine is concerned, the expanding subject, the rapid development of medical technology and the demands of society have led the veterinary profession to develop in line with the medical profession. Thus, scientific specialization, continuous training and professional excellence are important elements for the further development of this professional sector. The veterinary medicine of pet animals is practiced in pet shops or in veterinary clinics, which operate according to Law 604/1977 and PD 463/1978, following the authorization of establishment and operation by the Veterinary Directorate of the relevant Prefectural Authority. With pet medicine, veterinarians aim at (a) protecting the health and welfare of pet animals, (b) tackling zoonoses and (c) improving the overall quality of life in modern society.
Currently, more than 4,000 veterinarians work in Greece. The majority of them are employed in the central and regional departments of the Ministry of Agriculture, as well as in the veterinary services of the Prefectural Authorities. An important and ever-growing number of veterinarians practice a free profession. Other vets work in the country's VET and TEIs, in industries or commercial companies of veterinary products, in food industries, in livestock, poultry or fish farms or in other public sector services (Health Bodies of the Armed Forces, Veterinary Service of the Hellenic Police, National Agricultural Research Foundation, National Agency for Food Control, Greek Agricultural Insurance, Greek Milk and Meat Organization, Organization for the Certification and Supervision of Agricultural Products, Organization Payment lation and Control Community Aid Guidance and Guarantee Greek Medicines Agency, Biomedical Foundation of the Athens Academy, the Agricultural Bank of Greece, etc.).
The professional activities of veterinary surgeons in Greece are defined by Presidential Decree 344/2000, and they are exercised in particular as described below. The same DS defines the professional and business activities in which the employment of veterinary surgeons is compulsory.
- In livestock or mixed production farms, agro-livestock or livestock industries, banks, companies, natural or legal persons of public or private law, in secondary and tertiary education.
- In the prevention and control of any disease of mammals, animals, birds, fish, other aquatic vertebrates, beneficial insects, as well as in the medical care of the above mentioned species.
- The establishment and operation of clinics, clinics and habitats of small and large animals, wild animals and birds, as well as veterinary microbiological, biochemical, pathological and histological laboratories.
- In veterinary operations, interventions, veterinary reports, animal death certificates for any cause, and the issue of veterinary testimonials and certificates.
- Establishment and operation of food control laboratories of animal origin.
- In the design and implementation of food hazard analysis at critical control points, in the production, processing, processing and standardization of foodstuffs of animal origin.
- In the planning, testing and execution of artificial insemination.
- In the implementation, execution and control of the implantation of fertilized eggs in mammals.
- In the production, standardization, packaging, marketing and disposal of veterinary medicinal products, biological products of animal origin or other veterinary medicinal products.
- The administration of veterinary prescriptions necessary for the marketing, distribution and use of veterinary medicinal products.
- The establishment and operation of veterinary pharmacies and drugstores.
- In the production, marketing, distribution, testing and standardization of feed, concentrates, additives, as well as livestock machinery, tools and utensils.
- In the management, management, exploitation and utilization of pastures.
- In activities of animal nature and its products.
- In zoos, parks, national parks, wetlands and game farms.
- In the production, selection and marketing of animal reproductive material.
- In the sorting, processing, standardization and industrial processing of animal and fishery products, primary and secondary, in their quality, technological and health control, as well as their preservation, handling and advertising.
- The organization and operation of livestock, slaughterhouses, retailers, fish farms, cold stores and other facilities for the production and marketing of animal products.
- The preparation of studies on the creation, extension and modernization of livestock holdings and establishments for the production and marketing of animal products.
- Activities related to the protection, exploitation and maintenance of the balance of the natural environment.
- At concentrations of livestock products.
- In systematic disinfection and disinfection of spaces and ships.
- In works related to livestock and livestock insurance.
- In giving advice to institutes and consumer organizations.
- The establishment of animal breeding units.
- Production and marketing of fish-genetic material and in the production, standardization and control of fish feed.
- The development of computer programs for the organization, management and control of livestock farms.
- In the control of residues from the use of veterinary medicinal products in products and the environment.
- Certification of agricultural and livestock products.
- The collection, evaluation, maintenance, certification and use of genetic resources.
- The monitoring of production processes in agro-livestock enterprises, as well as the certification of the relevant procedures for the issuance of certificates of total quality.
- Technological and environmental control in the agro-livestock enterprises, as well as the certification of the relevant procedures for issuing the corresponding certificates.
PROFESSIONAL AND SCIENTIFIC ASSOCIATIONS OF VETERINARIANS
The Geotechnical Chamber of Greece is a government adviser on geotechnical issues, as defined in Law 1474/1984, and includes all geotechnical scientists (veterinarians, agronomists, forestologists, fish scientists, geologists) as members. For the exercise of the profession of veterinary surgeon in Greece, it is necessary to issue a license to practice from GEOTEE.
The Panhellenic Veterinary Association is the union of private veterinarians, while the Pan-Hellenic Union of Veterinary Officers is the syndicate of veterinarians employed in the wider public sector. In addition, there are other professional associations of local veterinarians (eg Association of Veterinarians of Attica, Association of Veterinarians of Minor Animals of Macedonia - Thrace, Association of Veterinarians of the Prefecture of Karditsa etc).
The Greek Veterinary Society is the main scientific veterinary association in Greece. It was founded in 1924 and is one of the oldest scientific associations in our country. CSR aims to promote, promote and validate the veterinary science and the veterinary profession. For this purpose, it publishes in the English language a quarterly scientific journal, the "Journal of the Greek Veterinary Society", and organizes pan-Hellenic veterinary conferences and other scientific meetings. Today, there are other scientific veterinary associations that cover specific fields of veterinary science (eg the Hellenic Veterinary Dermatological Society, the Hellenic Veterinary Society of Orthopedics and Traumatology, the Hellenic Society of Animal Veterinarians, etc.).