AUA Mission Statement

Below is the AUA’s proposal to the Regulator, submitted April 2016, to become a Community Interest Company (approval granted May, 2016).

 

SECTION A:

The company’s activities will provide benefit to people and animals across the United Kingdom, by providing a freely accessible resource through which individuals can find and verify trained and insured ultrasound scanning professionals, using appropriate, CE-marked ultrasound equipment.

The last few years have seen a proliferation of untrained people, with inappropriate and unsafe equipment (cheaply available on online marketplaces such as eBay), offering a scanning service to the general public. This is due to the fact that external ultrasound scanning of animals is completely unregulated in the UK. This results in pet owners paying for an inadequate service, which often leaves them feeling worried and uneasy, and in the event that a serious problem (such as pyometra) were missed and not referred to a veterinarian, this could have serious – even tragic – consequences for people’s pets.

In addition, the livelihoods of people who have spent many years training, gaining experience and purchasing safe and appropriate ultrasound equipment are being harmed by these untrained individuals. Indeed, as more and more ‘horror stories’ emerge, the reputation of the entire animal scanning industry is now at stake.

Through public education initiatives and online advertising, the Animal Ultrasound Association (AUA) will seek to ensure that animal owners are aware of the existence of a free, searchable database, where they can verify the training and experience level of scanners.

Through the voluntary time contributions of two professional sonographers and a veterinarian, the AUA will also invest in ongoing training and development for its members, to ensure that all remain fully compliant and aware of the latest developments in ultrasound technology, safety, hygiene and infection control.

In addition, many of our future members (known to us through our Facebook group for professional animal scanners) already participate in a number of charitable activities, such as performing voluntary scanning work for animal shelters and rehoming charities. We also plan to cooperate with charities such as the Wildlife Aid Foundation through the donation of preowned ultrasound equipment, for them to use in their vital work of treating and rehabilitating wild animals.

 

SECTION B:

Activities:

  • Provide a free, searchable database of approved animal scanners, categorised by the animal type(s) for which they have training, certification and insurance.

How it benefits the community:

  • Allows the general public to find ultrasound scanners who are fully trained in performing a pregnancy scan and know that they are offering an opinion only, and never a veterinary diagnosis. In other words, these trained individuals are highly experienced in spotting normal pregnancy, and whenever in doubt, they immediately refer to a veterinarian. They are also highly educated in the appropriate operation of their equipment. This ensures that people receive a full and professional service, and the safety of the animal is never at risk.

Activities:

  • Differentiates and protects the work of its members

How it benefits the community:

  • Helps to safeguard the reputation and livelihood of individuals who have invested both time and money into educating themselves appropriately to perform animal pregnancy scanning.

Activities:

  • Provide free or subsidised training for members

How it benefits the community:

  • The AUA will organise courses and guest lectures by 2018, to ensure the continued professional development of its members. It will also require every member to submit 3 case studies per year for review by a professional sonographer, to ensure that standards are maintained and consistent. This follows the format of all similar ultrasound organisations, such as the BSE (British Society of Echocardiography).

Activities:

  • Undertaking charitable work

How it benefits the community:

  • Members’ voluntary work will be reported on our website. This most frequently involves voluntary scanning at rescue shelters, and donation of time or equipment to animal charities. This will also help to raise the profile of local charities, and of the work of our members.

 

If the company makes a surplus it will:

Any surplus will be reinvested back into the company, to develop and improve services. It may also be invested into other CICs or community projects carrying out activities complementary to those of the Animal Ultrasound Association CIC.

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