Official Controls Qualification
(Veterinary) OCQ(V)

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New OVs

How do I become an OV?

To become an OV, please register via this website, then enrol for the relevant OCQ(V)s – you can view a list of the training courses that are available below. If you wish to be considered for OV status, you must:

  • pass the appropriate OCQ(V)(s)
  • hold current Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) membership
  • tick the relevant box to apply to the APHA to be awarded OV status if you work in England, Scotland or Wales*

* Veterinarians who work on Jersey or Guernsey should apply directly to their government department for OV status on completion of the required OCQ(V)(s).

For an overview of the OCQ(V) training,
click here

What training courses are available?

Do vets working as locums need to do anything differently?

If you work as a locum, you must ensure that you keep the details of the practices where you are working up to date at all times. If you are working in more than one practice at a time, further addresses may be entered in the comments box in the 'Update details' section of your Personal Training Dashboard.

Can non-RCVS members take the courses?

Yes – although non-RCVS members cannot be authorised as OVs, anyone can train for and hold any OCQ(V)s, irrespective of whether they currently work in the field covered by the qualification.

Overseas veterinarians may wish to gain relevant OCQ(V)s before applying for work in the UK in order to gain a competitive advantage in the work place. Please be aware that all courses and course work must be completed in English. The cost of the training is the same anywhere in the world and payment is in GBP. Please click here for more information on fees.

It is only possible to complete the practical element of the OCQ(V) - TT course if you are a member of the RCVS and working in a practice within the UK. You may begin and complete the online element in advance as long as you meet the required criteria and timelines. If in doubt, please contact us before paying for training for this OCQ(V).

To find out more about registering for RCVS membership, please click here.

Should you lose your RCVS membership, your OV authorisation will be automatically expired and must be reinstated by APHA, along with any appropriate terms, before you may operate as an OV again. It is your responsibility to ensure that your RCVS membership is up to date in order to remain an OV.

What else should I be aware of?

OVs are not obliged to undertake OV work and no commitment is made by APHA in relation to the availability of government-funded OV work. An OCQ(V) is taken by you and becomes part of your CPD record. The qualification is portable between employers, and you must ensure that any changes to your contact and practice details are updated on your Personal Training Dashboard.

You must upload a scan or photograph of your signature when you register, to enable APHA to carry out checks (for example, on Export Health Certificates). Therefore, you must ensure that your signature is legible and always kept up to date. Guidelines are provided to help.

To help you decide which course is relevant, please see the questions below. To read more detailed information about each course, please click on the links above or see About the OCQ(V)s.

What would you like to do?

To view more options, please click on the ‘Qualifications’ tab above

For Animal Health Paraprofessional training, please visit:

Counts of OVs Authorised by APHA in GB




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