Practising evidence-based veterinary medicine is among the most important competences for a veterinarian. There is, however, no reliable evidence that veterinarians in Portugal are competent in collecting, interpreting and assessing the quality of scientific information. Moreover, in recent years, non-conventional therapies (NCTs) – such as Acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Homeopathy and Osteopathy – have become increasing popular in veterinary practice, despite the scarcity of evidence on their efficacy from unbiased, reliable, adequately designed, and well interpreted studies.
EVIEDVET aims to, firstly, comprehensively map and critically evaluate how evidence-based veterinary medicine is currently being taught to veterinary students and practitioners in Portugal, and compare the Portuguese landscape with examples from selected European veterinary schools (from Austria, Ireland and Finland). We will also explore the implications of these results for higher education in veterinary medicine, as well as for continuing education for professionals, along with the social, ethical, and deontological consequences of failing to educate for critical and scientific thinking. Lastly, we will develop educational materials for an e-learning curriculum for both higher education and continuing education of veterinary professionals.
Therefore, five research goals have been defined:
Map the teaching of EBM and NCTs at Portuguese veterinary University and Polytechnic schools.
Determine the prevalence and regulation of NCTs in veterinary clinical research and practice.
Assess current knowledge and opinions of students and educators regarding evidence-based veterinary medicine and to the use of alternative therapies in veterinary clinical practice.
Develop and disseminate educational resources and e-learning tools on evidence-based veterinary medicine.
Promote the development of Evidence-based Veterinary Medical Education in Portugal through yearly symposia.