Westway Vets boosted by £250k investment and new practice manager

A NORTH East veterinary group has received a double boost with the appointment of a new practice manager and £250,000 of investment in state-of-the-art technology

At 28, former veterinary nurse Mark Turnbull is one of the youngest practice managers in the UK following his appointment at Westway Veterinary Group, which has 18 sites across the region.

His first task since his arrival has been assisting the existing management team in overseeing installation of a new high-tech CT scanner at their main veterinary hospital on West Road, Newcastle, to provide more advanced diagnostic services for orthopaedics, soft tissue cases and tumour analysis.

Mr Turnbull said: “The CT scanner cost £155,000 and the total level of investment comes to £250,000 after expanding the site after taking over part of a neighbouring newsagents and upskilling veterinary nurses to operate the equipment. The CT scanner will enable us to offer a fast, efficient imaging service, with a more detailed three-dimensional view of patients to provide a quick diagnosis service.

“We will continually invest in the practice to ensure we offer a wide range and a high standard of clinical services, and expand them where necessary.

“We have further expansion plans for so we can offer additional consult times for clients, and we also want to extend our West Road hospital. After opening a new cat-only unit in 2016, we plan to expand our hospital facilities for dogs as part of our growth.”

Westway Vets is the largest veterinary group in the North East, employing 40 vets, 70 nurses and an 80-strong client care team at branches from Wideopen down to Darlington.

The investment in new facilities has been provided by UK veterinary group, VetPartners, which owns 128 of the UK’s most respected and trusted small animal, equine, farm and mixed practices, including Westway Vets.

Mr Turnbull, who lives in Riding Mill in the Tyne Valley, has returned to Westway Vets to assist the existing management team in the day-to-day running of the practice after four years working as IT Projects and Infrastructure Manager at VetPartners, whose headquarters is in York. He helped to oversee IT installation and the smooth running of systems at VetPartners’ UK practices.

It marks an emotional  return to veterinary practice as it was at Westway Vets that he qualified as a Registered Veterinary Nurse in 2013. He joined VetPartners in 2015 when Westway Vets became one of the UK’s group’s founding practices.

He said: “The experience of overseeing multiple practices and multiple ways of working has helped me gain new ideas to bring to my role as practice manager at Westway Vets.

“I’ve been part of the veterinary industry for 13 years after first doing work experience at weekends and evenings, and have a great love of the profession. As a veterinary nurse, I’ve worked in James Herriot -style mixed practices and a specialist referral hospitals, dealing with everything from nurse consultations to assisting with orthopaedic and neuro surgery.

“But it’s great to be ‘home’ at Westway Vets and it is all about helping the team here to thrive. They are a very caring, knowledgeable group of people with great skills and expertise.”

For media enquiries, please contact Amanda Little, VetPartners Senior PR and Communications Manager, on 07970 198 492 or email amanda.little@vetpartners.co.uk

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