A first for London: complete-service veterinary referral centre launches in the capital

Posted on by admin

London’s pets and their owners now have the benefit of access to consultant veterinary treatment on their doorstep, thanks to a new state-of-the art facility. Instead of travelling many miles to see a specialist vet, the capital’s owners may now have their beloved pet referred to a local veterinary consultant, reducing stress, time and inconvenience all round.

London Vet Specialists (LVS) has opened its doors, led by senior surgeon and soft tissue specialist, Dr Janet Kovak McClaran, former head of the department of surgery at the world-renowned Animal Medical Center in New York. Dr Kovak McClaran leads a team of consultants specialising in internal medicine and surgery, diagnostic imaging, emergency and critical care, anaesthesia and analgesia, and minimally-invasive surgery. It is the first facility in the capital to offer a complete referral service under one roof.

The Belsize Park centre was set up to enable London-based vets to access expert help across key areas when referring their patients on for specialist care. Dr Kovak McClaran explains:

“When I was approached about setting up a referral centre servicing central and greater London, I was surprised a dedicated facility didn’t already exist. Previously, referring clinicians have had to send clients on long journeys outside of the capital, leading to patient stress and hassle and extra expense for the owners. Now, they have the reassurance of access to a highly-experienced secondary and tertiary level referral team on their doorstep.”


Patient and customer care is prioritised at LVS and is based on the acclaimed model used by Sydney’s SASH Vets (Small Animal Specialist Hospital). LVS Client Relations Manager Claire Newton helped to develop the SASH system, which concentrates on delivering the highest standards of patient care, alongside a dedicated support system for the client and referring vet. Ms Newton explains how the London Vet Specialists service works:

“From the very start of the referral process, customer care is prioritised. In this we consider that we have two customers; the first, the referring vet, who needs to feel that he or she has an integral role in the ongoing management of the case, and that his or her client is well looked after. Our second customer, the pet owner or client, needs to be looked after with compassion and respect, and have the ability to speak directly to the clinician in charge of their pet, at any point. Excellent two-way communication is key. We ensure that we listen and respond to the needs of both parties through every step of the customer journey.”

The LVS facility boasts a state-of-the-art surgical theatre, and the minimally-invasive surgery suite is one of only three in the UK.  An onsite CT scanner forms part of a full array of imaging equipment, operated by European Specialist in Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging, Dr Livia Benigni. The immediate interpretation of images makes for seamless patient investigation and negates the need for repeated patient anaesthetics.

Internal Medicine consultant Dr Kaye Gugich, together with board-certified Emergency and Critical Care Specialist Dr Adam Mugford, and Dr Karla Borland, complete the consultant team.

London Vet Specialists is the only facility in central London to offer a full-time specialist surgery facility alongside an emergency and critical care service. Emergency stabilisation and intensive care of the sickest of patients is available around the clock, with experienced clinicians and a nursing team ensuring continuous supervision, day or night. The LVS surgery team is also on call to the hospital overnight should specialist emergency surgery be required out of hours.

For more information on London Vet Specialists, or to speak to Ms Newton about referring a patient, visit www.londonvetspecialists.vet, email Claire.newton@londonvetspecialists.vet, or telephone 0207 4330155.

Photos: Dr Janet Kovak McClaran, lead specialist; Claire Newton, Client Services Manager; the minimally-invasive surgical suite and the GE Brivio CT 385 scanner. High res versions of the images are available.

Press contact: Emma Dahm, Mojo Consultancy, emma@mojoconsultancy.com, Telephone 07730 278499