Netherlands Association for Companion Animal Medicine (NACAM)

The Netherlands | Full Member

Drs. Erik Gostelie 

WSAVA Representative:
Drs. Daphne Westgeest
Phone: +31 6 27408687

Members: 990


P.O. Box 421, 3990 GE Houten, The Netherlands


Present board 2016:

Drs. Erik Gostelie

Board Members:
Drs. Maico Boumans
Dr. Jeffrey de Gier
Drs. Hanny Dijkstra
Drs. Daphne Westgeest (WSAVA Representative)





The NACAM unites the companion animal veterinarians in the Netherlands within the KNMvD (Royal Netherlands Veterinary Association). As part of the KNMvD, the NACAM promotes the professional and social development of companion animal 

veterinarians when it comes to animal welfare, animal health and public health. 


The group’s core values are:

Transparency of quality





Mission statement

“To place a priority on the companion animal veterinarian, in the interest of both man and his pet”



The NACAM aims to position companion animal veterinarians as independent experts in the field of the health and welfare of companion animals. Companion animal veterinarians are also the guardian of  public health; ‘One Health’ and zoonoses are important themes. 

The NACAM strives for continuous improvement in the quality of veterinary medicine for companion animals, the goal of which is to 

advance the health and welfare of companion animals. The NACAM is also fully aware of the socio-economic position of companion animal veterinarians. 

As part of the KNMvD, the NACAM champions the interests of companion animal veterinarians, both those within the association as well as other parties.


NACAM Annual Report to WSAVA for 2016

View report here.


NACAM Annual report to WSAVA for 2015



Spearheads for 2016


The NACAM has identified the following themes as spearheads of policy for 2016:

1. Quality

2. Animal welfare

3. Association


Vision of the future

Developments within society and within the profession of companion animal veterinarians have consequences for the practice of the veterinary profession in the long-term. 


On Google a lot of information can be found, which the owner will bring into the exam-room.  Another development is the emerge of web-shops, veterinary hospitals in garden centers and other forms of business, such as veterinarians working in hospital vehicles.The self-employed vet will need to come up with effective solutions.


The growth in the number of pets in recent years has stagnated, and within the companion animal veterinarian sector, the crisis has become tangible in the past few years. Although some have indicated that the low point of the crisis is already behind us, the sector is still suffering from it. The growth in the number of dogs and cats in the Netherlands is decreasing, as is the average weight of the animals. In addition, the Positive List was introduced in 2015, which could reduce the number of different animal types seen in the surgery.

As a result, among other things, of the rise of the internet as a source of information for the consumer, people are increasingly better informed about (possible) veterinary healthcare for their pets. Owners expect optimum care for their pets. For the consumer, it goes without saying that the companion animal veterinarian must provide high quality care, both during the opening hours of the veterinary practice and outside them. This development will continue. It is therefore important that this quality is visible and can be monitored, in order to be able to continue demonstrably to meet the wishes of the consumer.


As in some other medical sectors, there are increasing numbers of female colleagues within the pet veterinary sector. In addition, a shift is taking place in society, in which the balance between work and private life is becoming increasingly important. Both the increasing number of women and the balance shift are factors which are set to change the face of the profession. 

In response to this, the services will increasingly be managed more centrally in future, by larger groups of veterinarians working together, and with separate central service locations. A shift can also be expected in the types of practices; there will be greater differentiation and new forms of cooperation.

Finally, it is expected that increasing numbers of veterinarians will be returning to the workplace, who will need to have their veterinary knowledge refreshed before they can again provide the quality expected of them.


The companion animal veterinarian is an important expert in the area of animal welfare. He/she is the perfect discussion partner in identifying the problem of hereditary diseases and is are part of the solution. The health aspects relating to hereditary diseases and harmful breed characteristics are recognized by veterinarians. Provision of information on this is an important task of companion animal veterinarians, as is helping to find solutions to problems already present.


The NACAM recognizes the importance of permanent education. To organise interesting courses is an ongoing challenge. With the arrival of chains and new cooperation forms it is to be expected that these groups will organize their own education. For the NACAM it is important that the quality of permanent education is secured.


Finally, veterinarians are seen as gatekeepers for public health, for example in the area of zoonoses. The relationship between pet and pet owner has changed in the course of time. Today, a pet is much more a family-member than it used to be. Vets not only have a task in recognizing and tackling zoonoses, he/she can also provide information to the human healthcare sector regarding the prevention and occurrence of zoonotic problems. 



1. Quality


In 2015 the KNMvD has repositioned the Central Quality Register for Veterinarians (CKRD) and has introduced PE-Veterinair. The emphasis now is to stimulate veterinarians to participate, incentives will be looked into. For reintegrating veterinarians and veterinary technicians participation should be possible and stimulated. Area of interest is the design of a quality register for veterinary technicians. With securing their quality the opportunities for employability in te veterinary practice will grow.


Quality is an important subject to the NACAM. The NACAM will monitor the implementation of the developed guidelines and how they fit into the veterinary practice. She wants to support her members by organizing good education on these subjects.


Participants in permanent education offered by the NACAM (VJD, NJD and PEGD) take part in the evaluation of the quality, and in identifying the needs in terms of refresher courses. The NACAM considers refresher courses for its members to be of crucial importance. Although permanent education for veterinarians is a free market, the NACAM wants to maintain control of the range offered and quality within its own permanent education range. The conditions which its own permanent education range must meet include a good price/quality ratio and demonstrable benefits to NACAM members. Other important aspects are the development of intervision (IODI) and inter-colleague consultation (IODC).


Veterinary technicians who work in professional development (through refresher courses) must also be able to provide insight and transparency. This could be facilitated by a register. The authorizations of the veterinary technicians must be clear, and bottlenecks must be discussed with the authorized bodies.


Quality is also defined by the responsible use of antibiotics. Formularies are currently being revised and there is ongoing research by the SDA and Faculty of Veterinary Medicine (Utrecht).


In 2016:

1. The NACAM will see to that he guidelines are subject of permanent education (VJD, NJD)

2. The NACAM is closely involved in the development of a register for veterinary technicians to record their permanent education

3. Bottlenecks in the authorizations of veterinary technicians will be discussed with stakeholders 

4. The NACAM collaborates with PEGD in investigating innovative forms of permanent education

5. The NACAM will pay attention to the revised formularies

6. A supporting English text for providers of eduction on our guidelines and antibiotic use is created

7. The NACAM will follow up the SDA research if necessary 



2. Animal welfare


The more prominent proactive positioning of the KNMvD in relation to the securing of animal welfare offers opportunities for veterinarians. This accounts for the image of the association and branch in social discussions, the development of government policy and the implementation of animal welfare. 

The issues surrounding health and welfare of pets are often caused by a lack of knowledge – including zootechnical knowledge – and skills with regard to keeping these animals. The NACAM wants to improve public information provision regarding the responsible keeping of pets by means of LICG campaigns. The LICG (national information center for companion animals) is an important partner of the NACAM. It provides the largest and probably the only independent informative website for (future) pet owners. The website helps vets and owners with reliable and evidence base advises. The NACAM recognizes the importance of the LICG and gives her support both financially and managerial. Through the LICG the NACAM wants to give attention to the humane and veterinary health risks of the international traffic of companion animals.

The rabbit is a beloved pet in the Netherlands and gains popularity. The NACAM considers it of great importance that there is attention for the welfare of this species. 

Through the working group for rabbit medicine the NACAM wants to support her members with more information on this subject.


Another point for attention is irresponsible breeding of pets, resulting in health and welfare problems. A new guideline covering this was introduced in 2015, which needs a position in our permanent education. The Fairfokproject will be enrolled in 2016, the NACAM is closely involved. 

For more then 10 years the NACAM wanted to realize a reporting center for hereditary diseases. We are pleased that the Utrecht University has created a system with the same purpose: PETscan. This project has the objective to map the incidence of hereditary diseases and harmful breed characteristics in cats and dogs. In 2016 the NACAM wants to support this project financially and will ask PMS-suppliers to make it available for companion animal practitioners.


The NACAM will provide input through steering group sessions and other consultation structures on developments regarding regulations on the Positive List (the list of mammals you are allowed to keep in the Netherlands unconditionally), in the interests of the welfare of small animals.


In 2016:

1. the NACAM will continue to financially support the LICG

2. attention will be paid in the PEGD program and on the VJD and NJD to subjects relating to the responsible breeding of pets and the new guideline

3. the NACAM will carry out active political lobbying on subjects pertaining to the welfare of pets (for example on traveling with pets, Identification & Registration of dogs/cats, EU passports), at the Ministry of Economic Affairs, government departments and other stakeholders.

4. The NACAM supports the project PETscan financially and will ask PMS-suppliers to participate

5. A LICG-campaign will be initiated on human and veterinary health risks involved with the international traffic of companion animals



3. Association


An important spearhead for the KNMVD in 2016 is the expansion and connection of her members. Collective interests for the long term can conflict with the individual needs on the short term. Especially practitioning veterinarians sometimes do not feel represented by their association. The association does not succeed in showing her members how their interests are being represented. Young vets are not convinced the added value of their KNMvD-membership.

The organization of the KNMvD has undergone a number of changes in recent years. The NACAM would like to strengthen its position within the association, in order better to promote the interests of small animal veterinarians.


A tendency is seen that veterinarians with the same area of interest feel the need to unite to share their knowledge and experiences. The NACAM realizes this by facilitating working groups. In 2016 the working groups will be structured and brought to the attention of our members.


As described above, our branch is developing and changing. The NACAM plans to organize a discussion/theme event on this subject. A FAQ is put together on hot topics for NACAM-members.


In 2016:

1. The NACAM organizes a theme night about the developments in our branch

2. Working groups will be structured and brought to attention of NACAM-members

3. a FAQ is assembled on hot topics for the members

4. The NACAM will organize the NJD in collaboration with PEGD