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About us


Cattle Health Certification Standards (CHeCS) oversee the protocols for controlling and eliminating infectious endemic cattle diseases in the UK and Ireland. The Premium Cattle Health Scheme (PCHS) run by SRUC Veterinary Services is one of the largest CHeCS Licensed Schemes in the UK. Membership provides an important framework for establishing the disease status of a herd, as well as guidance for reduction, eradication, and certification of freedom from disease.

We work in close partnership with vet practices and our member farmers and offer a cost-effective programme of testing and management to control BVD, Johne’s Disease, IBR, Leptospirosis and Neospora alongside the CHeCS Bovine TB Herd Accreditation programme.

Controlling these major infectious diseases makes financial sense whether you are a pedigree or commercial beef or dairy farmer. Buyers of breeding replacements and Breed Societies are increasingly demanding stock sold with Certified Accredited health status. 

 

 

Quick links

Members' database

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Advice Guides and CHeCS Technical Document

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Testing and submission forms

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A health scheme you can trust

We employ over 20 experienced vets who are experts in identifying and reporting farm animal disease. Our team of specialist PCHS vets can support your vet and implement a programme of testing and biosecurity to help you eliminate and control disease in your herd.

We have a proven track record running health schemes since 1998. Our Health Schemes Team based at our hub at St Boswells are pleased to offer:

  • CHeCS (Cattle Health Certification Standards) certification and sale cards
  • Fully interpreted results sent promptly to you and your vet with preferential testing rates
  • PCHS maintain a database enabling you to keep track of your herd’s testing progress
  • We can provide your vets with pre-printed bar-coded labels to prevent transcription errors
  • PCHS sends you reminders when testing is due
  • An option to advertise on a PCHS membership database to thousands of potential buyers

We run a UKAS Accredited lab with our expert team of scientific staff so you can be assured of quality service.

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How does PCHS work?

You can choose to become accredited for any of the following diseases:

BVD, Johne’s Disease, IBR, Leptospirosis and Neospora alongside the CHeCS Bovine TB Herd Accreditation programme. Please ensure that you are familiar with CHeCS biosecurity guidelines before applying.

Please enrol by returning a completed application form. We will send paperwork and guidance so that your vet can sample the appropriate animals and certify that biosecurity conditions are met. Once your herd qualifies, PCHS will award you with certificates of accredited health status. There is an annual PCHS membership and we invoice you directly for any lab testing at a discounted rate.

Sample requirements

Each disease has a set of different sample requirements. Use our Quick PCHS Guide (PDF). All samples should be sent to St Boswells following Royal Mail Guidelines (PDF).

  • PCHS blood samples - please use red top tubes. Samples should be dispatched to us within 48 hours of collection and refrigerated until dispatch
  • PCHS milk samples must be used with preservative
  • PCHS BVD ear tissue samples – please keep tags in a cool dry place (DO NOT FREEZE) and submit in batches every 2 weeks to prevent sample deterioration

SRUC Veterinary Services has agreements with the ear tag companies listed below who will include the PCHS lab submission form for combined tag and test when you order tags.

Caisley operates a ‘Pay as you Go’ system so you are free to choose a lab, however, if sending it to PCHS you must use the form below.

Please note we also work with other tag brands not listed here as agreements change from time to time - please check when ordering that a tag manufacturer has a testing agreement with SRUC. You can also buy tags independently and send them to our lab. Please register your animals with BCMS before submitting

BVD test results from another laboratory

We will accept a limited number of test results from another laboratory to achieve first qualifying pass only. For clients who continue to use another testing lab for BVD tag and test for their own records, we advise that they carry out a check test via PCHS each year (please make sure you blood test 5 unvaccinated animals between 9-18 months of age in each management group totalling at least 7 animals) so that we can enter these results onto the PCHS database.

FAQs

Some questions asked by our PCHS members.

Application forms

The application form must be completed before any testing can take place.

Once you enrol, submission forms for annual testing will be sent automatically by PCHS to you and your vet. Bar coded labels will be sent for sampling apart from BVD check tests where the vet will select the animals to test.

The Submission form you are sent must be fully completed and signed by both owner/manager and vet.

All application forms should be filled out and returned to:

SRUC Veterinary Services Health Schemes, Greycrook, St Boswells, TD6 0EQ, or you can email the form to pchs1@btconnect.com

Further reading

Have a look at our advice guides and CHeCS Technical Document section for more help and information.

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