School of Veterinary Medicine and Science

Catherine Oxtoby






I graduated from the University of Bristol as a veterinary surgeon in 2000 and went into general practice for 13 years, working initially as a traditional mixed vet before concentrating on equine practice. In 2013 I was awarded a 3 year scholarship to undertake a PhD at Nottingham School of Veterinary Medicine and Science.

Degree Registration:

PhD, due for completion in September 2016

School Research Theme:

Veterinary Educational Development

Research Topic:

Patient safety in veterinary practice.

Summary of Research:

The causes of errors in medicine and other safety critical industries have been attributed to system failures and cognitive limitations, rather than ‘bad’ physicians. This human factors approach to error has led to the development of safety culture measurement tools and interventions such as the World Health Organisation’s Safe Surgery Checklist in an effort to mitigate errors. This PhD aims to investigate the causes of error in veterinary practice, to inform the development of tools and interventions which can be employed to reduce the incidence of adverse events and increase quality of veterinary care.

Research Supervisors:

Dr Liz Mossop

Professor Eamonn Ferguson

Kate White

Primary Funding Source:

University of Nottingham


• OXTOBY, C. 2014. Patient safety: the elephant in the room. J Small Anim Pract, 55, 389-90.


School of Veterinary Medicine and Science

University of Nottingham
Sutton Bonington Campus
Leicestershire, LE12 5RD

telephone: +44 (0)115 951 6116
fax: +44 (0)115 951 6415