Several weeks ago one of our clients took their pet to the Tufts University College of Veterinary Medicine for emergency care. Although this pet is currently doing well, the visit to the teaching hospital was less than satisfactory. Though he had taken his pet there at the urging of his friends, I felt a need to get involved on behalf of our client (and patient) when he recounted his visit. After several calls to the veterinary hospital, I received a call back from one of the hospital administrators who had looked into the case. I found her very receptive to my criticism and, in fact, she offered to visit us at the Brockton Animal Hospital to further the discussion. One week later we spent several hours at our hospital discussing some of the ways in which I feel veterinary medicine is failing the pet owning public. Since this doctor is also involved in the education of students, she was interested in our experience with recent veterinary graduates. Many of you are aware that it has taken us three years to hire a new associate who we feel is well qualified and has the right outlook on the practice of veterinary medicine. (For those of you who have not yet met her she will be at the hospital full time in just a few weeks.) The administrator found it distressing that we had found many recent graduates unqualified for the position. The response of the hospital administrator seemed sincere in her desire to identify some of the failings of the veterinary profession both in educating doctors and providing appropriate care.
Now here is where I need your help. I have been invited to the Tufts University College of Veterinary Medicine (actually the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University) to share some of my thoughts on what is right and what is wrong in the veterinary world. The Brockton Animal Hospital has always worked hard to ensure that our clients and their pet companions have the best care, communication and compassion that we can provide at a price that is reasonable and affordable. Although we are not perfect we always try to respond to our clients’ needs and desires as honestly and quickly as possible. When we occasionally get things wrong, we expect and plead with you to let us know so we can make them right. In that same vein we now have the opportunity to provide input to one of the premier veterinary colleges in the US in helping to shape the education of future doctors. I need your help in bringing to the surface aspects of veterinary care that are of the greatest importance to you. If you have had positive experiences that you would like to share (no names please) as well as awful experiences that you hope will never happen again please weigh in. It is my goal to help to educate the educators as to what is of the greatest importance to the “extraordinary veterinary consumers” that we seem to serve in our practice. My meeting is next week so please don’t procrastinate. Veterinary medicine really needs your help on this one. As always, your input is greatly appreciated.