Professional News

Veterinary Board of Governors approves technician program opposed by the veterinary profession

  |   Professional News

At their May 5 special meeting, the Veterinary Board of Governors (VBOG) voted to endorse a proposed apprenticeship program for veterinary technicians, a decision that has upset several state and national veterinary associations. The proposal was brought forward by Cascade Veterinary Clinics (CVC) in central Washington and the North Central Workforce Development Council (NCWDC) as an answer to the local shortage of veterinary technicians. The Board’s vote concluded a two-year process. Lack of accreditation The main reason for the opposition from veterinary...

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Promising treatment for canine eating disorder

  |   Professional News

Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine announced this week that Sildenafil, the generic version of the drug known as Viagra, could be the long-awaited remedy for a group of dogs with a rare disorder called megaesophagus. The condition involves an enlargement of the esophagus and a loss of the organ’s ability to move food to the stomach, which leaves food bottling up in the lower esophagus. If left untreated, many animals regurgitate their food and aspirate food into their lungs,...

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AVMA Veterinary Leadership Conference 2022 Report

  |   Professional News

The AVMA House of Delegates (HOD) and Veterinary Leadership Conference (VLC) were held in a hybrid manner January 6-9, 2022. Attendees were able to participate live in person in Chicago or virtually as travel and pandemic conditions allowed. There were informational updates covering a number of topics, including wellness, economics, DEI, and advocacy. Washington was represented by Drs. Diana Thomé (Delegate), Gary Marshall (Alternate Delegate), and Sandy Willis (District Director.) It will come as no surprise that updates regarding wellness showed...

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Veterinary Shortage Areas Designated in Washington state

  |   Professional News

Are you having trouble finding a veterinarian to work on your livestock?  Is your veterinarian getting older and unable to find another veterinarian to provide service in your area? Has your veterinarian retired and closed the doors?  In the last year, the Washington State Veterinarian’s Office has been hearing increasing concerns about a shortage of food animal and livestock veterinarians in our state. In response, the State Vet’s Office successfully nominated for inclusion four veterinary shortage areas in our state, opening...

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Medically important antibiotics to move from OTC to Rx

  |   Professional News

By June 2023, all medically important antibiotics will require veterinary oversight to be used in animals, even if the animals are not intended for food production. Last June, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration finalized guidance for industry #263 (GFI 263) to outline the process for animal drug sponsors to change the approved marketing status of certain antimicrobial drugs from over-the-counter (OTC) to prescription (Rx). Examples of affected products include injectable penicillin and oxytetracycline. Though the guidance provides for a two-year implementation period, some products may...

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VMLRP: Shortage Area Nominations Due Now!

  |   Professional News

If you believe you are in a veterinary shortage area situation, contact the State Veterinarian to establish a nomination as soon as possible. Completed applications are due November 8. A national panel of animal health experts will evaluate the nomination to determine if the area can be designated as a shortage area. Each year approximately 190 shortage situations are approved across the United States with about 150 veterinarians applying for 60-70 available awards. If you are having trouble recruiting or retaining veterinarians in...

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Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program and Veterinary Services Grant Program

  |   Professional News

Washington has had very few applications for either the VMLRP or the VSGP in the last decade.  If you are having trouble recruiting or retaining veterinarians in your food animal practice or you need specialized equipment or support to expand services in a shortage area, consider these two grant opportunities. The VMLRP will pay up to $25,000 each year towards qualified educational loans of eligible veterinarians who agree to serve in a NIFA-designated veterinarian shortage situation for a period of three...

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WSVMA extends member benefit for coaching, career counseling and support

  |   Professional News

The WSVMA is extending the personal- and professional support member benefit originally established last year to support WSVMA members in navigating COVID-19-related stressors. Dr. Carrie La Jeunesse, DVM, CT, CFE is offering discounted 50-minute coaching, career counseling, and personal/professional support sessions tailored to individual WSVMA members. Sessions are first come, first served. Discounted fees are on a sliding scale of $65 to $95 per hour. Individuals may choose the fee that best fits their current personal financial circumstances; that fee will...

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WA pharmacists advised on filling prescriptions for ivermectin

  |   COVID-19, Professional News

The Washington Pharmacy Quality Assurance Commission (PQAC) sent out a communication to pharmacists this week with a reminder that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved ivermectin for use in treating or preventing COVID-19 in humans and it has not been proven safe or effective for this indication. PQAC advised pharmacists receiving prescriptions for ivermectin for the treatment of prevention of COVID-19 should use their professional judgment in determining whether to fill them and if they have...

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State veterinarian retires, assistant state vet takes interim reins

  |   Professional News

For the past five years, Dr. Brian Joseph has served as the Washington State Veterinarian, an office within the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA). Last Friday, he hung up his stethoscope and said hello to retirement, or rather his version of retirement. The agency will not be immediately replacing Dr. Joseph. Assistant state veterinarian Dr. Amber Itle will serve as the interim state veterinarian while the agency works on determining the best path forward in filling the position permanently. In retirement,...

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