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Amid the emotions and noise accompanying the build-up to the 2020 U.S. Presidential election, you may have overlooked election activity closer to home…The VHMA and CVPM Board of Directors 2019-2021 elections! While it is not the blood sport that politics has become, your voice is critically important in selecting those to lead our association and profession. Keep your eyes on your email because every member eligible to vote will receive an official proxy ballot electronically. Be sure to complete your proxy and make your vote count. If you haven’t seen it yet, the slate of nominees for the VHMA and CVPM boards is impressive. These individuals have dedicated ...
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Although marijuana is legal for medicinal and recreational purposes in several states, the drug remains illegal under federal law. Only a few states that have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes require employers to provide reasonable accommodation to employees who may use the drug for medicinal purposes. As of the date of this response, those states are: Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, Nevada and New York. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) supports consistent testing and regulation of the drug in the workplace, and workers compensation underwriters take the same position. Businesses that have ...
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Live the VHMA Life

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Summer greetings VHMA - We are well into the ‘Dog Days of Summer’ and for some of you on the Atlantic coast, you have been having record high temperatures. If you're like me, you are loving the hot weather and sunshine. As everyone is relaxing on summer vacation or enjoying the slower family pace that comes with summer break from school, VHMA is looking ahead and focused on our next big event: VHMA’s 2019 Annual Meeting and Conference ! This meeting happens each year in September or October and is our largest event of the year. For many members this is the primary meeting for earning those precious continuing education hours. Guided by the VHMA’s mission ...
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Twenty years ago, most veterinary practices didn’t have a practice manager; these tasks were performed by the owner of the practice. As practices have gotten bigger and the environment in which veterinary medicine operates has gotten more complex, it is rare to find a practice that doesn’t have at least a part-time management person. The management team in many practices has also grown both in size and skill set. VHMA’s July 2019 Insiders’ Insights survey explored both management team structure and function. Only 26% of the managers surveyed have a formal, written contract, and very few of those contracts were written by an attorney. Contracts for both ...
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Educating clients about programs, procedures and treatment is a significant piece of what we do in the veterinary field. Practices committed to promoting preventive pet healthcare can find extensive tools and resources through the  Partners for Healthy Pets website . Some of these resources focus on how managers can equip staff to discuss preventive pet healthcare, including how to broach the topic, ways to deal with resistant client and a host of other topics. The scripts allow staff to familiarize themselves with key aspects of the program, so they are sure to present the most salient information. However, the scripts cannot smooth out the rough spots ...
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Facing Disruptors Head On

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I’m a few weeks back from the VHMA’s annual Strategic Planning Meeting. For three long, but productive days, the leadership team reviewed and discussed industry, education and association trends, and reviewed and updated the VHMA’s Strategic Plan. We focused quite a bit on disruptors, the forces that have the potential to change the way we do business. We discussed over 45 of them and among those mentioned were nichification, fast data, microlearning, generational differences, declining trust, and work redefined. While disruptors alter business operations and trigger changes in many areas of society, they also create opportunities for innovation, whether ...
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The VHMA is pleased to announce the launch of our 2019 Compensation and Benefits Survey. As we have done in past years, the survey is broken into three sections: Associate DVM, Veterinary Managers and Support Staff.  VHMA’s Management Job Descriptions  are provided so that you can appropriately complete the manager portions of the surveys. Please be sure to complete each section of the survey. Below you will find each of the survey links for your use. PDF Forms:   Associate DVM Veterinary Managers Support Staff Online Survey Links:   Associate DVM Veterinary Managers Support Staff All responses are confidential, ...
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The Nominating Committee of the Certified Veterinary Practice Manager (CVPM) Board presents the following Slate of Nominees for the Offices of the Board of Directors for the 2019-2021 term. CHAIR:  Susie Crockett, CVPM (Indianapolis, IN) CO-CHAIR:  Mary Beth Soto, CVPM (Flower Mount, TX) TREASURER:  Stephanie Albanese, CVPM (Mt. Pleasant, SC) SECRETARY:  Melissa Tompkins, BS, CVPM (Long Beach, CA) DIRECTORS:  Everette W. Bannister III, DVM, CVPM (Milton, GA) and Janine Kakoyannis, CVPM (San Diego, CA) An official proxy ballot will be electronically mailed to each member eligible to vote. The results will be presented to the membership at the annual ...
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Digital Media Management

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Most practices are spending more time and money on marketing activities than they used to keep their practices growing and keep clients bonded to the hospital. Digital media can be time-consuming to manage, and the practices who do it most successfully have clearly assigned team roles and a detailed digital marketing plan that keeps everyone on schedule and moving towards the same goal. This month's Insiders’ Insight survey takes a look at how practices do this. When asked “Who created your practice website?” about 23% of the practices did this all themselves; for 45% of the practices, it was a combined effort between the practice team and an outside marketing ...
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This popular quote has been floating around the internet for years. Although its origin is unknown, the sentiment is spot on. The difference between using social media and a social media strategy is the difference between having access to a tool and receiving an instruction manual that details how to use that tool effectively. For those of you who are committed to increasing the emphasis on preventive pet healthcare in the practice, social media can help to develop a stronger connection to clients and increase buy in from clients. As you try to deepen the understanding of your target audience, it is helpful to identify an approach and messaging that becomes ...
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The Nominating Committee of the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association, Inc. presents the following Slate of Nominees for the Offices of the Board of Directors for the 2019-2021 term. PRESIDENT:  Michelle Gonzales, CVPM (Tempe, AZ) VICE PRESIDENT:  Jessica Speas, CVPM, SPHR-CA, SHRM-SCP (La Crescenta, CA) SECRETARY:  Leslie Boudreau, BASVT, RVTg, CVPM, PHR, PHRca (Huntington Beach, CA)  TREASURER:  Scott Zimmerman, BFA, CVPM (Decatur, GA) DIRECTORS: Karli Carter, CVPM (Payson, UT) Kim Drummond, BSN, CVPM (Seattle, WA) Elizabeth Fritzler, DVM, CVPM (Seattle, WA) Joanne Graham, CVPM, SHRM-CP (Nashville, TN) Tiffany Killion-Consalvo, CVPM (Gilbertsville, ...
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The Veterinary Hospital Managers Association (VHMA) is pleased to announce that 27 veterinary management professionals earned the  Certified Veterinary Practice Manager (CVPM)  credential in April 2019. The VHMA’s CVPM credential, which is voluntary, is recognized as the sign of professional achievement and excellence and is awarded to those who demonstrate the knowledge and experience necessary to successfully manage the ever-changing operations of today's veterinary practices. The class of April 2019 includes: Alicia Artman Kathy Bell Rebecca A. Bunker Patti Christie Emily Colyer Debra Downs Karin Fary Krista Fuld Paul (Chris) Fuson ...
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Practice Purchasing

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Many factors are essential to the practice of quality medicine and surgery including having an appropriate range of high-quality equipment for both diagnostics and treatment and the right medications, supplies, and food to use in-house or send home with clients. The process for purchasing and replenishing these items varies from practice to practice, and May’s Monthly Management Survey asks about that process. No surprise, the practice owner (typically a veterinarian) makes the final decision in 75% of the purchases of medical equipment and about 55%-60% of computer hardware and software purchases. This makes sense due to the higher cost of equipment and ...
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Recognizing Your Hard Work

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Graduation season is upon us. I am sure that most of us have or are planning to attend some type of graduation or award ceremony this year. I know that I feel so much respect and admiration for those being recognized for their hard work. As manager’s our efforts often go unnoticed and our teams are generally unaware of the crisis averted due to our work behind the scenes. For us, the satisfaction from a job well done is enough. Well, it doesn’t have to be! We are currently accepting applications for the dvm360/VHMA Practice Manager of the Year (PMOY). This incredibly prestigious award is in its fifth year as one of the industry’s few opportunities to highlight ...
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Preventive pet healthcare can have a significant positive impact on the health and well-being of pets. While there is strong buy in among veterinary professionals and many pet owners are on board, we’ve all encountered clients who are skeptical, uninterested or opposed to the processes and procedures to increase the emphasis on preventive care. Forward booking makes sense and ensures that patients are on track to receive regular prophylactic care. But for the commitment-shy or those who don’t like to look too far into the future, forward booking can be a tough sell. As most of you know, forward booking is the process of booking ALL patients’ next appointments ...
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You could be the next  dvm360/VHMA Practice Manager of the Year . All it takes is a short survey, a few thoughtful responses ... and, yes, a willingness to fight past your natural humility and tell us what you've done to make happy team members, to grow revenue and to create a healing environment in your veterinary practice. dvm360.com and the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association (VHMA) are devoted to helping veterinary practice managers grow, blossom and thrive in your careers. We know you are the backbone of financially healthy, well-led and inspirational veterinary hospitals. You help guide hospitals through troubled times. You put smiles on ...
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Animal Health Digest  (AHD) and the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association (VMHA) are now collaborating to provide VHMA members and constituents with AHD content. Beginning May 1, VHMA members will have free access to the weekly  AHD Bulletin  through VHMA’s Facebook posts. Additionally, VHMA leadership will select specific AHD posts that will be included in the monthly VHMA newsletter. According to VHMA Executive Director Christine Shupe,  “Access to AHD aggregated content will allow VHMA to increase the routine information, management trend focused content, and important industry news that the association offers its members.” “Hospital managers are ...
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Telehealth

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Telemedicine is a hot topic right now and has generated a lot of controversy over whether it should be part of how veterinary medicine is practiced. Some of this controversy is due to confusion over what all the “tele-terms” really mean; however, some of the controversy is also over real issues related to whether pets can be appropriately diagnosed and treated using some of these modalities. Telehealth, the umbrella term, is defined as follows: “all uses of technology to deliver health information, education, or care remotely.” Telehealth can include both services that require a VCPR (veterinary-client-patient relationship) and those that don’t. The ...
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This month, millions of people observed Alcohol Awareness Month, Autism Awareness Month, Donate Life Month, Foot Health Awareness Month, Humor Month and a host of other observances to raise awareness about conditions and issues. In addition to month long commemorations, specific weeks and days focused on other illnesses and disorders. It has become commonplace to pass a billboard, open a publication or click on a website and discover a new issue in the spotlight. Awareness campaigns are designed to reach a broad audience and dispel ignorance and deepen understanding. Do they work? Unfortunately, hard scientific evidence about the impact of awareness efforts ...
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Our time is the most valuable commodity we have. Freely giving of that time for a greater purpose without expectation of something in return is the most precious gift we can offer. For those who give this gift so willingly to our Association: Thank You! The VHMA was built on the shoulders of people just like you, selfless professionals who saw something greater in our potential. While we have so many opportunities for members to contribute and volunteer, serving on the VHMA Board of Directors requires the most time and effort. While this may seem intimidating at first, I assure you the rewards far outweigh the costs. To those members who raised their hands ...
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