Relationship of AVMA-Recognized Veterinary Specialty Organizations with Veterinary Specialty Organizations in Other Parts of the World

Comment on this policy

The AVMA American Board of Veterinary Specialties (ABVS) encourages collaboration between its recognized veterinary specialty organizations (AVMA-RVSO) and veterinary specialty organizations (VSO) such as organizations certifying veterinary discipline specialist status in Europe, Australasia and elsewhere. The ABVS recognizes that regional and continental veterinary specialist certification will continue to develop, as advanced veterinary medical services become established in other parts of the world. Contact and collaboration with specialist colleagues and organizations outside North America will lead to improvements in animal health worldwide.

Historically, AVMA-approved discipline-specialist colleges have often been the model and source of precedent and experience for individuals establishing VSOs outside North America. Procedures established by non-North American VSOs often are 'borrowed' from AVMA-RVSO documents. The ABVS encourages its RVSOs to provide this kind of support when requested and practical. In order to avoid an implication of reciprocity, ABVS recommends that the AVMA-RVSO inform the receiving VSO that the documents are provided subject to the understanding that, if used by the receiving VSO, they are to be identified as documents of the receiving VSO.

Full Reciprocity

Due to differences in requirements and standards, and differences in the way in which the discipline specialty is practiced in different areas of the world, full reciprocity between an AVMA-RSVO is discouraged unless there has been an extensive history of collaboration in policies and standards in training, credentials review, and examination procedures between the two specialty organizations. The ABVS will require detailed justification from an AVMA-RVSO before it accepts full reciprocity between an AVMA-RVSO and another VSO.

Reciprocity of Parts of a Training Program

The ABVS recommends that AVMA-RVSOs consider the following issues prior to accepting items in a training program supervised by a sister VSO as meeting the standards of the AVMA-RVSO:

  • the form and extent of the training required by the other VSO.
  • the standards used by the other VSO in assessing the training activity.
  • the qualifications of individuals supervising the training approved by the other VSO.

This limited reciprocity is to be reviewed and approved by the AVMA-RVSO on a case-by-case basis.

Supervision of Training in an AVMA-RVSO-approved Program

Training designed to meet the requirements and standards of an AVMA-RVSO may be supervised by a non-AVMA-RVSO diplomate, provided that the training activity and supervisor are approved by the AVMA-RVSO.