June 01, 2001


 Media briefings, other PR proposals approved

Posted May 15, 2001

The Executive Board authorized the AVMA to develop media briefings on bovine spongiform encephalopathy, foot-and-mouth disease, and West Nile virus. The briefings were subsequently held May 3 in the Capitol.

The USDA's top veterinary experts on FMD (Dr. Alfonso Torres), BSE (Dr. Linda Detwiler), and West Nile virus (Dr. Randy Crom) presented clear, accurate information so that these emerging diseases could be better understood. The media has sometimes confused the diseases. Staff from the AVMA Governmental Relations Division discussed resources needed to prevent or contain potential outbreaks. The briefings also covered the economic impact of each disease.

Members of the press were encouraged to come to the AVMA for information on these and all animal health-related issues.

Also in the area of public relations, the Executive Board authorized expending $75,000 from AVMA reserves in 2001 toward production of the new image/career video the board approved last fall to replace the 12-year-old "Veterinary Medicine—Caring for the Future." The allocation will enable production to begin this year. The total production budget for the video is $296,500.

The board approved presenting an AVMA Explorer Award to Noelle Bonjour, Clarinda, Iowa. Through Exploring and 4-H Club, Ms. Bonjour has completed projects dealing with animal care and health, and feels called to a career in veterinary medicine. This award, which consists of $500 and a plaque, has been given 10 times since it was begun in 1988.