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Sharon Granskog
Phone: 847-285-6619
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

  10/20/2017

 AVMA, AAVMC and AAVSB agree on Telehealth statement

​The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) and the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) agree on a statement issued by the AVMA/AAVMC Joint Committee regarding telehealth and veterinary medicine.

“As the veterinary profession’s ‘umbrella’ organization, the AVMA understands that collaboration with veterinary regulatory/licensing boards and veterinary medical colleges is essential to help veterinarians take full advantage of new technologies in ways that best support the health and well-being of their patients,” said Dr. Mike Topper, president of the AVMA.

The statement reads:

Telehealth can provide valuable tools to augment the delivery and availability of high quality veterinary care. According to the Center for Connected Health Policy, “Telehealth encompasses a broad variety of technologies and tactics to deliver virtual medical, health, and education services. Telehealth is not a specific service, but a collection of means to enhance care and education delivery.” Veterinarians need to utilize emerging technologies to enhance accessibility and client communication, while promoting the responsible provision of high quality veterinary medical care. Both AVMA and AAVMC are committed to continue their collaboration with a wide variety of stakeholders to promote access to the convenience and benefits of telehealth, while providing information to the veterinary community about the development of applications and other technologies that help connect veterinarians with clients.

“Telehealth has the potential to transform how the veterinary medical profession serves people and animals,” said AAVMC CEO Dr. Andrew T. Maccabe. “The educational community needs to make sure new generations of veterinarians are prepared to leverage the technology. We are especially pleased to be working with the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Association of Veterinary State Boards in this rapidly emerging area to ensure that telehealth is used appropriately to improve veterinary medical services in the future.”

Collaboration among individual veterinarians, educational institutions, and the state and federal regulatory communities provides the breadth of understanding necessary for successful implementation of telehealth technologies in ways that support veterinary health care providers, their clients, and—most importantly—the wellbeing of their patients. 

“Telehealth, when used within the confines of state, territorial, provincial, and federal regulations, can provide valuable tools to augment the delivery and availability of high quality veterinary care, said AAVSB President, Dr. Mark Olson. The AAVSB is drafting model regulations and will continue to provide education to support our member regulatory boards on the use of emerging technologies in telehealth and how these innovations could enhance veterinary care.” See the full memo of support from the AAVSB.

As outlined in the joint statement, there will be continued outreach to additional stakeholders in veterinary medicine to discuss further collaboration on telehealth. 

The AVMA is developing an extensive and practical toolkit and guidelines for members who are interested in using telemedicine in practice. It will include information on policies, laws, and regulations; potential applications; an FAQ; descriptions of various service models; and guidance on monetization. The toolkit is tentatively set to be unveiled at the 2018 AVMA Convention. 

Visit the AVMA website to read and comment on the new AVMA policy on telemedicine and the AVMA Practice Advisory Panel’s entire 42-page document, Final Report on Telemedicine.

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