AVMA VMAT FAQ for States

Who:

The American Veterinary Medical Association has re-launched the Veterinary Medical Assistance Team program as a private non governmental program. The teams are funded by the American Veterinary Medical Foundation.

What:

States may request one of three offerings:

  1. A 4-6 person early assessment team (of veterinarians and veterinary technicians) for 72 hours on the ground
  2. A 4-6 person basic treatment team (of veterinarians and veterinary technicians) for 5 days on the ground
  3. An individual VMAT volunteer to present a lecture (typically 60-90 minutes long) on a relevant emergency preparedness and response topic

When:

The AVMA VMAT program is not meant to replace state and local response teams. AVMA VMAT is intended to support local response efforts by filling gaps or providing surge capacity.

Why:

While many states have developed veterinary and animal response teams, many gaps remain.

  1. The early assessment teams may be used as a resource by the state to determine which of their own state assets to deploy in a response.
  2. The basic treatment teams may be used as surge capacity for state response teams or to fill gaps providing basic veterinary care at state run animal disaster operations.
  3. The AVMA VMAT program has over 15 years of emergency preparedness and response experience, including deployments to the World Trade Center and the hurricanes of 2005. Team members have first hand knowledge of response to multiple events and have received extensive training in preparedness and response. In addition, several team members are board certified specialists and many members have extensive training and experience in areas such as safety, administration, mental health, and logistics.

Who Pays:

AVMA VMAT members are volunteers and do not receive a salary. Travel, housing and per diem expenses are covered by the AVMA VMAT program through AVMF funding.

How:

Before a VMAT can be deployed, a signed Memorandum of Understanding between the AVMA and the state animal health authority must be on file with the AVMA.

Where:

Additional information about the AVMA VMAT program can be found at www.avma.org/vmat or e-mail us.