New data offer deeper insight into COVID-19 impact on practices

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Responding to COVID-19


New data provide greater detail on how veterinary practices have been affected by and responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. Anyone in the veterinary community can explore this data in the AVMA’s interactive dashboard, as well as download an in-depth report with analysis and insights from AVMA economists.

Compiled from two large surveys of veterinary practices, the dashboard now aggregates more than 3,500 responses to questions covering operational changes, client numbers, use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies, financial impact, and other topics.

The dashboard is a practical tool, providing crucial insight into the ways individual practices have responded to the pandemic—financially, operationally, and otherwise. Practice owners and managers can use it to see how other practices have adapted and identify new strategies to address the ongoing challenges of practicing during the pandemic. Drill down for detailed information on specific questions and delve into your areas of interest.

In-depth analysis helps practices prepare

AVMA economists also performed a detailed analysis of the survey results, focusing on four key areas: overall COVID-19 impact, operating hours, cash shortfalls, and productivity. Insights derived from that analysis are contained in a new report available free of charge to the profession. The report includes a look at strategic responses to COVID-19 and how practices have adapted to their new environment, even as it continued to change.

Here are some key takeaways:

  • Since the impacts of COVID-19 vary by geography and over time, it’s important to have strategies ready for different scenarios (for example, both reduced and increased client traffic).
  • A continuous flow of reliable information from trusted sources can help veterinarians implement best practices and alleviate client and employee concerns.
  • Telemedicine (consistent with state and federal requirements) can be a useful tool to help practices optimize operating hours both in person and virtually.
  • Practices should try to keep a staff-to-DVM ratio that maximizes labor utilization. Research has shown that the optimal technician-to-DVM ratio is about 3.2:1, depending on practice size.

More tools to support you in the pandemic

Visit AVMA’s COVID-19 resource center to access a full range of COVID-19 tools and resources, all available free of charge. Download the new COVID-19: Meeting the challenge ebook, find information about COVID-19 vaccination, and much more.

To stay updated on the latest information related to COVID-19, follow AVMA on social media, here on this blog, and by subscribing to the many email newsletters available to AVMA members.


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