A consensus was reached by the AVMA Executive Board during its June 6-8 meeting that the AVMA Council on Education should continue to accredit foreign veterinary schools. The discussion was prompted by a report issued recently by the AVMA Task Force on Foreign Veterinary School Accreditation (see JAVMA, June 15, 2013).
After the meeting, Dr. Jan Krehbiel, board chair, said the decision wasn’t made lightly and that board members considered comments from their constituents, but ultimately determined that the benefits outweigh the risks.
In an online message posted June 11, Dr. Krehbiel wrote: “Allowing international schools to seek accreditation and recognition according to established COE standards improves the quality of global veterinary education. With the growing focus on one health and the global community, it’s more important, now more than ever, that we foster international collaboration and communication; accreditation serves a vital function in this regard.”
For those who may not be satisfied with the board’s decision, Dr. Krehbiel told JAVMA News, “We’re happy to respond to AVMA members, but we recognize it could result in a situation where we may have to respectfully agree to disagree.”
The board held its discussion during an executive session that was closed to all but board members and senior AVMA staff. Dr. Krehbiel said the closed session allowed board members to feel comfortable expressing their opinions, resulting in a more candid discussion.
The council currently accredits 46 veterinary schools—28 in the United States, five in Canada, and 13 in other foreign countries.
To see Dr. Krehbiel’s full message about
foreign veterinary school accreditation, click here.