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June 01, 2020

AVMA Board gets down to business, virtually

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In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting social-distancing rules, the AVMA Board of Directors held its April 17 meeting virtually rather than in person.

Board members spent much of the time discussing the novel coronavirus, its impacts on the veterinary profession, and how the virus might reshape the profession in the future. The agenda for the business portion of the meeting was relatively light, consisting mostly of reaffirming and updating policies and making committee appointments.

The Board did approve a plan to pursue a five-city rotation for the AVMA Convention to comprise Boston, Chicago, Denver, San Diego, and Washington, D.C., starting in 2027.

As the Convention and Meeting Planning Division explained in its proposal to the Board, a review of convention attendance numbers over the past 15 years showed these cities had the highest attendance numbers and attendee satisfaction scores. Moreover, each city is able to accommodate the Association’s meeting needs in terms of convention center space and hotels.

“As pricing increases year after year, controlling costs becomes an increasing focus. With more frequency of returning to these cities on a regular basis, it will enhance our opportunity to receive better pricing as well as receiving more favorable dates for our members,” the recommendation stated.

During an April 30 meeting, the Board canceled AVMA Convention 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic (see story). The convention is scheduled to be in Minneapolis in 2021; Philadelphia in 2022; Denver in 2023; Washington, D.C., in 2025; and Anaheim, California, in 2026.

During the April 17 meeting, the Board also voted in favor of providing in-kind support to assist the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology with releasing and disseminating the paper “The Impact of Recruitment and Retention of Food Animal Veterinarians on the U.S. Food Supply.” (PDF)

CAST is a nonprofit organization that communicates the science behind food and agricultural issues with input from the scientific and legal community, as well as summarizes the latest scientific research for policymakers, the media, the private sector, and the public.

The paper is intended to educate and inspire readers to help reverse a decline in the country’s supply of food animal veterinarians, who are critical to ensuring the future of a safe, nutritious, and humanely raised U.S. food supply, according to the recommendation background.

CAST wants to put this paper in front of as many key influencers and decision-makers as possible in agriculture, government, academia, policy groups, and the media.