Privacy policy

Last updated September 18, 2018

Changes to the privacy policy
Collection and use of information

Information shared with third parties

Manage your privacy

Your rights

Information security
Data accuracy and retention
Cookies and other tracking technologies
Children's privacy
Advertisements and external links
Additional policies
Contact us


The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is committed to individual privacy and protecting your personal information. This policy provides information on how we collect, use, share, secure and store your information when you visit our website or use our services.

Please take a moment to familiarize yourself with our privacy practices and know that you can contact us if you have any questions or concerns about privacy.

To help you understand this policy, know that:

  • the terms "we," "our" and "AVMA" refers to the American Veterinary Medical Association;
  • the terms "you" and "user(s)" refers to a person or entity that uses a website, application or Service;
  • the term "Personal Information" refers to information that identifies or can be used to identify a person, indirectly or directly, including, but not limited to first and/or last name, email address, gender, phone number, address, date of birth or other demographic information;
  • the term "Non-Personal Information" refers to information that, on its own, does not directly associate with a specific individual;
  • the term "System(s)" refers to websites, applications or systems that are owned, operated and/or managed by or for AVMA;
  • the term "Service(s)" refers to the services and products that are offered through our Systems—made available either at a cost or for free—including, but not limited to, AVMA membership, event registration, AVMA Store products, email newsletter subscriptions, journals, webinars, webpages, interactive tools, applications, widgets, content, blogs, social networks, or other online, mobile, or wireless offerings that post a link to the AVMA Privacy Policy, whether accessed via computer, mobile device, or other technology.

The AVMA Privacy Policy is reflective of any data that we have collected or will collect, whether it is provided directly or indirectly from you, as outlined by our Terms of Use.

Changes to the privacy policy

The AVMA reserves the right to change, modify, add or remove portions of this Privacy Policy at its discretion. Whenever we make material changes to this Privacy Policy, however, we will communicate policy updates and their effective dates by either posting a notice on or sending you an email. If you continue to use any of our Systems after a policy change, it means that you accept this Privacy Policy.

Collection and use of information

The AVMA collects and uses information, both personal and non-personal, that helps us provide our Services and products to you. We may request your consent before using your Personal information where required by applicable law.

Information sources

The AVMA collects information in three ways: information you provide to us, automatically through operating our Services, and from third parties.

  • Self-reported: Individuals provide the AVMA with information through applications, surveys, web forms, and updates made by phone, email, or
  • Use of services: Anonymous information automatically collected about how individuals use our Services.
  • Third parties: Organizations provide the AVMA with information about individuals or other organizations that is either publicly available, shared or purchased, and it is used to update, expand and analyze our records. The AVMA also receives and uses information from our family organizations (see full list) that facilitate membership services and provide benefits to members.

Personal information

When we are provided with information that can be used to identify a person, either directly or indirectly, this information is deemed "Personal Information."

Personal Information we may collect:
  • Name (first name, middle name, last name, second last name, former/maiden name, prefix, suffix)
  • Spouse name
  • Biological sex and gender
  • Ethnicity
  • Date and place of birth
  • Mailing address
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • Education information
  • Employment information
  • Professional information
  • Salary information
  • Participation with AVMA family organizations
  • Website interests
  • Subscription preferences
  • Social media account information and content
  • Event attendance information
  • ADA accommodations
  • Marketing preferences
  • Marketing metadata and segmentation
  • Survey responses
  • Limited financial account information

Only for ECFVG applications from graduates of foreign, non-accredited veterinary schools:

  • Physical characteristics (height, weight, hair color, eye color)
  • Citizenship and immigration status

For staff and contractors only:

  • Social Security number and/or tax ID number

Personal information may be used to:

  • Establish an AVMA or SAVMA membership
  • Create a web account
  • Process transactions and purchases of products or Services
  • Send informational communications by email and physical mail
  • Maintain membership records
  • Conduct subscription audits
  • Fulfill your requests for information
  • Enable access to online communities
  • Conduct research or statistical analysis
  • Send email updates, alerts and newsletters
  • Enable the use of certain features of our Services
  • Personalize your website or event experience
  • Distribute attendee lists
  • Provide customer service
  • Send promotional emails
  • Enable voting for AVMA district directors
  • Qualify for volunteer opportunities
  • Manage and process job and externship applications
  • Process financial/tax transactions

Non-personal information

Depending on which Services you use, we may also collect information that isn't attached to an individual and can't be used to identify an individual, also known as "Non-personal information."

Non-personal information we may collect:
  • Language settings
  • Device information (e.g. desktop computer, tablet, mobile)
  • Technology specifications (e.g. operating system, web browser)
  • Web session information (e.g. date/time, time zone, pages visited, session duration, website referral information, marketing campaign information, actions taken during the session)
  • Search queries
  • Unique device identifier
  • Referrer URL
  • Location information

Non-Personal Information may be used to:

  • Improve user experience for web platforms and content
  • Help us understand trends and utilization of Services
  • Report on page views and content downloads

Information shared with third parties

At times, the AVMA may provide limited Personal or Non-Personal Information to third-party organizations. The following describes the types of organizations with which information might be shared and processed. We may request your consent before using your Personal information where required by applicable law.

Organization category


Membership services*

Organizations that help AVMA process or deliver core member services and products, such as manage membership, send reminders or account notifications, distribute journal subscriptions and send AVMA election ballots.


AVMA uses financial services that help process payments, renewals, purchases and receipts.

AVMA family organizations*

Provide valuable products and services to AVMA and SAVMA members, such as professional liability and life insurance, or contact AVMA and SAVMA members about volunteering, participation and contribution opportunities. These organizations include: American Veterinary Medical Foundation, AVMA LIFE Trust, AVMA Professional Liability Insurance Trust, AVMA PAC and Student AVMA.

Advertising platforms

Organizations that provide channels that deliver general or targeted advertisements for informational or commercial purposes.
Examples: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn

Affinity program services

Contracted organizations that offer AVMA members access to special discounts on products and services.
Examples: AVMA Member Edge program providers

Allied organizations

Veterinary organizations with specific vocational interests, allied to the interests of the AVMA, that send informational updates about their work to AVMA members.
Examples: State VMAs, AAEP, AABP

AVMA digital platforms

Personal Information may be shared with fellow AVMA members and volunteers through digital platforms, such as the AVMA Member Directory, online forums and comments.

Event support

Contracted organizations that support AVMA by delivering services to attendees of AVMA events—such as conferences, summits, symposia, webinars and the AVMA Convention—to assist with event registration, accommodations and event-related deliverables.

Informational subscriptions

Organizations that assist in sending updates to subscribers about the veterinary profession, veterinary medicine, news and alerts.
Example: AVMA Animal Health SmartBrief

Marketing and promotion

Organizations that either help AVMA deliver or independently send marketing or promotional materials about services, products, special offers and events.
Example: Promoting the AVMA Convention and other events

Surveys, research and analysis

Organizations that provide services for the collection and/or analysis of data, which helps the AVMA understand satisfaction of AVMA membership, products and areas of veterinary economics.
Example: Pet Demographic Study, post-event survey

*Essential for member processing

You can change your privacy settings to opt in or opt out of AVMA's optional disclosure to these third parties. It may take up to 30 days for these changes to take effect, but we will let you know if it will take longer and the reasons for the extended time.


We do not share your email addresses with third-party organizations, except in the following circumstances:

  • if AVMA has received your consent; or
  • if needed to provide Services for the AVMA, such as sending emails from AVMA through a third-party vendor; or
  • if the AVMA Executive Vice President, using his/her discretion, deems it appropriate to share your email address with certain related organizations, such as AVMA LIFE, the AVMA Professional Liability Insurance Trust or constituent and allied veterinary medical organizations represented in the AVMA House of Delegates.

We sometimes collect specific information on email responses, such as how many recipients open an email or click links provided in an email message. This information is used solely within the AVMA to analyze areas of interest and to enhance our products, services and AVMA websites. None of this information is sold or distributed outside the AVMA.


If you subscribe to, register for, order or purchase a Service through our website, the payment information you submit, if any, is collected and used by payment processors that we partner with, and used by them in accordance with their privacy policies. The AVMA may store limited financial account information which we require for internal record keeping.

Member directory

The AVMA Member Directory contains specific Personal Information that you provide on your AVMA membership application or through your online profile. Access to the AVMA Member Directory is available only to AVMA members, SAVMA members, AVMA staff and executive directors of state and allied organizations.

AVMA members have the choice to make the following information available to other members through the Member Directory:

  • Name
  • Location information (home or business address)
  • Contact information (phone, email)
  • Veterinary medical education
  • Professional and practice information
  • Membership information

Visit your profile to review and adjust your contact information or modify what is shared on the AVMA Member Directory.

Legal requests

The AVMA may disclose information, including Personal Information, where required by law or to comply with valid legal processes, such as a search warrant, subpoena or court order.

Manage your privacy

You can control what information you share with AVMA and how it is used. Please contact us if you have any questions related to your information.

Privacy settings

Review and adjust your privacy settings to change how the AVMA shares your personal information with third-party organizations. It may take 30 days for these changes to take effect, but we will let you know if it will take longer and the reasons for the extended time.

Email subscriptions

You can manage your email subscriptions to subscribe or opt-out of our newsletters. To unsubscribe from a particular mailing you have received, follow the unsubscribe instructions included in that email's footer.

Personal and contact information

You are encouraged to verify your personal and contact information for accuracy.

Member directory

AVMA members can manage the contact information that is shared and available through the AVMA Member Directory.

Cookies and other technologies

To limit or completely disable cookies and other technologies, refer to your browser's documentation. Read more about how we use cookies.

Your rights

Request to review, modify and delete personal information

You can contact us to request a downloadable copy of your Personal Information to review it for inaccuracies, modify it to make corrections, and/or delete if it is not necessary for legitimate business purposes. We reserve the right to decline requests that we believe to be unauthentic or unlawful.

The AVMA uses your Personal Information for activities that are considered required to maintain an AVMA membership. You have the right to request that all required processing be discontinued, thereby forfeiting your AVMA membership and removing all of your Personal Information. Learn about other ways you can manage your privacy.

Submit a complaint

To submit a complaint related to privacy matters, please contact the AVMA Data Protection Officer.

European law

Data protection law in Europe requires a lawful basis for collecting and retaining Personal Information. Our lawful bases include:

  • Consent: The AVMA received your consent to use your Personal Information as described by our Terms of Service.
  • Contractual obligations: In certain circumstances, we need your personal data to comply with our contractual obligation to deliver the Services or ship products that you purchase from AVMA.
  • Legal compliance: In some cases, such as financial transactions and taxes, we are required by law to collect, use and retain some data for our records.
  • Legitimate interests: We have legitimate business interests to use your Personal Information in ways that are expected to deliver our Services.

Information security

The AVMA takes your privacy and data security very seriously. We take appropriate measures to protect Personal Information entrusted to us from unauthorized access, use, and disclosure. These measures include, but are not limited to:

  • employing up-to-date technology and security; and
  • establishing privacy protection controls through contractual obligations for third-party engagements; and
  • enforcing policies that hold AVMA employees accountable to maintain the confidentiality of personally-identifiable information, subject to disciplinary action for any breach, up to and including employee termination.

Unfortunately, the Internet cannot be guaranteed to be 100% secure and the AVMA cannot guarantee or warrant the security of any personal or Non-Personal Information you provide to us. In the event that Personal Information is compromised by a breach of security, the AVMA will promptly notify all affected individuals in compliance with applicable law.

Data accuracy and retention

We do our best to make sure your Personal Information is accurate and up to date. Since most Personal Information is self-reported, we rely on you to provide us with the most current information. We ask that you frequently visit your profile, review your Personal Information for accuracy and make corrections as needed.

The AVMA will retain Personal and Non-Personal Information for as long as needed to provide our Services. This information may also be retained in order to comply with legal requests, honor opt-out preferences, resolve disputes, prevent abuse and enforce existing agreements.

Cookies and other tracking technologies

Like many organizations, AVMA uses automatic data collection tools, such as "cookies," embedded links and web beacons. These tools help provide you with personalized web experiences and provide us with insights on usage that help us determine the effectiveness of our offerings.

There are four categories of cookies that are used on our websites:

  • Essential – cookies that are necessary for the Service to be delivered, rendered and/or function
  • Performance – assist with the performance of the Services
  • Analytics – cookies that provide insights into use of the Services
  • Marketing – cookies that help understand utilization and effectiveness of communications and marketing campaigns

If you wish to disable cookies, refer to your web browser's documentation. By disabling cookies, you may inhibit certain features of our Services from being accessible or functioning properly.

Children's privacy

We do not knowingly collect data from or market to children under the age of 16. If you believe that we may have collected Personal Information from someone under the applicable age of consent in your country without proper consent, please contact us and will work to investigate and address the issue.

If you are a child under 16 years of age, you are not permitted to use the Service and should not send any information about yourself to us through the Service.

Advertisements and external links

Some AVMA Services (e.g. websites, newsletters, social media) may contain informational or commercial advertisements (or) links to external websites or networks. We do not control the websites or networks of third parties provided through links on AVMA Services or their information collection and privacy practices. The AVMA is not responsible for the accuracy of information or privacy practices employed by any websites or services linked from AVMA's Services. We encourage you to review the Terms of Use and Privacy Policies of all websites you visit.

Additional policies

In addition to this policy, the AVMA has other policies that you are encouraged to read.

Contact us

Your privacy is important to the AVMA. If you have any questions about this policy, your Personal Information or our privacy practices, or if you would like to make a complaint about a possible policy issue, you can email us at avmaonlineatavma [dot] org (privacy[at]avma[dot]org), call us at 800-248-2862 or write to us at:

Attn: Data Protection Officer
American Veterinary Medical Association
1931 N. Meacham Road, Suite 100
Schaumburg, IL 60173-4360
United States of America