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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To characterize how class rank and other criteria are used to evaluate applicants for veterinary internship and residency positions.

SAMPLE

Program directors for 572 internship and residency programs.

PROCEDURES

A survey was sent to program directors asking them to score the importance of 7 items (cover letter, letters of reference, curriculum vitae, veterinary class rank, grade point average, grades for classes specifically related to the internship or residency specialty area, and interview) they could use in evaluating applicants for an internship or residency and to rank those 7 items, along with an open item asking participants to list other criteria they used, from most to least important.

RESULTS

Responses were obtained for 195 internship and 222 residency programs. For both internship programs and residency programs, mean importance scores assigned to the 7 items resulted in the same ordering from most to least important, with letters of reference, interview, curriculum vitae, and cover letter most important. Rankings of the importance of the 7 items, along with an “other” item, were similar for internship and residency programs; the most important item was a candidate's letters of reference, followed by the interview, cover letter, and curriculum vitae.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Results suggested that although most veterinary internship and residency programs consider class rank and overall grade point average when evaluating applicants, these 2 items were not the most important. For both internship and residency programs, the most important items were an applicant's letters of reference, followed by the interview, cover letter, and curriculum vitae.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Widespread use of antimicrobials in human and veterinary medicine drives the emergence and dissemination of resistant bacteria in human, animal, and environmental reservoirs. The AVMA and FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine have both taken public positions emphasizing the importance of incorporating antimicrobial stewardship in veterinary clinical settings; however, a model for implementing a comprehensive antimicrobial stewardship program in veterinary practice is not readily available.

In 2015, The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine began developing a veterinary antimicrobial stewardship program modeled on existing programs in human health-care institutions and the 7 core elements of a successful hospital antimicrobial stewardship program, as defined by the CDC. The program includes comprehensive antimicrobial use guidelines, active environmental surveillance, and enhanced infection control procedures in The Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center, along with routine monitoring and reporting of antimicrobial prescribing practices and antimicrobial susceptibility patterns of common pathogens isolated from patients and the hospital environment. Finally, programs have been developed to educate clinicians, staff, and students on antimicrobial resistance and appropriate antimicrobial prescribing practices.

The antimicrobial stewardship program has been designed to help clinicians and students confidently make judicious antimicrobial use decisions and provide them with actionable steps that can help them act as strong stewards while providing the best care for their patients. This report describes our program and the process involved in developing it, with the intent that the program could serve as a potential model for other veterinary medical institutions.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To assess the readability of pet obesity information, document the presence and absence of types of pet obesity information, and perform comparisons between dog and cat obesity information content on websites.

SAMPLE

68 websites containing pet obesity content.

PROCEDURES

Websites were systematically retrieved with a search engine and predefined search terms and phrases. For each website, pet obesity information was scored by use of 2 established readability tools: the simple measure of gobbledygook (SMOG) index and Flesch-Kincaid (FK) readability test. A directed content analysis was conducted with a codebook that assessed the presence or absence of 103 variables across 5 main topics related to pet obesity on each website.

RESULTS

The mean reading grade levels determined with the SMOG index and FK readability test were 16.61 and 9.07, respectively. Instructions for weight measurement and body condition scoring were found infrequently, as were nonmodifiable risk factors. There was a greater focus on addressing obesity through dietary changes than through increasing physical activity. Few websites recommended regular follow-up appointments with veterinarians. Weight management information and the emphasis on owners’ commitment to achieve their pet's weight loss targets differed among dog- and cat-focused websites.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Results indicated that pet obesity information on the studied websites was largely inaccessible to pet owners owing to the associated high reading grade levels. Readers of that information would benefit from clarification of information gaps along with provision of guidance regarding navigating online information and counseling on the importance of nutritional and dietary reassessments for individual pets performed by veterinarians.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

The USDA continues to consider and implement regulatory pathways for evolving scenarios, needs, and technologies. The intent of this report is to make veterinarians and other users of veterinary biologics aware of recent regulatory additions and changes, particularly in the area of veterinary vaccines. These include new licensure pathways to increase product availability, standardization of labeling, and increased transparency regarding adverse event reports and the efficacy and safety studies accepted by the USDA for product licensure. This report did not undergo scientific peer review.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To investigate the association of demographic, career, and lifestyle factors with resilience and the association of resilience with mental health outcomes in Canadian veterinarians.

SAMPLE

1,130 veterinarians in clinical practice across Canada.

PROCEDURES

An online questionnaire was used to collect participant data and included 5 validated psychometric scales to evaluate resilience (through the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale [CD-RISC]), perceived stress (through the Perceived Stress Scale), emotional distress (through the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale), burnout (through the Maslach Burnout Inventory), and secondary traumatic stress (through the Professional Quality of Life Scale). A multivariable linear regression model was used to investigate associations between CD-RISC scores and demographic, career, and lifestyle characteristics. Univariable linear regression models were used to assess the relationship between resilience scores and other mental health outcomes.

RESULTS

The strongest positive association was between CD-RISC score and overall health. The level of satisfaction with support from friends and workplace resources had positive associations with the CD-RISC score. The presence of mental illness had the strongest negative association with the CD-RISC score. Being married, working in a small animal practice, or having an associate role were negatively associated with the CD-RISC score. The CD-RISC score had negative associations with scores for perceived stress, anxiety, depression, burnout, and secondary traumatic stress.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Models provided evidence for the role of resilience in protecting against negative mental health outcomes in veterinarians. Both personal and workplace factors were associated with resilience, presenting opportunities for intervention at each of these levels.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Authors and

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To identify a method for developing antibiograms for use in companion animal private practices (PPs).

SAMPLES

Reports (n = 532) of aerobic bacterial culture and antimicrobial susceptibility testing performed between January 1, 2018, and December 31, 2018, at 11 PPs and 1 academic primary care practice (APCP).

PROCEDURES

Data extracted from reports included patient identification number, laboratory accession number, patient signalment, collection method, body site, and results of bacterial culture and antimicrobial susceptibility testing. A custom antibiogram was then constructed with the help of commonly available software by adapting methods used by human hospitals. Susceptibility patterns of bacteria isolated by PPs and the APCP were compared to identify challenges associated with collating data from multiple laboratories.

RESULTS

4 bacterial species (Escherichia coli, Proteus mirabilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus pseudintermedius) and 3 bacterial groups (Enterobacteriaceae, Enterococcus spp, and coagulase-positive Staphylococcus spp) met the minimum requirement of ≥ 15 isolates for construction of an antibiogram. For urine samples, 3 bacterial species and 2 bacterial groups met the minimum requirement of ≥ 10 isolates. For samples from skin, 2 bacterial species and 2 bacterial groups met the minimum requirement of ≥ 10 isolates. Patient signalment, sample source, and distribution of bacterial isolates were similar between PP and APCP patients.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Results demonstrated that it was feasible to adapt existing guidelines for developing antibiograms in human medicine to the veterinary outpatient setting. Use of antibiograms could aid in empirical antimicrobial drug selection in a manner that supports antimicrobial stewardship principles.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Iowa leads the United States in pork production, housing approximately one-third of the country's swine population. This puts Iowa at great economic risk if an outbreak of African swine fever, a disease that limits international trade opportunities, were to occur anywhere in the United States. To hone emergency response plans to combat an outbreak, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship in September 2019 participated in a 4-day exercise with representatives from the other 13 top pork-producing states. This exercise involved a mock foreign animal disease response and helped to concisely summarize what pork producers could expect should a foreign animal disease be detected in Iowa.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To investigate job satisfaction and engagement among credentialed veterinary technicians (CVTs) employed in the United States.

SAMPLE

873 CVTs who responded to an internet-based survey in 2017.

PROCEDURES

A survey was conducted to collect information on demographics, individual engagement, and job satisfaction among a convenience sample of CVTs in the United States. Only responses from those employed in small animal practice were included. Demographic and job-related factors were evaluated for associations with individual engagement and job satisfaction.

RESULTS

The mean (SD) score for overall individual engagement (7-point Likert scale, with 7 representing strong engagement) was 4.9 (1.0) and for job satisfaction (7 representing extreme satisfaction) was 5.4 (1.5). Factors associated with lower individual engagement and lower job satisfaction included most frequently working overnight shifts and having more veterinarians in the respondent's practice, whereas holding a supervisory role, receiving a higher hourly wage, and having more veterinary technicians in the practice were significantly associated with higher individual engagement and higher job satisfaction, with other variables held constant. Having a veterinary technician specialist designation was not associated with individual engagement or job satisfaction.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

To the authors’ knowledge, this was the first study to investigate factors associated with individual engagement and job satisfaction among CVTs in the United States. Employers should review these factors and support and enhance those associated with enhanced engagement and increased job satisfaction. Employers should regularly review factors identified as negatively associated with job satisfaction and engagement and do their best to mitigate them.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare the prevalence of negative mental health outcomes among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and asexual (LGBTQ+) veterinary professionals and students with the prevalence reported in a previous study of veterinarians; compare LGBTQ+ veterinary professionals and students in regard to access to LGBTQ+ policies and resources, workplace or school climate, and identity disclosure; and examine whether these variables were associated with mental health (eg, psychological distress) or work- and school-related (eg, emotional labor) outcomes.

SAMPLE

440 LGBTQ+ veterinary professionals and students in the United States and United Kingdom.

PROCEDURES

Between July and December 2016, a web-based questionnaire was distributed through email messages to members of LGBTQ+ veterinary groups and announcements at general veterinary and LGBTQ+-focused conferences and in newsletters.

RESULTS

Nonheterosexual cis men, nonheterosexual cis women, and transgender and nonbinary individuals all had higher lifetime prevalences of suicidal ideation and attempted suicide, compared with previously reported prevalences for male and female veterinarians in general. Professionals reported more welcoming climates than did students (eg, lower frequency of exposure to homophobic language and more supportive environments) and greater identity disclosure; however, students reported greater access to institutional resources and policies. Climate variables had a more robust relationship with negative outcomes than did access to LGBTQ+ policies or identity disclosure variables.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Comparatively high rates of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among LGBTQ+ professionals and students and the relationship between climate variables and negative mental health outcomes suggested enhanced efforts are needed to improve the climates in veterinary workplaces and colleges.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare the salaries of certified veterinary technicians with an associate's degree to those with a bachelor's or a master's degree.

SAMPLE

1,289 credentialed veterinary technicians in the United States.

PROCEDURES

Credentialed veterinary technicians were asked to complete an online questionnaire in the fall of 2018 administered by veterinary technician associations and accredited veterinary technology institutions. Additional links to the survey were published on various social media sources.

RESULTS

Mean ± SD hourly pay rate for all respondents was $20.24 ± 6.33. Weighted mean pay rate for those with an associate's degree was $19.93, with a bachelor's degree was $22.37, and with a master's degree was $27.55. Factors positively influencing veterinary technician salary were years of experience as a licensed veterinary technician, level of education, gender, veterinary technician specialist certification, and years worked for current employer.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Years of experience as a licensed veterinary technician, level of education, gender, veterinary technician specialist certification, and years with current employer affected pay rate for credentialed veterinary technicians in the United States.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association