I am writing this letter on behalf of the VPOA (Veterinary Practice Owners Association). As practice owners we are the engine of the veterinary industry. We buy the equipment, pay the rent, order the medical supplies, hire technical staff and set clinic policy. We are the ones borrowing the money and worrying about making payroll while trying to provide a satisfying workplace environment and quality services to our clients.
Yet we have no voice to sound our concerns and no representation to advocate for us.
At this time, there are 3 major organizations representing facets of the veterinary industry in Ontario: the educators, OVC, the regulators, CVO, and the group which represents individual members’ interests, OVMA. These are all well meaning organizations and are necessary for a functional veterinary industry and our professions. Lately these organizations have been moving in their own directions and making decisions which appear to be counterproductive to running viable and successful business.
We, as a group, have little say in how this industry is run. Our busy work schedules have allowed other organizations to make these decisions for us. More and more of these decisions are made without the wellbeing of the business, or its owner, in mind.
Graduates of the Ontario Veterinary College have been reported to have little or no practical hands on clinical, surgical and business experience. They are often particularly focused on work life balance, and fail to understand the importance of providing a quality client experience, from the clients’ perspective, in return for a commensurate remuneration.
The OVMA is a very positive group of people that do a fantastic job of helping the individual veterinarian out in many ways. They have the best intentions for all veterinarians but seem to focus more on the needs of the employee than the employer.
The CVO has the important job of ensuring that veterinarians have the skills and ethics to provide services to the Ontario public, but from time to time fail to ensure that a balanced perspective is maintained in policing and punishing those who are actually negatively impacting the reputation of the profession.
The VPOA is an organization of veterinary practice owners – both large and small animals – that feel we need a say in how this industry will be structured in the future. We feel that now is the time to bring veterinary practice owners together to voice their concerns and to start addressing our needs. Without us, there will be no jobs for anyone.
At the present time the VPOA is a small organization with a lot of big ideas, but because of our small numbers we have not been taken seriously by these other organizations. What we need and what we are asking for is you to look around your practice and ask yourself if you are better off today than you were ten years ago.
I would bet your answer is “No”.
The reason for the diminished success of your practice over the past years may be directly or indirectly related to the decisions made by others who have not taken into consideration how these decisions impact you or your business.
If you feel the same way we encourage you to email with your concerns. Get involved with the VPOA and help us work with these other organizations to better veterinary medicine. Work with us to help structure the veterinary industry that will better your business and improve veterinary medicine with the well being of our clients in mind.
Please email us at [email protected]