FVMA Advocate Issue 2, 2020

Page 1


FVMA 2020 Annual Award Honorees & Installation of Officers |

Pg. 10

Protecting the Veterinary Profession During the COVID-19 Pandemic |

Pg. 16

President's Message Greetings colleagues,

7207 Monetary Drive Orlando, Florida 32809 Phone – 407.851.3862 Toll-free – 800.992.3862 Fax – 407.240.3710 info@fvma.org | www.fvma.org


Dr. Mary Smart President Dr. Marta P. Lista President-elect Dr. Donald H. Morgan Treasurer Dr. Michael Epperson Past President Mr. Philip J. Hinkle Executive Director

DISTRICT REPRESENTATIVES Dr. Scott Richardson District 1–Big Bend Dr. Thomas E. Hester District 2–Northeast Dr. Todd Fulton District 3–Central Dr. Donald S. Howell District 4–Tampa Bay Dr. Susan M. Carastro District 5–Treasure Coast Dr. Robert L. Swinger District 6–South Florida Dr. Barbara Lewis District 7–Southwest Dr. John R. Wight District 8–Northwest

As your new president, my tenure has had an unexpectedly vigorous start. We are certainly in uncharted times with the COVID-19 pandemic. I have counted my blessings every day to be surrounded and supported by our profession, our FVMA, and my friends and colleagues. The FVMA's executive director, Mr. Phil Hinkle, and his staff have labored tirelessly to keep veterinarians safe and working in these tenuous times. Mr. Hinkle is communicating with AVMA leadership, state legislators, local chapters, surrounding state VMAs and the Board of Veterinary Medicine. He is setting an exemplary standard for the coordination of information and its dissemination to all of you, our valued members. Mr. Hinkle’s wife, Janet, has put in volunteer hours that match every hour of her husband’s. Mr. Hinkle’s right hand, Ms. Ann Wade, has been working fervently as well. Please remember all of our colleagues at the FVMA's headquarters as the days and weeks go by! They are keeping our association and our profession afloat. A most sincere shout-out to them! Thank you from all the veterinarians in Florida! Phil Hinkle – Executive Director Ann Wade – Deputy Executive Director Jim Naugle – Associate Deputy Executive Director Tiffany Stewart – Director of Finance Brandon Wilson – Director of Membership & Certification Jason Smith – Membership Services Representative Erica Tomberlin – Membership Services Representative Cyndi Whittaker – Meetings & Events Planner Natalie Schol – Meetings & Events Planner Alssa Mathews – Multimedia Art & Design Director Katie Pearce – Content & Engagement Specialist After I took my oath of office as president, I spoke to you at our FVMA Annual Awards and said: “We have an extraordinary profession.” I hold this sentiment in the depths of my heart. Little did I know this premise would be tested to great lengths with this current world crisis. However, my view of our extraordinary profession has not diminished one bit. Clearly, we are all working to navigate the daily hurdles we now face, but despite these challenges, we are helping each other, sharing needed scientific and procedural information, reaching out to each other, and finding ways to make each other smile.

Dr. Christine M. Storts District 9–Space Coast

The FVMA will continue to send pertinent and timely emails as well as update their social media, whenever they receive information. Please reach out to your district representative or call/email the FVMA, if you have questions related to the veterinary profession or your membership.

Dr. Ernest C. Godfrey AVMA Delegate

I am very proud of the people in this profession and the support, compassion, and grace we offer one another. Keep it up, everyone! We will get through this! Be safe and God bless all.

Dr. Richard B. Williams AVMA Alternate Delegate Dr. Jacqueline S. Shellow FAEP Representative to the FVMA Executive Board

With a gracious heart,

Mary Smart, DVM



Opinions and statements expressed in The Advocate reflect the views of the contributors and do not represent the official policy of the Florida Veterinary Medical Association, unless so stated. Placement of an advertisement does not represent the FVMA’s endorsement of the product or service.


In Remembrance JERRY C. HALL, DVM Dr. Jerry C. Hall, 80, passed away on March 28, 2020, in Lakeland, Florida. Born in French Lick, Indiana on May 11, 1939, and raised in Indianapolis, Dr. Hall later attended Purdue University. As a part of Purdue's inaugural veterinary class, he graduated in 1963. Dr. Hall was fond of telling stories about his college experience, particularly about his road trip to the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair. In 1974, Dr. Hall opened Gibsonia Animal Clinic in Lakeland. A

family enterprise, the clinic employed every family member at some point. He loved his patients and enjoyed interacting with their owners. He practiced veterinary medicine for 30 years before retiring to travel and spend time with family. He is survived by his wife, Barbara; his children (a daughter and three sons) and their families; his brother and two sisters; and many beloved nieces and nephews.

THOMAS T. REED, DVM Dr. Thomas T. Reed, 88, of Clermont, Florida, passed away on Nov. 25, 2019. He practiced small animal medicine in Indiana and Florida for 52 years. After his graduation in 1949, he joined the U.S. Army, serving for two years in Korea and Japan. He received his degree in accounting from the University of Evansville, prior to entering Purdue School

of Veterinary Medicine and graduating in 1963. During that time, Dr. Reed owned a practice in Bargersville, Indiana, for several years. He is survived by his wife, Karen; two sons and a daughter; three grandchildren; and a sister.

FREDERICK M. McMULLAN, DVM Dr. Frederick M. McMullan, 67, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, passed away in October 2019. Dr. McMullan was a non-resident member of the FVMA since 2012. He co-owned All Pets Hospital, a small animal practice in Baton Rouge. Dr. McMullan also worked closely with several rescue organizations in Louisiana and was a member of the Louisiana

Veterinary Medical Association. Dr. McMullan is survived by his wife, Debbi, and a brother. Dr. McMullan’s significant contributions to veterinary medicine and public service in his home state were recognized by the Louisiana VMA who named him the Ralph C. Cooper Veterinarian of the Year in 2017.

In This Issue 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 10 | 15 |

In Remembrance Member Spotlight 2020 Clinical Investigator Award New FVMA President & President-elect Past President Honored & District Representatives Elected to the Executive Board FVMA 2020 Annual Award Honorees PES 2020 Save the Date WWW.FVMA.ORG |

16 | 24 | 26 | 30 | 32 | 33 |

Protecting the Veterinary Profession During the COVID-19 Pandemic 2020 FVMA Legislative Wrap Up Quality of Life Testing Practice Pulse Veterinary Clinic Inspection Checklist Classified Advertisements




|  3

MEMBER SPOTLIGHT FVMA Member Cares for Endangered Florida Panther Kittens FVMA member Ashley Ayoob, DVM, DACVECC, DACVIM, stepped in to care for two-week old panther kittens after their mother showed signs of intermittent ataxia with hind-end weakness. The illness, a threat to both the mother and her two kittens, forced the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to intervene in order so save the young, endangered panthers. The FWC presented the two kittens to BluePearl Specialty and Emergency Pet Hospital to be cared for in July of 2019. The kittens, just two weeks old, required 24/7 nursing care and continuous monitoring for neurological deterioration. Dr. Ayoob, board certified in veterinary emergency and critical care, jumped at the chance to help. The kittens' needs, similar to any neonatal animal, included bottle feedings, heat support and grooming. She monitored the kittens as they grew and performed daily neurological exams. “While under my care they appeared to be very healthy and vigorous,” Dr. Ayoob said. “As these are exotic large animals, we did try to limit their interaction with humans so as not to create an unnatural bond between this wild species and humans.” The neurological condition that affected the kittens' mother is still being looked into by the FWC. The FWC has termed this condition feline leukomyelopathy (FLM). A definitive cause has not been identified, but possible causes include degenerative diseases, environmental toxin exposure, nutritional deficiencies and infectious disease. So far, the FWC has only documented eight cases (two panthers and six bobcats) of FLM. Dr. Ayoob says the affected cats have been recorded from South Florida up to the Gainesville area; the afflicted mother came from Collier County.

Ashley Ayoob, DVM, DACVECC, DACVIM. Unfortunately, the mother of the kittens had to be captured and euthanized due to her deteriorating condition. Dr. Ayoob says that, because she was documented, this has helped experts gain further insight into this disorder. The panther kittens are currently at White Oak Conservancy near Jacksonville, Florida. They remain healthy and robust with no current clinical signs. Dr. Ayoob hopes others in the veterinary medical field can play a more active role in protecting panthers’ well-being and understanding the diseases that afflict them. The Florida panther is an endangered species and the FWC continues to monitor their population. Only 120-230 are estimated to be left in the wild. Dr. Ayoob says the collection of biomedical information is critical, not only for assessing the health of the individual animal, but also for assessing risk factors for the population. The gathering of biomedical information and the treatment of domestic species, for infectious diseases, nutritional deficiencies, degenerative diseases and toxins that can cause cross-species disease, help protect this endangered species. Dr. Ayoob’s clinical interests include infectious disease, sepsis and shock, transfusion medicine, and disorders of coagulation. She has authored internationally published, scientific articles in these fields.

The conservation of Florida panthers is key to the survival of the species. 4  |  FVMA ADVOCATE

“The opportunity to partner in the care of this endangered species was truly an exceptional experience,” Dr. Ayoob said.

Dr. OSSIBOFF Honored with


ROBERT JAMES OSSIBOFF DVM, Ph.D., DACVP The FVMA Clinical Investigator Award recipient for 2020 is Dr. Robert James Ossiboff. Dr. Ossiboff received the award during the 2019-2020 UF College of Veterinary Medicine Research Awards Ceremony (UFCVM). Dr. Ossiboff is a clinical assistant professor of aquatic pathology/anatomic pathology at UFCVM in the department of comparative, diagnostic and population medicine. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced schools and campuses throughout the state of Florida to close, as it has in most other areas of the country. The college has transformed classes and activities usually held during this time of year into virtual events. This year, on Friday, April 17th, 2020, the UFCVM Research Awards Ceremony was held via Zoom and Dr. Ossiboff was bestowed his award virtually. Dr. Ossiboff is a board-certified veterinary anatomic pathologist. He received his B.S. in biology from Loyola University in Chicago. In 2010, he received his DVM degree from Cornell University and continued on at Cornell Graduate School where he earned a Ph.D. in comparative biomedical sciences with a concentration in infectious disease. He was selected for the Clinical Investigator Award to recognize his dedication as a clinician, educator, researcher and, specifically, for his expertise in anatomic pathology focusing on amphibians and reptiles. Dr. Ossiboff has authored 53 publications and lists his interests as pathology and diseases of non-domestic species, including companion exotic, zoo and wildlife species, with particular interest in diseases of reptiles and amphibians and infectious diseases of wildlife.

NEW FVMA PRESIDENT AND PRESIDENT-ELECT DR. MARY SMART FVMA PRESIDENT 2020-2021 Dr. Ma r y Sma r t w a s i n s t a l le d a s t he 93 r d president of the FVMA on Friday, March 13, 2020, at the Annual Awards Ceremony & Installation of Officers during the 91st FVMA Annual Conference. Dr. Smart previously served on the FVMA Board, most recently as president-elect. Prior, Dr. Smart served five years as the District VII representative on the board. District VII encompasses the following counties in southwest Florida: Charlotte, DeSoto, Hardee, Lee, Manatee and Sarasota.

an emergency medicine practitioner and a practice owner in southwest Florida. She is currently employed at Westbay Animal Hospital in Bradenton, Florida. Dr. Smart is a past president of the Manatee County Veterinary Medical Society and is also a member of the AVMA. She has a soft spot for dachshunds and has two of her own (Ray and Lily). She also has a cat named Tigger and a horse named Chief. Outside of work, Dr. Smart enjoys boating, bicycling, and spending time with her family and with her daughter at the barn.

The new FVMA president attended the University of Maryland from 1976 to 1980, where she received her B.S. in animal science. She continued her education at UFCVM, where she earned her DVM in 1985. Dr. Smart has worked in both large and small animal practice as an associate veterinarian, a relief veterinarian,

Dr. Mary Smart receives the President's Gavel from FVMA Past President, Dr. Marc Presnell, at the FVMA Annual Awards Ceremony.

DR. MARTA LISTA FVMA PRESIDENT-ELECT 2021-2022 Dr. Marta Lista will continue to serve on the FVMA Executive Board, this time as the president-elect. Dr. Lista was two years into her second three-year term as the District VI representative on the FVMA Executive Board when she was elected to her new seat on the board. District VI covers the counties of South Florida. Dr. Lista remains active in local organized veterinary medicine and served as the president of the South Florida Veterinary Medical

Association. She is an alumnus of UFCVM (Class of 2000) and currently owns Trail Animal Hospital in Miami. During her career, Dr. Lista has been the recipient of numerous outstanding veterinary awards. She’s a two-time FVMA Gold Star Award winner. In 2005 and 2006, she was recognized as South Florida’s “Veterinarian of the Year.” In her free time, Dr. Lista competes in local half marathons and 5K races. She’s also a member of a triathlon group and enjoys biking and swimming. Dr. Lista has a boat captain’s license and enjoys spending time on beautiful Biscayne Bay. She and her husband, Charles, and stepdaughter, Isabelle, are caretakers of their family’s rescue retriever, Bo.

Dr. Marta Lista is sworn in as the new president-elect by FVMA Past President, Dr. Marc Presnell. FVMAADVOCATE ADVOCATE 6 6 | |  FVMA

PAST PRESIDENT HONORED DR. MICHAEL EPPERSON FVMA PAST PRESIDENT Outgoing FVMA president, Dr. Michael Epperson, was honored for his year of outstanding service as the 2019-2020 FVMA President during the Annual Awards Ceremony & Installation of Officers on Friday, March 13, 2020. Dr. Epperson will continue to serve on the association’s board of governors, executive board, and as the FVMA Foundation president though March 2021. Previously, Dr. Epperson served as the FVMA District VIII representative (serving northwest Florida). He is also active locally as a member of the Miracle Strip Veterinary Medical Society, a group of veterinarians in District VIII who meet monthly to discuss the latest advances in veterinary medicine. Dr. Epperson is a two-time alumnus of Mississippi State University, where he received his bachelor’s degree in animal and dairy science and, later, graduated from the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine. His special veterinary interests include dermatology, surgery and ultrasound.

Dr. Michael Epperson, 2019-2020 FVMA president, receiving a plaque honoring his outstanding leadership.

since 2008 and acquired Destin Animal Clinic in Destin, Florida in 2018. They are a dedicated team focused on high-quality care, while embracing a strong doctor-patient-client relationship. Their philosophy is to treat each pet like their own and provide the best care and medical treatment possible. Thank you Dr. Epperson for your year of distinguished service as FVMA president!

He and his wife, Dr. Heather Hartley, have owned Companion Animal Hospital & Boarding Center in Fort Walton Beach, Florida

N E W DI ST R I C T R E PR E S E N TA TIV ES ON THE FVMA EXECUTIVE BOARD Four District Representatives and the FAEP Representative to the FVMA Executive Board were nominated by local VMAs and the FAEP Council, and, being unopposed, were certified as duly elected by the Nominating Committee in conformity with FVMA Bylaws.

Welcome! Pictured from left to right: Drs. Robert Swinger, Jacqueline S. Shellow and Donald S. Howell. Note: Drs. Christine Storts, Barbara Lewis and John Wight were unable to attend the ceremony.




@FLORIDA_VMA |  7 |  7


DISTRICT IV REPRESENTATIVE We are honored to have Dr. Donald S. Howell join the FVMA Executive Board as the District IV representative. He will represent the Tampa Bay area and neighboring counties (Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas and Sumter). For the last 22 years, he has owned and operated Midway Animal Hospital in Largo, Florida. Dr. Howell is a 1981 graduate of Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.


DISTRICT VI REPRESENTATIVE Dr. Robert Swinger is now the District VI representative, representing South Florida (Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe counties). He was appointed by the FVMA Executive Board to complete the term of president-elect Dr. Marta Lista. After receiving his DVM degree in 2003, Dr. Swinger launched Animal Eye Guys and joined the Hollywood Animal Hospital veterinary team in 2011. He is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.


DISTRICT VII REPRESENTATIVE Dr. Barbara Lewis was elected as the District VII representative to serve southwest Florida: Charlotte, DeSoto, Hardee, Lee, Manatee and Sarasota. This will be her first full term on the FVMA Executive Board. She remains on the board after serving for one year to complete the term of Dr. Mary Smart who became presidentelect in 2019. Dr. Lewis is very active within her local veterinary community, and she is also an AVMA member. Dr. Lewis is an associate veterinarian at North River Animal Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida.



DISTRICT VIII REPRESENTATIVE Dr. John Wight was elected to serve on the FVMA Executive Board as the District VIII representative. District VIII encompasses Escambia, Oskaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton counties. After a tour of duty in the United States Marine Corps, he received his DVM degree from UFCVM in 1995. Dr. Wight moved to Fort Walton Beach, Florida and opened Veterinary Surgery Service Inc in 2017.


The FVMA welcomes Dr. Christine M. Storts back to the executive board as the District IX representative. She represents Florida’s Space Coast. Dr. Storts graduated with honors from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine. She practices at Atlantic Animal Clinic in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Dr. Storts previously served on the FVMA Executive Board as district representative from 2007-2014.



Dr. Jacqueline S. Shellow will serve a second three-year term on the FVMA Executive Board as the representative of the Florida Association of Equine Practitioners (FAEP), the equine exclusive division of the FVMA. Dr. Shellow is long-time FAEP council member, and she served as FAEP president in 2010. She is a partner at Teigland, Franklin and Brokken, DVM’s P. A., of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, a specialty practice for pleasure horses and Thoroughbreds. She joined the practice when she graduated from UFCVM in 1987. Dr. Shellow has a master’s degree in Equine Nutrition and is certified in veterinary acupuncture by the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society and in animal chiropractic by the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association.

protecting your veterinary license Your license is one of the most important assets you need to protect. Don’t face complaints against your veterinary license alone. Our Veterinary License Defense program helps veterinarians get the legal protection they deserve. 800-228-7548, option 2


FVMA 2020 AWARD HONOREES DR. JEFFREY S. GODWIN – DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD We were honored to present this year’s Distinguished Service Award to FVMA past president Dr. Jeffrey S. Godwin. This award goes to members with exceptional achievements in, and who have contributed to, the advancement of veterinary medicine and the profession. Dr. Godwin has been an active member of the FVMA for 40 years and served as president of the Brevard County VMA and the Veterinary Orthopedic Society. Dr. Godwin continues to keep the local veterinary community informed about business regulation changes that affect veterinary practices. In the community, Dr. Godwin has served as president of the Melbourne Rotary Club and as Chairman of the Board of the Melbourne Regional Chamber of Commerce. He is also an active member of the Leadership Team at Grace Church in Melbourne, Florida.

DR. JULIO A. IBÁÑEZ – LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT One of two Lifetime Achievement Awards bestowed in 2020 went to Dr. Julio A. Ibáñez. This award is given to senior, practicing or retired, FVMA members who have made outstanding contributions to the association and to veterinary medicine. Dr. Ibáñez has been a small animal practitioner serving his community in Miami for 40 years. He is well known in the South Florida area for his long-standing and passionate dedication to the profession. He served on the executive board of the South Florida Veterinary Medical Association from 2000-2012 and as president from 2003-2005. From 2003-2005, he was also president of the Miami Veterinary Foundation, which provides sterilization services and veterinary care to thousands of pets each year in under-served communities. In addition to these notable roles, Dr. Ibáñez has volunteered with non-profits like The Cat Network and Adopt-A-Pet. He is a true hero to the animals and the people who care for them. Following Hurricane Andrew in 1992, he was instrumental in coordinating relief efforts for pets in need. Dr. Ibáñez recently retired after many prestigious and hardworking years, and the FVMA thanks him for his everlasting contributions to veterinary medicine and our profession.

DR. DAVID T. WISE – LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT A long-standing member of the FVMA, Dr. Wise has served in companion animal medicine and surgery as a distinguished veterinarian, practice owner and mentor for more than 40 years in Miami. He has greatly influenced the quality of small animal care and pioneered progressive and quality orthopedic and spinal surgical procedures in private practice for decades. Dr. Wise’s most impressive quality is his practice philosophy and pursuit of veterinary excellence in small animal medicine and surgery over many years. Dr. Wise established Knowles Animal Clinic in Miami, a 24-hour state-of-the-art practice, incorporating both a quality day practice with routine and advanced surgery and an emergency/critical care facility. He has inspired many to pursue both excellence and accountability in the veterinary profession. His mentorship has resulted in the graduation of approximately 120 young people, after Dr. Wise endorsed them for entrance into the veterinary profession. The FVMA is proud to honor Dr. Wise with this prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.


FVMA 2020 AWARD HONOREES DR. GERARDO J. DIAZ – VETERINARIAN OF THE YEAR This year’s Veterinarian of the Year Award was presented to FVMA past president Dr. Gerardo J. Diaz. This award is presented to FVMA members who show distinguished, unselfish and dedicated service to the association. As an active FVMA member throughout his career, Dr. Diaz has been a pillar of strength for the association and the South Florida Veterinary Medical Association. He’s known for recruiting and mentoring younger veterinarians. Dr. Diaz teaches them about the importance of organized medicine and lobbying, especially the need to lobby for the rights of veterinarians at both the local and state level. Dr. Diaz currently serves on the FVMA's Fiscal Advisory Committee and Legislative Affairs Committee as well as the UFCVM Admissions Committee. He was president of the FVMA in 2004, after serving as the representative for District VI. In 2014, the FVMA honored him with the Gold Star Award.

ANN WADE – PRESIDENT'S AWARD On March 13, 2020, outgoing FVMA President, Dr. Michael Epperson, presented the FVMA's Deputy Executive Director, Ann Wade, with the President’s Award. Ms. Wade has worked behind the scenes at the FVMA since 2013, when she joined the association’s staff as director of communications. While presenting the President’s Award during the annual awards ceremony, Dr. Epperson described her as “invaluable, irreplaceable, hardworking and amazing.” “Ann Wade is the epitome of professional excellence. Her work ethic, her passion, and her delivery are beyond expectations. I’m grateful for Dr. Epperson’s acknowledgement of her exemplary service by honoring her with the 2020 President’s Award,” Phil Hinkle, executive director, says of Ms. Wade. Ms. Wade migrated to Florida in 2012 from Belize, where, as a communications professional, she worked in the regulatory sector, in broadcasting and in government. The President’s Award was instituted in 2008 by the executive board as an FVMA Special Award to recognize special individuals or special acts. The President’s Award is given at the sole discretion of the association's president. The FVMA is grateful for Ms. Wade’s continued dedication to the association and feel she is more than deserving of this prestigious award.

K-9 OFFICER RAVEN – FVMA PET HERO AWARD The FVMA awards one pet each year who has selflessly enhanced, saved or preserved human life. This year, we presented the FVMA Pet Hero Award to posthumously, K-9 Officer Raven and her partner, Tallahassee Police Department Investigator, Brianne Shaut. Investigator Shaut and Raven were united as a team in 2010 and began working within the Drug Interdiction Unit. K-9 Officer Raven began her law enforcement career after certifying as a narcotics detection K-9. Raven was responsible for intercepting tens of thousands of pounds of illegal drugs and drug paraphernalia. She disrupted countless drug transactions and did her job with tremendous enthusiasm, while breaking down barriers and building bonds with all those she encountered during her tour of duty. Raven was called upon by local and federal law enforcement agencies regularly for her incredible nose and work ethic. Raven was certified (with 100% accuracy) through the United States Canine Association, North American Police Working Dog Association, American Detection Dog Association and the National Narcotic Detector Dog Association. Tragically, on September 25, 2019, while on duty, Raven passed away. K-9 Officer Raven is now installed as the 2020 Pet Hero in the FVMA Pet Hall of Fame. WWW.FVMA.ORG |




FVMA 2020 AWARD HONOREES LINDSEY LATHROP, CVT – CVT OF THE YEAR This year, the FVMA honored Lindsey Lathrop, a veterinary technician from Palmetto, Florida, as our “CVT of the Year.” This annual award recognizes a CVT for their outstanding contribution to the overall success of a veterinary practice operated or staffed by an FVMA member veterinarian. FVMA District Representative Dr. Barbara Lewis, of North River Animal Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida, nominated Lathrop because of her positive attitude and willingness to work hard and assist fellow team members in any way she can. “Lindsey is a one in a million, amazing woman, team member and leader,” Dr. Lewis said. “She prepares for things before anyone even asks her to, always anticipates possible outcomes and has solutions on standby. The clients love her because she is so efficient, knowledgeable and compassionate, while somehow always managing to remember everyone’s name! Her technician skills, knowledge base and drive — to learn more, achieve more, and do more — are inspiring and drive our team to do the same. I am thankful that Lindsey is a part of my team and a dear friend.”

KELLIE STODDARD – TEAM MEMBER OF THE YEAR The FVMA honored Kellie Stoddard as the 2020 “Team Member of the Year.” This annual award recognizes a veterinary team member for their outstanding contribution to the overall success of a veterinary practice operated or staffed by an FVMA member veterinarian. FVMA member Dr. Zachary A. Pearl, of Ellenton Animal Hospital in Parrish, Florida, nominated Stoddard, who is the hospital's practice manager. Dr. Pearl credits Kellie as being an integral part of Ellenton Animal Hospital’s growth for more than 15 years. “She is tirelessly committed to each and every patient and has developed many long-term relationships with our clients,” Dr. Pearl said. “Acting as both a technician and a manager, Kellie regularly demonstrates her leadership role every day, motivating our staff and keeping up with all the newest products and services, which allows our team to provide the best quality of care possible.”



gold star awards are presented to FVMA members who have contributed much of their time and energy to the association and/or their respective local associations for the advancement of veterinary medicine.

Congratulations! Gold Star Award recipients from left to right: Drs. Michelle Tucker, Mary Smart, Kelly J. Sloan-Wade, Robert Leonard Jr., Dorsey G. Hightower, Wade Gingerich, Jo Ann Daniels and James Fawcett. Note: Some of our Gold Star recipients could not attend our Annual Awards Ceremony. 12  |  FVMA ADVOCATE

GOLD STAR DR. JAMES BLOCK Dr. Block is a past president of South Florida Veterinary Medical Association and Rotar y International. Together with his wife, Dr. Janet Nesbit, and son, Adam Block, he founded the South Florida Fund for Retired Law Enforcement K-9s, which continues to provide medical assistance to these K-9s after they retire from the force. Dr. Block also served on the board of governors and the board of trustees for the Zoological Society of Florida. He is a member of the AVMA, the American Heartworm Society and the Critical Care Society. DR. CHERIE BUISSON Dr. Buisson has been a shelter veterinarian, feline-only and multispecies practitioner. In 2015, she opened Helping Hands Pet Hospice, which provides house-call pet hospice and euthanasia. She was a member of the first graduating class of the International Association for Animal Hospice and Palliative Care's (IAAHPC) certification program, which she is now also a teacher for. In 2017, she became one of 60 Certified Hospice and Palliative Care Veterinarians in the world. Her articles have been featured on DrAndyRoark.com. Dr. Buisson started A Happy Vet in January 2016, a website devoted to supporting veterinary professionals as they learn to take care of themselves and create happier workplaces. She is an international speaker and offers workshops on end-of-life care and professional development with the goal of finding contentment in this field of veterinary medicine.


DR. JO ANN DANIELS Dr. Daniels is a small animal veterinarian and the medical director of Central Pasco Veterinary Care in Lutz, Florida. She is involved in many community organizations and events, locally and regionally. As a member of Disaster Animal Response Teams, she became FEMA ICS certified and worked with other veterinarians to organize the Tampa Bay Regional Disaster Symposium. The Animal Veterinary Medical Foundation awarded a grant for this symposium, which is also accredited by the FVMA. Dr. Daniels is a guest lecturer who teaches veterinarians about disaster medicine and the ways veterinary hospitals can prepare for such events. DR. JAMES FAWCETT Dr. Fawcett served on the FVMA Executive Board from 19861991. Between 19911992, he served as president of the association. As FVMA President, he was the Chairman of the Hurricane Andrew Recovery Committee, all while being personally affected by the natural disaster. Dr. Fawcett was instrumental in serving as the FVMA representative during the establishment of the AVMA certification of the Miami-Dade Veterinary Technician Program. DR. STEPHEN D. FISCH Dr. Fisch serves as president of AVS Equine Medical & Surgical Hospital in Tallahassee, Florida. AVS is the only fullservice equine hospital



within 150 miles of the state capital. Originally, the practice consisted of Dr. Fisch, one technician and a mobile vet truck. Because of Dr. Fisch's visiosn, AVS has become a 26,000 square foot state-ofthe-art medical and surgical hospital with more than 35 acres of rolling pasture and multiple veterinarians. He services clients from South Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina and South Carolina. DR. WADE GINGERICH Dr. Gingerich has been a lecturer at several FVMA conferences. During his time in general practice, Dr. Gingerich realized the need for increased levels of oral care for animals. After spending seven years in the Midwest, Dr. Gingerich returned to Florida to provide exceptional oral care for companion animals in the community where he grew up. His compassion for all animals, and the bond they share with their caregivers, is evident in his daily practices. This has transitioned into the trusting and caring relationships he has with all his clients and their pets. DR. FRANCESCA GRIFFIN Dr. Griffin has been a member of the FVMA since 2003 and is an active member of the Alachua County VMA in Gainesville, Florida. She devotes her career to the advancement of the profession through training veterinary students in primary care, general practice medicine and dentistry. Dr. Griffin is the clinical assistant professor of primary care and dentistry in the department of small animal clinical sciences at UFCVM. She is dedicated to ensuring that students get a great education and training.



GOLD STAR DR. DORSEY G. HIGHTOWER During his 51 years of practice, Dr. Hightower has also enjoyed working as a state and community volunteer. Since 1968, he has been a member of the FVMA and the AVMA. He is also a past president of the Ridge Veterinary Medical Society of Winter Haven, Florida. After his year as president of the Lakeland Rotary Club, he spent many years as a board member for several local nonprofit organizations. He is a member of both Leadership Lakeland and Leadership Polk. He is also an active member of the Mount Dora Christian Academy Board of Directors. DR. RACHEL KLEMAWESCH Dr. Klemawesch has served on several FVMA committees. In March, she retired from the FVMA Executive Board after serving for six years as the District IV representative. She was also president of the Pinellas County Veterinary Medical Association in 2014 and continued to serve on the VMA's board through 2019. Dr. Klemawesch was also a member of the FVMA Animal Welfare, Nominating and Awards Committees during her tenure of service on the FVMA Executive Board.




DR. ROBERT LEONARD JR. Dr. Leonard has honorably served the veterinary profession throughout his career and continues to serve as the current chair of the Florida Board of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Leonard was first appointed to the board by Governor Rick Scott in 2014. He also serves as the current chairman of the New Smyrna Beach Animal Control Board. He’s a past president of the Volusia County Veterinary Medical Society and a member of the UFCVM Admissions Committee, a role that enables him to help the newest members of the veterinary profession. DR. DAWN LOGAS Dr. Logas has dedicated her career to exemplary service in veterinary medicine. She is the founder of the Veterinary Dermatology Center, which has served Orlando’s pet owners and veterinarians for more than 25 years. Dr. Logas is a past president of the American College of Veterinary Dermatology and she continues to serve on several of the college’s committees. She also regularly lectures at conferences in Florida, including the FVMA's Gulf-Atlantic Veterinary Conference (TGAVC). DR. LEENA PLAVUMKAL Dr. Plavumkal is the managing member of Florida Vet on Wheels, a house-call veterinary clinic for dogs and cats in Lee County. She makes veterinary care convenient for pet owners in her county and provides at-home x-rays, surgery, teeth cleaning, lab work, euthanasia, vaccines and other routine veterinary care. Her clients praise her as a caring veterinarian who makes life easier for them and their pets.

DR. KELLY SLOAN-WADE Dr. Sloan-Wade has been an unfailing member of the FVMA and her local association for years. During the last six years, she's served as the District IX representative on the FVMA Executive Board and has also taken on leadership roles with the Brevard County Veterinary Medical Association. Within her community, Dr. Sloan-Wade teaches new veterinary technicians and works at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. DR. MARY SMART Dr. Smart is the new President of the FVMA and will lead the association through March 2021. After years serving on the board of the Manatee County VMA, she was elected to serve as the FVMA’s District VII representative. Dr. Smart continues to keep up with monthly Manatee VMA meetings and brings FVMA information to the group. As she embraces her new role as president, she provides key guidance and support to advance the FVMA's strategic vision. DR. MICHELLE TUCKER Dr. Tucker maintains a high level of care for her clients and patients as an emergency veterinarian in South Florida. She is well respected in the community and serves as an associate at one of the largest emergency clinics in Palm Beach, Florida. Dr. Tucker pioneered a blood donor program, which supplies other emergency clinics and general practitioners in the area. She continues to be a leader in transfusion medicine in her community.


16 ANNUAL th



OCTOBER 8-11, 2020







7207 MONETARY DRIVE, ORLANDO, FL 32809 | PH: 800.992.3862 | FAX: 407.240.3710 | EMAIL: INFO@FVMA.ORG





Protecting the Veterinary Profession During the COVID-19 Pandemic The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted industries all over the globe. Veterinary medicine is no exception. Practitioners in Florida, and across the world, have faced new challenges—and risen to meet them by, instituting new protocols and social distancing measures to ensure the safety of their staff, clients and patients. As the “Voice of Veterinary Medicine in Florida,” the FVMA remains ready to serve the veterinary profession. Even in times of crisis, the FVMA protects the profession and ensures the timely flow of information. The FVMA received its first notice of mandatory business closures on March 19, 2020, when Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez issued Executive Order 07-20. The mayor closed all non-essential businesses in Miami-Dade County to limit the movement of persons and safeguard the lives and health of its citizens. The initial order would have closed veterinary clinics and hospitals in Miami-Dade, Florida’s largest county with a population of more than 2.8 million residents. Immediately upon receiving notification of this order, the FVMA interceded with County Mayor Gimenez's office to designate veterinary practices in the Miami-Dade area as “Essential Businesses.” Within a few hours of the request, Mayor Gimenez issued an Addendum to his Executive Order to clarify which businesses could remain open. Because of the FVMA’s swift intervention, the Mayor’s Addendum included veterinarians and pet boarding facilities as essential businesses. This victory was key. The FVMA was acutely aware that if the association could get Miami-Dade, the first county in Florida to issue mandatory business closures, to include veterinarians on their list of essential businesses then other counties would follow suit. The inclusion of veterinarians ensured the profession

remained able to protect the health and well-being of pets and citizens—a vital community role that must be filled in both ordinary and extraordinary times. With this victory secure, the FVMA’s strategic plan was a success—all subsequent mandatory business closures and stay-at-home orders across the state of Florida considered veterinarians essential, including the statewide executive order issued later by the governor. On April 1, Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order No. 20-91, requiring all persons in Florida to limit their movements and personal interactions outside of their homes to only those necessary to obtain or provide an essential service or conduct essential activities. The order stated that essential services were to include those businesses and activities designated in Executive Order No. 20-89 and its attached list propounded by MiamiDade County in multiple orders. The statewide executive order, citing Miami-Dade’s list of essential businesses, clearly indicated that the FVMA’s swift response in Miami-Dade effected the entire state’s categorization of veterinary practices as an essential service. As the COVID-19 crisis unfolds, the FVMA continues to stay abreast of potential threats and keep membership informed about key developments. With veterinary practices able to remain in business, new challenges regarding the conservation of PPE, the definition of “medically unnecessary” procedures, the use of telemedicine and ways to keep staff safe, arose as cases of infection in the state, and across the nation, multiplied. In addition to the topics covered below, the FVMA provides pertinent COVID-19 updates on our website (FVMA.org) in addition to resources and materials that veterinarians can give to their clients.

Why Veterinarians Are Designated as Essential •

Front-line veterinary practitioners and staff are among the healthcare professionals who provide surveillance for diseases deemed reportable by state and federal governments, including zoonotic diseases such as rabies, influenza and Lyme disease. They are also responsible for issuing certificates of veterinary inspection that are required


for the movement of animals between states and countries, including those entering the food supply. Veterinarians are an integral part of our nation’s food and fiber industries. Veterinary care is critical to ensure that only healthy animals enter the food supply. While primarily housed on farms, food animals are also present in urban areas.

• • •

Veterinary practices provide medical and surgical care daily for critically ill and injured animals. Veterinarians provide care for service and therapy animals, supporting both animal and human welfare. Veterinarians also oversee the care of laboratory animals, which are critical to research that leads to the development of pharmaceuticals and biologics, including vaccines such as those currently being developed to combat COVID-19. Veterinarians care for rare, threatened and endangered animals in zoos, aquaria, wildlife rehabilitation clinics and wildlife facilities. Even if such entities need to be closed to the public for COVID-19 mitigation, veterinarians and animal care staff must continue to care for these animals.

Veterinarians and their support staff are trusted professionals involved in disaster situations. While perhaps different from a statutory and regulatory perspective, the training, education and experience that veterinarians and their staff have in dealing with disasters, are clearly transferable skills in whatever COVID-19 risk mitigation is deemed necessary. The veterinary profession in Florida, through the FVMA’s Veterinary Corps and the FVMA’s Disaster Preparedness Committee, play an integral role within the state’s EFS 17 response team through the Florida Department of Agriculture Disaster Response Team.

Medically Necessary or Unnecessary? In the statewide Executive Order No. 20-91, issued April 1, 2020, Governor Ron DeSantis designated veterinary medicine as an “Essential Service.” However, veterinarians were left out of the preceding Executive Order No. 20-72 issued on March 20. The order prohibited medically unnecessary procedures or surgery. The order directed: “All hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, office surgery centers, dental, orthodontic and endodontic offices, and other health care practitioners offices in the State of Florida are prohibited from providing any medically unnecessary, nonurgent or non-emergency procedure or surgery which, if delayed, does not place a patient’s immediate health, safety, or well-being at risk, or will, if delayed, not contribute to the worsening of a serious or life-threatening medical condition. Accordingly, all health care practitioners licensed in the State of Florida,

including dentists, shall immediately cease performing these elective services.” While the governor’s order did not specify veterinary medicine, the FVMA recommended that veterinarians defer elective procedures, that in their judgement are not necessary, in order to reduce human-to-human contact and conserve PPE until the order's expiration. The FVMA recognizes that any services provided are, and should be, at the professional, clinical judgement of the treating veterinarian. To date, there is no list of specific procedures in veterinary medicine that should be deferred. The procedures needed for each patient should be made on a caseby-case basis and are dependent on the professional judgment of the treating veterinarian, as it relates to each individual situation.

The inclusion of veterinarians ensured the veterinary profession remained able to protect the health and well-being of pets and citizens—a vital community role that must be filled in both ordinary and extraordinary times. With this victory secure, the FVMA’s strategic plan was a success—all subsequent mandatory business closures and stay-at-home orders across the state of Florida considered veterinarians essential, including the statewide executive order issued by the governor.





COVID-19 Protocol Recommendations to Protect Your Practice Prioritize urgent and sick-pet visits over wellness visits—young animal vaccination schedules not included.

Prioritize appointments.

Adjust hours of operation. Set appropriate exceptions.

Communicate new protocols to clients. Clients call from the parking lot on arrival.

Consider new euthanasia protocols and offer exceptions (critical cases, young animals or patients with special needs).

Team members shuttle pets to the facility and back.

Clients stay in their cars.

Conversations happen by phone as needed.

Shortening hours of operation can allow for additional sanitizing tim

• Wear gloves. • Disinfect boxes. • Put all lab samples in a pick-up box, so drivers don't have to come inside.

Share new protocols via email, social media and when making appointments.

Prioritize appointments. Some practices now prioritize Adjust hours of operation. Shortening hours of operation urgent and sick-pet visits over wellness visits—young animal vaccination schedules not included.

can allow for additional sanitizing time. In these particularly difficult times, it could also help prevent burnout.

Communicate new protocol to clients. Many practices are

In addition to new operating protocols, it is important to do the following:

shifting to a curbside model where: • Clients call from the parking lot on arrival. • Team members shuttle pets to the facility and back. • Clients stay in their cars. • Conversations happen by phone as needed.

When making this shift: • Explain the change when appointments are made. • Email all clients about the process. • Post on social media about the change. • Reiterate the changes to the clients when they arrive. • Share how the new protocol is working and any adjustments that have been made on social media to keep your clients up to date.

Set appropriate exceptions to new protocols that work for

When handling deliveries and lab samples, consider:

you. Consider new euthanasia protocols and offer exceptions (critical cases, young animals or patients with special needs). • • • •

Having deliveries left outside. Wearing gloves to carry and unpack boxes. Disinfecting boxes. Putting all lab samples in outside pick-up boxes, so that drivers don’t have to come inside.


Practice good hygiene. Review CDC guidelines. ☑ NO HANDSHAKING! Use a fist bump, slight bow, elbow bump, etc. ☑ Use ONLY your knuckle to touch light switches, elevator buttons, etc. ☑ Lift the gasoline dispenser with a paper towel or use a disposable glove. ☑ Open doors with your closed fist or hip – do not grasp the handle with your hand unless there is no other way to open the door. This is especially important on bathroom and office/commercial doors. ☑ Use disinfectant wipes at the stores when they are available, including wiping the handle and child seat in grocery carts. ☑ Wash hands with soap for 20 seconds and/or use a greater than 60% alcohol-based sanitizer whenever you return home from ANY activity that involves locations where other people have been. ☑ If possible, cough or sneeze into a disposable tissue and discard. Use your elbow only if you have to. Stay home if you are sick. Maintain flexible leave policies and make sure all employees know they need to stay home if they are ill. Ask that clients notify you if they’re experiencing

Because of COVID-19, many practices have changed the way they operate. To help disseminate useful information to our members, we’ve compiled protocols that your practice may want to consider implementing, if you have not done so already. These protocols are meant to serve as a template, so that you can pick and choose ideas that will work for you — or that can be adapted to your operation. We hope these strategies will help you, your staff and your clients stay as safe as possible during this stressful time.


Practice good hygiene.

Stay home if you are sick.

• • •

Practice social distancing.

Clean and disinfect fequently.

Prioritize your health and well-being.

any symptoms to ensure you can take appropriate protective measures. Avoid close contact and practice social distancing. If you or your staff are able, work remotely. Maintain at least 6 feet between contacts. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces. Prioritize your health and well-being. During this tough time, the stress of being a veterinary professional can be overwhelming. Take your entire veterinary team’s wellbeing into account. Take care of yourself and be sure to ask your family and employees how they’re doing. Additional resources are available on the FVMA’s professional wellness page at FVMA.org.

Basic Points for Veterinary Health Care Providers Treating Companion Animals: •

Everyone, including veterinary health care providers and their clients, should be aware of Florida Executive Order 20-91: senior citizens and individuals with a significant underlying medical condition (such as chronic lung disease, moderate-to-severe asthma, serious heart conditions, immunocompromised status, cancer, diabetes, severe obesity, renal failure and liver disease) shall stay at home and take all measure to limit the risk of exposure to COVID-19. When scheduling an appointment with a client, the veterinary staff member should ask the client if the pet has been exposed to a known or suspected COVID-19 case. ☑ Telemedicine may be an option in some cases. If essential veterinary care is needed at the clinic, a healthy friend or family member should bring the animal in. Staff should again ask if the pet has been exposed to a known or suspected COVID-19 case upon intake. WWW.FVMA.ORG |

• •

Refer to the AVMA’s flowchart “Minimizing COVID-19 Exposure and Social Distancing in Veterinary Practice” to help you and your practice decide how a patient can be best cared for, while also staying as safe as possible. Staff who handle the animal should continue to be diligent with standard infection-control practices including good hand hygiene, avoiding mucous membrane exposure to pet saliva and other bodily fluids. ☑ At minimum, gloves and outerwear are recommended when working with the animal and cleaning the animal’s environment. The use of gloves, gowns, goggles or faceshields with surgical masks, and the minimization of staff numbers is recommended when there is a risk for sprays or splashes. See the National Association of State Public Health Veterinarians (NASPHV) Veterinary Standard Precautions and the CDC’s recommendations for optimizing PPE. The pet should be kept isolated from other pets while at the practice. ☑ If an animal has a new, concerning illness not attributable to more common medical conditions and resides with a person with COVID-19 or suspected COVID-19, the responding veterinarian should contact the Florida State Public Health Veterinarian (850-245-4117 or 850-2454401) or Florida State Animal Health Official (850-4100900 or after hours/weekends 800-342-5869). Continue to clean and disinfect all equipment used at your facility, following package instructions including recommended contact time. Non-human primates should be managed at a referral practice that specializes in the care of these animals.




Veterinary Telehealth and the VCPR Requirement Confusion surrounded FDA guidance published on March 24, 2020. The FDA stated it did not intend to enforce the physical examination or medically appropriate visits to the premises requirement in the federal veterinary-client-patient-relationship (VCPR) definition relevant to the FDA regulations that govern Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) drugs. The federal definition of the VCPR is similar to Florida’s. The FDA said in its guidance that it did not intend to charge veterinarians with a violation of federal law if they used telemedicine, in lieu of physical exam/ premises visits, but only in extra-label drug use or veterinary feed directive cases. The FDA’s actions in this regard did not mean that the VCPR requirement was no longer required in the practice of veterinary medicine in Florida.

Department of Business and Professional Regulation Emergency Order on Telemedicine The State of Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulations (DBPR) issued Emergency Order 2020-04 on March 27, 2020. The order suspended restrictions in the Florida Veterinary Practice Act Chapter 474, Florida Statutes and Rule 61G-18 Florida Administrative Code that prohibit veterinarians from practicing telemedicine on their patients, providing the veterinarian exercises good clinical judgment to assist the patient. The Emergency Order on telemedicine states: 11.) Any restriction in chapter 474, Florida Statutes, or chapter 61G-18, Florida Administrative Code, which would prohibit active Florida licensed veterinarians in good standing from practicing telemedicine on their patients is suspended provided the attending veterinarian is comfortable assessing the patient remotely and feels able to exercise good clinical judgement to assist the patient.

Points of Clarification Regarding the DBPR's Emergency Order on Telemedicine Usage • The order does not suspend the VCPR requirement for the practice of veterinary medicine in Florida. We wish to stress that the order suspends restrictions that “prohibit active Florida licensed veterinarians in good standing from practicing telemedicine on their patients.” • The existing definition of a VCPR in Florida remains in effect (which requires a physical examination of the animal). • Veterinary telemedicine can be used to provide a diagnosis or treatment recommendations (this includes dispensing medications and authorizing prescriptions) for existing patients where a documented VCPR exists. • Veterinary telemedicine cannot be used to diagnose or treat a new patient when the veterinarian does not have a valid VCPR. The subject of veterinary telemedicine has been presented in proposed legislation in Florida for the past three years and has not been enacted into law. Although the existing definition of a VCPR remains in effect (which requires a physical examination of the animal), veterinary telemedicine can be used to provide diagnosis or treatment recommendations on existing patients (this includes dispensing medications and authorizing prescriptions). Veterinarians should consider the spirit of the governor’s emergency order and adopt strategies that will help minimize exposure to COVID-19. The treating veterinarian has the ultimate decision on whether the use of technology (video, phone or internet) to assist certain existing clients/patients is appropriate.

Licensing & License Renewal in the Age of COVID-19: The Board of Veterinary Medicine Defers License Renewal Audits Until January 2021 The Florida Board of Veterinary Medicine met on April 1, 2020 in an emergency session to approve two emergency measures related to licensing and active license renewal for 2020. The Board conducted a telephone conference to consider and approve the emergency rules, which became effective immediately after approval.


Rule regarding 2020 licensure application

• This first rule allows applicants who apply for licensure before January 1, 2021 to take an online course in “Florida Laws and Rules Governing the Practice of Veterinary Medicine” in lieu of the laws and rules exam.

Rule regarding CE for license renewal in 2020

• This second rule allows active Florida licensees to obtain all CE hours required in the 2018-2020 biennium license renewal through noninteractive/correspondence/distance learning courses. Veterinarians are required to renew their licenses by May 31 of each even-numbered year, but because May 31 falls on a Sunday this year, the deadline is June 1, 2020.

Board of Veterinary Medicine Defers CE Audits Because of extraordinary circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the FVMA requested that the emergency rule be amended to allow veterinarians until December 31, 2020, to obtain the required 30 hours of CE. The Board was advised that it did not have the authority to extend the license renewal deadline until December 31; however, the Board did announce that it had the authority to decide when to conduct CE audits. As a result of the FVMA’s efforts on behalf of all Florida licensed veterinarians, the Board announced that it will defer CE audits until January 2021. Under the Board’s existing rules, licensees responding to an audit can submit any CE hours taken before the date of the audit. By taking this action, the Board, in effect, announced that any CE hours taken before December 31, 2020, can be used to satisfy the 30 hours required for renewal in the current biennium.

Important Note:

• Veterinarians who take CE after June 1, 2020, to meet the 30 hours required for the 2018-2020 biennium will not be able to count those same hours for the 2020-2022 biennium.

Per 61G18-16.002 Continuing Education Requirements for Active Status License Renewal: • (2) Licensed veterinarians shall complete a minimum of thirty (30) hours of continuing professional education in veterinary medicine every biennium. Beginning on June 1, 2012, no less than one (1) hour of continuing education shall be in the area of dispensing legend drugs and no less than two (2) hours of continuing education shall be in the area of the laws and rules governing the practice of veterinary medicine. For the purposes of this rule, the laws and rules governing the practice of veterinary medicine are Chapters 455 and 474, F.S. and rule Division 61G18, F.A.C. (a) One (1) hour equals a minimum of fifty (50) minutes and a maximum of sixty (60) minutes. Total hours of lecture time cannot be added up and divided into 50-minute intervals to obtain 1 hour credit for each 50 minute interval. (b) Not more than fifteen (15) hours shall be non-interactive, correspondence courses. Computer on-line programs that involve on-line, real time, live or delayed participatory questioning or responses are not correspondence courses. (c) Five (5) hours of continuing education in laws and rules may be obtained once per biennium by attending one full day or eight (8) hours of a Board meeting (whichever is shorter) at which disciplinary hearings are conducted by the Board of Veterinary Medicine by complying with the following: 1. The licensee must sign in with the Executive Director of the Board or designee before the meeting day begins. 2. The licensee must remain in continuous attendance. 3. The licensee must sign out with the Executive Director of the Board or designee at the end of the meeting day or at such other earlier time as affirmatively authorized by the Board. A licensee may receive continuing education credit for attending the Board meeting only if he or she is attending on the date solely for the purpose of obtaining continuing education; he or she may not receive credit if appearing at the Board meeting for another purpose. (d) Not more than five (5) hours in complementary and alternative medicine modalities shall be credited toward the required number of continuing professional education hours referenced above. (e) A licensed veterinarian shall receive credit for no more than five (5) hours of continuing professional education in business or practice management courses during any biennium period. (f) A licensed veterinarian shall receive credit for no more than five (5) hours of continuing professional education in wellness and wellbeing seminars during any biennium period. WWW.FVMA.ORG |




Sick Employee Recommendations Sometimes, even when all precautions are taken, it’s still not enough. In these uncertain times, illness is all the more frightening. In the event that an employee becomes ill, we’ve compiled the following recommendations. Recommendations if an employee is sick but unable to be tested for COVID-19: • If an employee has a respiratory illness, we recommend they follow CDC recommendations for COVID-19. Recommendations if an employee tests positive for COVID-19: • No one should work while ill. • The county health department will receive the results from the testing laboratory or the patient’s health care provider and will then follow up with the positive patient. • The patient will either be hospitalized or isolated at home To be released from isolation, all three of the following are needed: • no fever for at least 72 hours without the use of fever reducing medication • other symptoms have improved • at least seven days have passed since symptoms first started

We encourage members to exercise prudent judgement in establishing protocols to ensure the safety of themselves, their teams, clients and patients. The CDC’s recommendations should be adhered to.

The FVMA website continues to be updated with information related to COVID-19 and your clients, patients, practice and license renewal. Stay informed by visiting fvma.org


2020 FVMA LEGISLATIVE By Richard B. Williams, DVM | FVMA Legislative Chair At the end of the 2020 Florida legislative session, the number of bills that passed both chambers was near a multi-decade low. By all reports, this is a byproduct of an intentional effort to reduce the volume of legislation that passes the Legislature. This year, the FVMA actively monitored almost 40 bills with two taking priority. 1. The FVMA’s priority bill SB 366 / HB 1015 was meant to address deficiencies in the Practice Act concerning the definition of the VCPR. It was introduced in both the Senate and the House of Representatives. 2. SB 1044 / HB 621 (Allie’s Law) was an animal cruelty bill. Both bills failed to pass during the legislative session. The FVMA’s priority bill has been brought before the state legislature over the last several years. The intention of the bill is to introduce language into the Practice Act, which would strengthen the definition of the VCPR and establish a definition of the physical examination. Over the years, House leadership has repeatedly refused to allow the bill to move forward. Prevailing feedback to the FVMA is that House leaders believe the FVMA bill could be restrictive to unregulated telemedicine, which they are in favor of. Allie's Law, SB 1044 / HB 621, was strongly opposed by the FVMA as originally written. The bill is an anti-animal cruelty bill involving only dogs and cats. It was presented to us as a simple bill that every veterinarian in the state should support and had many co-sponsors in both the House and Senate. Unfortunately, Allie’s Law was not as simple as it seems. We found it to be a bill that required mandatory reporting of animal cruelty, without reporter protection for the veterinarian. It also required reporting without direct knowledge of the actual abuse, or that the veterinarian contact the individuals suspected of abuse

During our 2020 Legislative Action days, FVMA delegates met with key legislators, including Representative Wengay "Newt" Newton (D -District 70) of St. Petersburg, Florida. Pictured left to right: Drs. Rachel Klemawesch, Don Howell, Don Morgan; Rep. Newton; Drs. Brooke Certa and Daniel Jones.


and require them to have their pet be examined within 24 hours. The FVMA felt such a scenario could potentially place veterinarians and their staff in a dangerous situation. That was not something we could support for the veterinarians of Florida. The FVMA also paid close attention to SB 48, the "Declaw Bill," which was introduced in the Senate without a companion bill in the House. SB 48 did not advance beyond its introduction. The FVMA’s position on declawing is identical to the AVMA’s revised policy. While the declawing of cats should be discouraged as an elective procedure, the AVMA and FVMA “acknowledge the veterinarian’s right to use professional judgement when deciding how to best protect their individual patients’ health and welfare.” The 2020 Florida Legislative Session concluded with 210 bills passed. Florida’s 2021 Legislative Session commences on March 2, 2021, and will remain in session for 60 days. As the legislative session commenced, the FVMA hosted a 40 member delegation of veterinarians, students of UFCVM, and FVMA leadership in Tallahassee for Legislative Action Days. This annual event is an integral aspect of the FVMA’s advocacy program as it places the association face-to-face with state senators and representatives. This gives the FVMA a chance to discuss the association’s legislative priorities and to advocate on behalf of the veterinary profession, animal health and well-being, and public health. We thank all members who joined us in Tallahassee at this year’s Legislative Action Days. If you’d like to learn how you can become involved next year, visit the FVMA website or email info@fvma.org.


The number of bills passing both chambers was near a multidecade low, which is, in part, a byproduct of an intentional effort to reduce the volume of legislation passing the Legislature.

Key Veterinary Bills That Passed SB 664 - Verification of Employment Eligibility • The bill provides that, beginning January 1, 2021, public employers, contractors and subcontractors must register with and use the E-Verify system to verify the work authorization status of all newly hired employees. • A public employer, contractor or subcontractor may not enter into a contract unless each party registers with and uses the E-Verify system. • The bill provides that, beginning January 1, 2021, a private employer must verify the employment eligibility of a person who has accepted an offer of employment or a contract employee upon the renewal or extension of his or her contract by either using the E-Verify system or requiring the person to provide the same documentation required by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services on its Employment Eligibility Verification form (Form I-9). HB 705 - Emergency Sheltering of Persons with Pets • The bill requires counties that maintain designated shelters to designate a shelter that can accommodate persons with pets. • The shelter must comply with applicable FEMA Disaster Assistance Policies and procedures and with safety procedures regarding the sheltering of pets established in the shelter component of both local and state comprehensive emergency management plans. SB 1084 - Emotional Support Animals • SB 1084 prohibits a landlord, to the extent required by federal law, rule or regulation, from denying housing to a person with

2020 Legislative Session Highlights • Passed: Emergency Sheltering of Persons with Pets • Passed: Emotional Support Animals in Homes • Passed: Open Government Sunset Review – Animal Medical Records • Failed: Declawing of Cats • Failed: Animal Cruelty Reporting (Allie’s Law) • Failed: Courtroom Animal Advocates

a disability or a disability-related need who has an animal that is required as support. • It defines an emotional support animal as an animal that is not required to be trained to assist a person with a disability but, by virtue of its presence, provides support to alleviate one or more identified symptoms or effects of a person’s disability. • The bill prohibits a landlord from charging a person with an emotional support animal additional fees. HB 7075 - Open Government Sunset Review - Animal Medical Records • Current law provides a public record exemption for certain animal medical records held by a state college of veterinary medicine that is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education. • The bill saves from repeal the public record exemption, which will repeal on October 2, 2020, if this bill does not become law.

Key Veterinary Bills That Failed SB 48 - Declawing of Cats • Prohibits the declawing of a cat unless there is a therapeutic purpose for the declawing. HB 621 / SB 1044 - Animal Cruelty (Allie's Law) • Requires veterinary technicians and employees or volunteers of an animal treatment provider who know or suspect cruelty to a dog or cat to report such knowledge or suspicions to a veterinarian. • A veterinarian who receives such a report must attempt an initial examination of the animal and then subsequently report animal cruelty to local law enforcement or an animal control agency. SB 1048 - Courtroom Animal Advocates • Provides for the appointment of an advocate, at the discretion of the court, for the interests of an animal under certain circumstances.

Pictured left to right: Dr. Marc Presnell, Dr. Mary Smart, Dr. Michael Epperson, Mr. Philip Hinkle and Dr. Richard Williams.






Evaluating Your Own Mental Health in a Challenging Career An Introduction from Bree Montana, BS, DVM, CCFP To all our colleagues, whether they're serving their community by staying at home or continuing to provide care: thank you. Thank you for being the voice of reason, the caring professional, the courageous helper that you are. You have dedicated your life to helping others and you are appreciated and seen. Please remember every life matters — your life matters too. Each of us needs to remember that we must care for ourselves so that we may extend our caring arms to help others. So many of us are experiencing frustration, confusion and fear as our schedules and work circumstances are undergoing weekly, daily and even hourly changes. How do we practice authentic, sustainable self-care in the face of our current chaos? The answer to this question has never been more important, especially for our dedicated colleagues who are working on the front lines of animal care. Take a few minutes to take the Professional Quality of Life (PROQOL) Scale Test, which can be found on page 26. It will help you understand where you are now and will help you recommit to your own personal wellness.

Here are some suggestions that I hope will help lower your compassion fatigue levels. I hope, in our shared crucible, we will forge healthier habits and a greater realization of what each of us, as individuals, can do to keep our hearts, bodies and spirits strong and resilient.

10 Things to Do Each Day 1. Get enough sleep - The daily updates and changes to our reality can be exhausting. If you find yourself feeling unusually tired, it is OK to allow yourself an earlier bedtime and/or an extra nap during the day. 2. Get enough to eat - Stress is hard on our bodies. Prepping healthy snacks, carrying them to work and having them handy around the house can help us turn our stress eating into self-care opportunities. 3. Do some light exercise - Try something new. There are so many free, fun, online exercise options right now. Text a couple of friends and schedule a FaceTime or Zoom group meetup to take a class together! 4. Vary the work that you do - Variety is especially important


if we’re working from home. Schedule your day in sections, allowing some virtual client interface time, followed by some quiet time, then perhaps a more labor intensive form of work. 5. Do something pleasurable - Every day pleasures make everything better. Incorporate those smells that you love, music that moves you, a relaxing bath and, perhaps, some time reading a favorite author or watching a favorite show into every day. 6. Focus on what you did well - Check in with yourself at the end of every day — what did you do well today? Did you learn something new? Did you handle something in a betterthan-expected fashion?

7. Learn from your mistakes - Learning opportunities come from more than those courses that we sign up for — we are offered new learning opportunities with every difficult case and situation that we see. 8. Share a private joke - Find the humor — it’s there — sometimes we just have to dig a bit deeper! 9. Pray, meditate or relax - Schedule at least 15 minutes of “me time” every day — bring your focus to your breathing and allow your body to relax with each breath. Moving from head

to toe, take as long as you can to relax every step of the way. If you find your mind wandering, recognize that little monkey and bring your focus back into your body. There’s no shame and no blame. Just take another breath. 10. Support a colleague - Sometimes our greatest inspiration comes from a bit of perspiration. Reach out to connect with a colleague. Check in and share your experiences. We are stronger together!

Our work can be overwhelming. Our challenge is to maintain our resilience, so that we can keep doing our good work with care, energy and compassion. For additional mental well-being support, check out the VIN Foundation’s Vets4Vets and Support4Support programs. One of their free support options may make your day a little brighter as we wait for this storm to pass.

FVMA Note: The following test will give you a better idea of whether or not you may be impacted by low compassion satisfaction, burnout or secondary traumatic stress. PROQOL gives the following definitions of these conditions.

Compassion Satisfaction - Compassion satisfaction is about the pleasure you derive from being able

to do your work well. Higher scores on this scale represent a greater satisfaction related to your ability to be an effective caregiver in your job.

Burnout - Burnout is associated with feelings of hopelessness and difficulties in dealing with work or in doing your job effectively. They can reflect the feeling that your efforts make no difference, or they can be associated with a very high workload or a non-supportive work environment. Secondary Traumatic Stress - Secondary traumatic stress is about your work-related,

secondary exposure to extremely, or traumatically, stressful events. For example, you may repeatedly hear stories about the traumatic things that happen to other people. If your work puts you directly in the path of danger (such as field work in a war or area of civil violence), this is not secondary exposure; your exposure is primary. However, if you are exposed to others’ traumatic events as a result of your work (as a therapist, an emergency worker, etc.), this is secondary exposure. Symptoms may include being afraid, having difficulty sleeping, having images of the upsetting event pop into your mind or avoiding things that remind you of the event.

Consider sharing this test with colleagues and friends in the veterinary profession. We invite all veterinary professionals to attend our upcoming FVMA conferences, which continue to feature professional wellness CE tracks.






PROFESSIONAL QUALITY OF LIFE SCALE (PROQOL) PROFESSIONAL QUALITY OF LIFE SCALE (PROQO L) COMPASSION SATISFACTION AND COMPASSION FATIGUE (PROQOL) VERSION 5 (2009) When you [help] people you have direct contact with their lives. As you may have found, your compassion for those you [help] can affect you in positive and negative ways. Below are some questions about your experiences, both positive and negative, as a [helper]. Consider each of the following questions about you and your current work situation. Select the number that honestly reflects how frequently you experienced these things in the last 30 days.

1=Never 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30.




5=Very Often

I am happy. I am preoccupied with more than one person I [help]. I get satisfaction from being able to [help] people. I feel connected to others. I jump or am startled by unexpected sounds. I feel invigorated after working with those I [help]. I find it difficult to separate my personal life from my life as a [helper]. I am not as productive at work because I am losing sleep over traumatic experiences of a person I [help]. I think that I might have been affected by the traumatic stress of those I [help]. I feel trapped by my job as a [helper]. Because of my [helping], I have felt "on edge" about various things. I like my work as a [helper]. I feel depressed because of the traumatic experiences of the people I [help]. I feel as though I am experiencing the trauma of someone I have [helped]. I have beliefs that sustain me. I am pleased with how I am able to keep up with [helping] techniques and protocols. I am the person I always wanted to be. My work makes me feel satisfied. I feel worn out because of my work as a [helper]. I have happy thoughts and feelings about those I [help] and how I could help them. I feel overwhelmed because my case [work] load seems endless. I believe I can make a difference through my work. I avoid certain activities or situations because they remind me of frightening experiences of the people I [help]. I am proud of what I can do to [help]. As a result of my [helping], I have intrusive, frightening thoughts. I feel "bogged down" by the system. I have thoughts that I am a "success" as a [helper]. I can't recall important parts of my work with trauma victims. I am a very caring person. I am happy that I chose to do this work.

© B. Hudnall Stamm, 2009-2012. Professional Quality of Life: Compassion Satisfaction and Fatigue Version 5 (ProQOL). www.proqol.org. This test may be freely copied as long as (a) author is credited, (b) no changes are made, and (c) it is not sold. Those interested in using the test should visit 1 www.proqol.org to verify that the copy they are using is the most current version of the test.


PROFESSIONAL QUALITY OF LIFE SCALE (PROQOL) In this section, you will score your test so you understand the interpretation for you. To find your score on each section, total the questions listed on the left and then find your score in the table on the right of the section.

Compassion Satisfaction Scale Copy your rating on each of these questions on to this table and add them up. When you have added them up, you can find your score on the table to the right.

3. 6. 12. 16. 18. 20. 22. 24. 27. 30.

____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____

T o t a l : _____

The sum of my Compassion Satisfaction questions is

And my Compassion Satisfaction level is

22 or less


Between 23 and 41


42 or more


The sum of my Burnout Questions is

And my Burnout level is

22 or less


Between 23 and 41


42 or more


The sum of my Secondary Trauma questions is

And my Secondary Traumatic Stress level is

Burnout Scale On the burnout scale you will need to take an extra step. Starred items are “reverse scored.” If you scored the item 1, write a 5 beside it. The reason we ask you to reverse the scores is because scientifically the measure works better when these questions are asked in a positive way though they can tell us more about their negative form. For example, question 1. “I am happy” tells us more about the effects You Change of helping Wrote to 5 when you 1 2 4 are not 3 3 happy so 4 2 you reverse 5 1 the score

*1. *4. 8. 10. *15. *17. 19. 21. 26. *29.

____ = ____ = ____ ____ ____ = ____ = ____ ____ ____ ____ =

____ ____ ____ ____




T o t a l : _____

Secondary Traumatic Stress Scale Just like you did on Compassion Satisfaction, copy your rating on each of these questions on to this table and add them up. When you have added them up, you can find your score on the table to the right.

2. 5. 7. 9. 11. 13. 14. 23. 25. 28.

____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____

T o t a l : _____

22 or less


Between 23 and 41


42 or more


© B. Hudnall Stamm, 2009-2012. Professional Quality of Life: Compassion Satisfaction and Fatigue Version 5 (ProQOL). www.proqol.org. This test may be freely copied as long as (a) author is credited, (b) no changes are made, and (c) it is not sold. Those interested in using the test should visit 3 www.proqol.org to verify that the copy they are using is the most current version of the test.





Practice Pulse QUESTION: Should an exam be performed with every rabies vaccination? Is an exam within the last year considered acceptable? If a client declines an annual exam, can a rabies vaccination still be given? A: The standard of practice for a limited service (vaccination) clinic requires a physical exam be performed on every animal to be vaccinated. There seems to be no reason why the standard for a regular clinic would be less. 61G18-15.007 Minimum Standards for Limited-Service Veterinary Medical Practices. (1) The term “limited-service veterinary medical practice” shall mean a privately or publicly supported vaccination clinic where a veterinarian performs for a limited time vaccinations and/or immunizations against disease on multiple animals, and where the veterinarian may also perform microchipping and preventative procedures for parasitic control, and shall not mean a premise otherwise permitted by the Board. (2) The Limited-Service permittee shall register each clinic with the Board of Veterinary Medicine by name, address, date of clinic, time and duration, at least 28 days prior to offering a limited-service clinic. A copy of the limitedservice permit shall be clearly visible at each limited service clinic held during its hours of operation and posted at the main office where the records are stored. (3) A veterinarian must remain on site throughout the duration of a limited-service clinic and must maintain autonomy for all medical decisions made. A physical examination and history must be taken for each patient receiving veterinary medical care at a limited-service clinic. Recommendations and preventive medicine protocols must be developed from current accepted veterinary medical practice. The veterinarian is responsible for proper immunization and parasitic procedures and the completeness of recommendations made to the public by the paraprofessional staff that the veterinarian supervises or employs. The veterinarian is responsible for consultation and referral of clients when disease is detected or suspected. The annual exam is a fairly common standard of practice. If the animal was examined by the veterinarian/practice less than 1 year ago, another exam may not be necessary. If a client declines an annual exam, the veterinarian should explain that the standard of practice requires that examination be performed before providing the vaccination. If the veterinarian gives the rabies vaccination without having performed some type of physical examination and there is an adverse reaction that could have been avoided with a physical


examination, the veterinarian will not be able to defend him/ herself.

QUESTION: What type of signature is needed on rabies vaccination certificates? I recently had a situation where a receptionist changed a patient's weight in the medical record and provided the certificate to a client without my knowledge. Should I be signing each rabies certificate personally? What is the recommended policy on protecting signature stamps if those are used? A: A rabies vaccination certificate can be signed using a rubber stamp: (3)  Upon vaccination against rabies, the licensed veterinarian shall provide the animal’s owner and the animal control authority with a rabies vaccination certificate. Each animal control authority and veterinarian shall use the “Rabies Vaccination Certificate” of the National Association of State Public Health Veterinarians (NASPHV) or an equivalent form approved by the local government that contains all the information required by the NASPHV Rabies Vaccination Certificate. The veterinarian who administers the rabies vaccine to an animal as required under this section may affix his or her signature stamp in lieu of an actual signature. A signature stamp should be protected to the same extent as blank certificates or your prescription pad. If you leave these out in the open and people forge certificates or prescriptions, you may be deemed to have acted negligently.

QUESTION: We recently had a client come in and ask us if we could give her a copy of her pet's rabies certificate. Our receptionist fulfilled this request for her. The next day the same client's daughter came in and said that she lost the copy and asked for another. She then told the receptionist that the weight we had on the certificate was incorrect and asked that we change it. The receptionist changed it and reprinted the certificate with the lower weight, based on what the client was telling her. The receptionist then told the client's daughter that she could not permanently change it, until she brings the pet in for a weight check and reverted the weight back. This client gave her new apartment complex an old rabies certificate in addition to the new one with the lowered (unverified) weight listed on it. The apartment complex is now calling and asking what is going on and which weight/certificate is correct. A: Our legal counsel advises the following: 1. A receptionist or other clinic staff can perform the clerical act of reprinting or copying a patient record or certificate, but

GOT A QUESTION? THE FVMA CAN HELP. One of the benefits of an FVMA membership is our Helpline (800.992.3862), which is available to members Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. The concerns voiced on our Helpline provide the FVMA staff with insight into the challenges our members face. In this feature, we will highlight topics from the questions we received in preceding weeks in an effort to keep our members up to date on current concerns as well as regulatory and legislative changes. should NEVER make any change without the express direction/ instruction of the veterinarian. 2. The moment the daughter came back with the story of the “lost” certificate that should have been a red flag. The receptionist should not have changed the weight because that would make it easy for the client to use that certificate for another animal. 3. The practice should contact the owner and ask that the owner bring in the animal and the certificates. The owner should be informed that the complex has called the practice, but that they (the practice) will not do anything without first giving the owner the opportunity to correct any mistake.

QUESTION: We have experienced a reoccurring issue; pharmacies keep calling to request DEA numbers for the filling of non-controlled drugs. A handful of pharmacies are now saying our DEA number must be written on a prescription or it won’t be filled. Has something changed? A: Nothing has changed. It is simply an unfortunate reality that many pharmacies (and drug wholesalers) have adopted the DEA registration number as a very handy (and unique) identification number in their systems. Individual veterinarians can complain to the pharmacies (or the Board of Pharmacy) or they can comply, in order not to inconvenience themselves and their clients.

QUESTION: I'm interested in fullfilling the mandatory portion of the Florida required CE to renew my license. I have plenty of CE, but I just got my license by endorsement in Florida last November (2019). I didn't realize I would already need those required credits to renew in 2020. Any information you can provide would be much appreciated. A: You need to renew your license, but you do not need the CE. Referencing 61G18-16.002(5):

QUESTION: I wanted to inquire about a question that was asked in The Advocate, Issue 5 of 2019, regarding veterinary technicians performing dental extractions. Recently, I was told by a potential employer at a job interview that as long as a licensed veterinarian is “supervising” a dental procedure, then technicians can perform extractions in the state of Florida. However, after reading The Advocate, it sounds like, legally, that isn’t the case. A: The definition of the term “veterinary medicine” in §474.202(13) includes dentistry. Therefore, anyone performing dental extractions would have to be a veterinarian, or be otherwise exempt under the Veterinary Practice Act. Under §474.203(7), a veterinary aide may “…render auxiliary or supporting assistance under the responsible supervision of a licensed veterinarian...” The question then becomes whether actually performing the procedure can be interpreted as “rendering auxiliary or supporting assistance.” Although the Board’s rule on delegable tasks does not specifically state what can or can’t be delegated (except for certain vaccinations), the general consensus and understanding is that a veterinary technician can’t perform surgery (i.e. neuter a cat), but they can close up an incision after surgery is completed. Applying the same logic leads to the conclusion that the non-veterinarian (no matter how eminently qualified) should not perform dental surgery.

QUESTION: Our immediate area is under a rabies alert. A 10-month old feline was attacked in his yard by a raccoon, which was killed by the owners. The racoon tested positive for rabies. What should my course of action be in response to this? A: You should forward the information to the Florida Department of Health. They will work with your County Department of Health to ensure the safety of the people involved and make a determination of how to handle the rabies-exposed kitten.

“A licensed veterinarian shall not be required to complete a continuing education requirement prior to the first renewal of his license, but it shall be required prior to any subsequent renewal.” You will need to get your 30 hours of CE during the 2020-2022 biennium.

END NOTE: The ultimate responsibility in the practice of veterinary medicine lies with the licensed veterinarian. Professional discretion must always be exercised. WWW.FVMA.ORG |






IMPORTANT NOTICE – If you are unable to check any box on this Inspection Checklist, you need to IMMEDIATELY address that area so your establishment can pass an unannounced state inspection. Call the FVMA toll-free at 800.992.3862 with questions. This inspection checklist is provided as a service to FVMA members. This document is a useful tool to help our members prepare their establishments for an unannounced inspection. For additional information on the state inspection rules and regulations, contact the state Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Division of Regulation at 850.487.1395, contact the FVMA toll-free at 800.992.3862 or visit our website at www.fvma.org.





Veterinarian(s) at this establishment possesses a current, active Florida license This establishment has a current, valid premises permit License(s) of each veterinarian(s) is conspicuously displayed This establishment’s valid premise permit is conspicuously displayed This establishment does not employ unlicensed person(s) in the practice of veterinary medicine Exterior signs legible and easily identifies location Facility is clean and in good repair Emergency care telephone number is visible and easily seen from exterior Grounds are clean and orderly


Restroom(s) is clean and orderly Office is clean and orderly Emergency telephone answering service is available 24 hours a day

Examination Room

Examination area is clean and orderly Lined waste receptacles are in all exam rooms Disposable towels and sink are available (sink in the restroom is not acceptable) Examination table is constructed of smooth impervious material


Area and equipment are clean and orderly Sterile instruments, drapes, caps and masks Operating table appropriate for proposed use and constructed of smooth and impervious material Oxygen and equipment are available for immediate use Anesthesia equipment Holding areas capable of sanitation/proper ventilation/sufficient lighting/size consistent with welfare of animal Sanitary cans lined with disposable bags Effective insect and rodent control Carcass disposal meeting local sanitary codes Emergency lighting which includes at minimum, a functioning rechargeable battery-operated light Fire extinguisher with current annual inspection tag Refrigeration to store drugs, biologicals, lab samples, reagents and other perishable items Handling and disposal of biohazardous waste in accordance with Rule 64E-16, Florida Administrative Code [61G18-15.002(2)(a)15.] Veterinarians must furnish clients with permanent address for obtaining medical records


Clean and orderly pharmacy area X-ray machine; 100 MA minimum Blood storage or donor is available Developing tanks Accurate controlled substances log Monitoring of exposure of personnel to radiation required Accurate patient medical records FACITILITES FOR SURGERY OR OUTSIDE SERVICE If controlled substances are on the premises, a locking, secure cabinet for storage Must be clean and orderly DEA certificate kept on premises Sterilization of surgical equipment by autoclave or gas method Segregated area for storage of expired drugs Operating table appropriate for use and constructed of smooth, impervious Disposable needles and syringes surface All drugs stored on the premises are properly labeled with drug name, strength Well lighted and expiration date Oxygen and equipment for its administration All drugs are properly labeled and dispensed in child-proof containers unless HOSPITAL WARDS OR OUTSIDE SERVICE otherwise requested in writing Area must be clean and orderly MEDICAL RECORDS Holding area(s) size must be consistent with the welfare of the animal Medical records as required by 61G18-18.002 Florida Administrative Code Well lighted [61G18-15.002(2)(a)6.] Proper ventilation



Urinalysis equipment or outside lab available Hematology facilities or outside lab available Blood chemistry or outside lab available Microbiological capability or outside lab available

OPTIONAL ITEMS REQUIRING INSPECTION Reception area is free from hazards Grooming area is clean and orderly Kitchen/food area is sanitary


Clean and secure No hazards



VETERINARIAN WANTED – TALLAHASSEE, FL: Full-time small animal associate veterinarian is needed at Novey Animal Hospital. We are looking for a veterinarian to join our team that enjoys practicing high-quality medicine and surgery in a client-centered, compassionate and collaborative manner. We are located in Tallahassee, Florida, home of the state capitol, FSU, FAMU, and are only a short drive to the beach. Tallahassee is ranked in the top 100 best places to live in America and one of the best places to raise a family. We are a well-established hospital, with great clientele and a well-trained staff. We are equipped with digital dental radiography, digital radiography, ultrasound, laser, and more, with a specialty hospital and multiple emergency hospitals within minutes. Our associates enjoy great benefits, including a 4.5-day work week, no emergency on-call, health insurance, 401(k) match, and more! Recent and new graduates are welcome; mentorship will be provided and collaboration amongst our doctors is highly valued and expected. Please contact: Larry Novey, larrynovey@hotmail.com or (850) 508-2171. (2/20; ID#12890) VETERINARIAN WANTED – NAPLES, FL: Full-Time Associate Wanted Gulfshore Animal Hospital, an AAHA 3 doctor practice in beautiful Naples, FL, is seeking a full-time associate to fill our third doctor vacancy. Established in 1971, Dr. David Ball and Dr. Kim Schemmer have owned Gulfshore Animal Hospital since 1987. We have a 4350 sq. ft. hospital and boarding facility located on the main highway in central Naples. Our practice is computerized with the most current ImproMed software, capable of paperless medical record keeping. Our practice is equipped with the latest technology including digital dental radiology, laser surgery, K-Laser therapy, Sound digital radiology, Idexx in-house laboratory equipment, and a GE laptop ultrasound. We have an exceptional clientele who demand, and can afford, quality comprehensive veterinary care. Our practice is committed to attention to detail and exceptional client communication and service. We have an excellent management team composed of the current owners and a practice manager of 15 years who are committed to a team approach to the practice of veterinary medicine. This management team is prepared to and capable of training the new associate in the management procedures and practices that have contributed to this very successful practice over the years. The candidate must have leadership skills, share the approach to veterinary medicine described above. This is a tremendous opportunity for the right individual. Our practice address is 3560 Tamiami Trail North, Naples, FL 34103 and our website is www.gulfshoreanimalhospital.com. Interested candidates should email a letter of introduction and current resume to drdave@gulfshoreanimalhospital.com. (2/20; ID#26066) VETERINARIAN WANTED – CENTRAL FLORIDA: Integrative Animal Hospital of Central Florida and Animal Hospital at Baldwin Park are established, quality driven veterinary hospitals dedicated to strengthening the bond between clients and their animal companions. Work alongside a well-established, cooperative team. Email resume to: kristine@baldwinparkvet.com. (2/20; ID#2934) Practices for Sale ASSOCIATE VETERINARIAN NEEDED - WEEKI WACHEE, FL: We are a busy small animal, solo doctor practice, seeking a confident, associate Central Solo dr, prx.of $632K+ 2019 gross.and RE veterinarian to aidFL: in meeting theSA needs our growing practice clients. Our focus is (FL11S) on diagnostics not band-aids. We are a full-service available hospital equipped with all new IDEXX lab & X-ray equipment with a full in-house pharmacy. We offer ultrasound, surgical laser, therapy laser, Northeast NC, near VA: $1M+ gross, 2 dr., dental, soft tissue & orthopedic surgical services. Compensation based on attractive & land (NC66G) experience. All repliesfacility treated with utmost confidence. For consideration, email your resume to: naturecoastaw@gmail.com. (2/20; ID#18346)

RELIEF VETERINARIAN WANTED South Central GA: $959K+ gross, up 5% in 2019,

1.5 doctor practice. Nice– OCALA, facility FL: & equipment RELIEF VETERINARIAN WANTED Relief Vet needed for Wednesdays 9-2pm and occasional vacation fill in. Small animal low volume (GA14F) single doctor practice. Small friendly staff, perfect for retirees or new moms looking to keep current. Please call or text (352) 812-1833. (2/20; ID #1830) Hinesville, GA: SOLD! Congratulations to Dr. RELIEF VETERINARIAN: "Got to get away? "VetRxRelief , 37 years experience David Beatie on the sale of his practice, Beatie small animal Veterinarian.Please call 321-508-3879 or Vetgator@gmail.com. Animal Clinic, to Dr. Christa Parrish-Ahrens! (2/20; ID #2187)


Spartanburg, SOLD! Congratulations to Dr. EQUIPMENT FOR SALE SC: – MIAMI BEACH, FL: Heska Hematrue CBC machineMaiolo for sale, practically new-of still under warranty; priced $1,200 but for the sale his practice, Ark Animal will accept offers. Will USPS Parcel Selectto Ground. Call Miyahira! 305-542-9515. Hospital atship Boiling Springs, Dr. Lon (2/20; ID #16738)

PRACTICE FOR SALE Jacksonville, FL: SOLD! Congratulations to Dr.

PRACTICE FOR SALE - SW BROWARD COUNTY: Small animal clinic Don Cook on the sale of his practice, Arlington located in affluent SW Broward County; FL. Practice has been in current Animal to2Dr. An Nguyen! location for over 20 Hospital years. 1200 sf exam rooms, 1 surgical room, grooming room, treatment room and kennel room. Pictures available. Please contract Stuart M. Auerbach, DDS Henry Schein Professional 1610 Frederica Road, Saint SimonsPractice Island,Transitions. GA 31522 Toll Free: (800) 333-1984 | www.simmonsinc.com Stuart.Auerbach@henryschein.com Cell: 954.298.4575 (2/20; ID #18359) Email: southeast@simmonsinc.com PRACTICE FOR SALE – MELBOURNE, FL: Turn Key, fully equipped Licensed inbeach, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, hospital , Space Coast, close to marina, and shopping. Equipment also and South Carolina Real Estate Broker for sale separately. Call 321-508-3879 or VetGator@gmail.com. (2/20; ID #2187)

Practices for Sale Central FL: Solo dr, SA prx. $632K+ 2019 gross. RE available (FL11S) Northeast NC, near VA: $1M+ gross, 2 dr., attractive facility & land (NC66G) South Central GA: $959K+ gross, up 5% in 2019, 1.5 doctor practice. Nice facility & equipment (GA14F) Hinesville, GA: SOLD! Congratulations to Dr. David Beatie on the sale of his practice, Beatie Animal Clinic, to Dr. Christa Parrish-Ahrens! Spartanburg, SC: SOLD! Congratulations to Dr. Maiolo for the sale of his practice, Ark Animal Hospital at Boiling Springs, to Dr. Lon Miyahira! Jacksonville, FL: SOLD! Congratulations to Dr. Don Cook on the sale of his practice, Arlington Animal Hospital to Dr. An Nguyen! 1610 Frederica Road, Saint Simons Island, GA 31522 Toll Free: (800) 333-1984 | www.simmonsinc.com Email: southeast@simmonsinc.com Licensed in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina Real Estate Broker

Best Friends Forever Pet Moving Solutions Worldwide • Nationwide airanimal.com

Photo credit: www.123rf.com/profile_sam74100

Florida Practice Listings! -Central Florida– North of Tampa– Well established, Solo Dr., $888K gross in 2019. In-house lab, digital x-ray, dental xray, 4400 sq. ft. free standing hospital w/ 3 exam rooms, Prx and RE available in a turnkey operation. Price just reduced. -S.E. Coast– Just minutes from the beach….Solo Dr. grossing ~$630K. Lease space with 4 exam rooms, very well equipped, served the community for 40 years. Approximately $160K ADI. -New-East Coast– Solo Dr. Prx with RE 2019 gross $1.07mm Very high net, well equipped, tenured staff. $275K ADI -New-Equine Practice– Brevard Co.-Rare opportunity to buy a turnkey Equine practice on the central east coast. 1 to 1.5 Dr. 2019 gross $670K. Barn, stalls, treatment area, paddocks, office. -New– SW Coast– Growing 2 Dr. Prx in very desirable Gulf Coast community. 2019 gross ~$1.5mm. Beautiful custom built hospital, 3846 sq. ft., 3 exam rooms, digital x-ray, dental x-ray, in house lab and more. Prx and RE both available.

Veterinary Practice Sales, Acquisitions & Valuations

PALM BEACH COUNTY: Solo, small animal practice on the southeast coast! +$535k gross and +$111k ADI in most recent year. Appx. 1,150 sq. ft. leased facility. Great opportunity in a vibrant, affluent community! [FL95] VOLUSIA COUNTY: Family owned, small animal practice with legacy to build upon! +$697k gross and +$204k ADI in most recent year. Appx. 3,368 sq. ft. leased facility. Room to grow! [FL96] LEON COUNTY: Long-established, welcoming practice with growth potential! +$744k gross and +$129k ADI in most recent year. Appx. 1,978 sq. ft. facility with RE. Build your own legacy! [FL97] VOLUSIA COUNTY: Multi-DVM, small animal practice in growing area! Over $1.9 million gross and $282k ADI in most recent year. Approx. 3,086 sq. ft. facility with RE. Seller financing available! [FL98]

Are Corporate Groups contacting you about buying your Practice? If so, let us help make sure you get your best deal!!!

Contact Dr. Richard Alker for further practice information.

850.814.9962 or Richard@tpsgsales.com Showcase Properties of Central Florida, Broker


psbroker.com | 800.636.4740 | info@psbroker.com


Where Clients Become Family.



Siegel TLC Animal Clinic Sale

Thankful technology helped us experience a joyous remote closing during COVID-19.


Not only was I represented well, I made a new friend. Thank you team!

-Dr. Brian Schillig



Repeat Client


912.268.2701 Hello@practicesalesadvisors.com www.practicesalesadvisors.com Rebecca Robinson Davis, CBI PRINCIPAL BROKER


Florida Veterinary Medical Association 7207 Monetary Drive Orlando, FL 32809

PRSRT STD U.S. Postage PAID Orlando, FL Permit #793

YOU’LL NEVER BE THE LEAD DOG WORKING FOR SOMEONE ELSE. Being an owner will help you retire debt faster while creating the practice of your dreams. You can establish the quality of care and service, choose your schedule, and achieve significant financial success.

Is it time for you to break from the pack? Since 1977, the experts at Simmons have helped veterinarians buy their own practice – even those burdened with student debt. Trust Simmons to guide you through the buying process.

Call us today at 800.333.1984 for a complimentary and confidential conversation.

simmonsinc.com It’s your future - Own it.