NAVC Conference

By David Thill
May, 2016

Education, new resources available for veterinary community

The North American Veterinary Community chose its recent Conference in Orlando, Fla., to launch an official, peer-reviewed journal, Today’s Veterinary Technician.

“Our mission is to provide medical insights and techniques that help improve skill sets and professional development specific to the veterinary technician audience,” said Thomas M. Bohn, chief executive officer of the NAVC. “Readers may earn CE through opportunities covering a variety of practical nursing and technical skills in areas such as emergency and critical care, dentistry and nutrition, presented through peer-reviewed quality articles and tutorials from experts in veterinary medicine.” The new publication will complement NAVC’s other official journal, Today’s Veterinary Practice, he added.


Annual Conference

More than 17,000 veterinary professionals, industry partners, students and guests took advantage of more than 1,200 hours of continuing education sessions, hands-on laboratories, “Meet the Professor” luncheons, Masterclasses and “Behind the Scenes” tours at NAVC’s 33rd annual Conference. 


Attendance included professionals in the following categories from all 50 U.S. states and more than 80 countries:

• 7,087 veterinarians

• 1,613 veterinary technicians

• 601 practice managers

• 407 support staff

• 894 veterinary and veterinary technician students

• 4,276 exhibitors

• 2,328 family members and guests

• 122 media representatives


The Conference wrapped up with a ceremony in which Melinda Merck, DVM, assumed the role as president of the NAVC board of directors for 2016-17. Other board members for 2016-17 are:

• Christine Navarre, DVM, MS, DACVIM (LAIM), immediate past president

• Gail Gibson, VMD, president-elect

• Leann Kuebelbeck, DVM, DACVS, vice president

• Laurel Kaddatz, DVM, treasurer

• Paige Allen, MS, RVT, director

• Harold Davis, BA, RVT, VTS (ECC), director

• Cheryl Good, DVM, director


Next year’s Conference will be held at the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) in Orlando.

“I am looking forward to an exciting year for the NAVC,” said Merck. “We have so many things we are working on, as well as our move to the beautiful new venue at the Orange County Convention Center.

“I love the challenge and commitment that we have to finding new and innovative ways to provide educational opportunities for the veterinary community. It is exciting to work with such a great group of people with passion and synergy to elevate our profession and affect positive change.”


Telemedicine’s Role to be Explored

Veterinary Innovation Council plans to demonstrate the potential of a developing practice in animal healthcare

The Veterinary Innovation Council, established in October by the North American Veterinary Community, will begin its mission to improve animal healthcare in all segments (caregivers, suppliers, consumers, etc.) by focusing on telemedicine.

The council intends to develop a pilot program that demonstrates the potential to use telemedicine in animal healthcare. In addition, it will work to create model laws and regulations “to assist state veterinary medical boards [in] their effort to establish a regulatory framework to cover this new area of practice,” says Adrian Hochstadt, JD, CAE, executive director of the VIC.

NAVC formed the council because of an “unmet need for a veterinary organization that works collaboratively with an industrywide focus on positive change and innovative solutions across professional boundaries,” says Hochstadt. “We recognize there is significant untapped potential for the utilization of applications and tools that would allow more animals quality healthcare.”

The VIC will convene individuals from across the profession to tackle global challenges facing the animal health industry, he says. The council’s board of directors – 11 members in total – includes veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and a medical doctor, among others. “We feel a cross section of perspectives and backgrounds is essential to creating an environment that fosters innovation.”

Hochstadt says that the group’s findings, as well as guidelines it drafts to help veterinarians effectively use telemedicine, will be available to the broader veterinary community.

When the council meets in August, it will discuss future initiatives, as well as the possibility of granting an annual veterinary innovation award “to recognize an individual or a team who invented, championed, or delivered major innovations in products, procedures, or services for the benefit of animal health and the veterinary profession,” says Hochstadt.

“Innovation is very much part of the culture and fabric of [NAVC],” he says. In fact, it is one of NAVC’s six defining pillars, along with commitment, excellence, stewardship, communication, and authenticity.

David Thill is a contributing editor for Veterinary Advantage.

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