22 Oct, 2015 Terminating the Veterinarian-Owner Relationship
In most situations, veterinarians are entitled to terminate their professional relationship with the owner of the animal. There are however, circumstances that complicate this decision, like the obligation to treat emergencies, completion of a current treatment, referral of the animal to another veterinarian or the triggering of a veterinary board complaint, we recommend that our members contact us for specific advice before terminating any owner relationship.
21 Oct, 2015 The informed consent to treatment form
A properly constructed informed consent to treatment form is fundamental to setting down the relationship (contract to treatment) between the veterinarian. A badly written consent form that does not set the correct tone can lead to failed relationships, disputes, stress, veterinary board complaints and litigation. The majority of the consent forms seen by the VDA in veterinary practice are of a surprisingly poor standard. The mandatory VDA consent form contains five clauses that provide vital protection to members.
20 Oct, 2015 Stress management
Upset and angry owners, disputes, veterinary board complaints and malpractice litigation creates substantial stress for veterinarians. This negative energy can easily lead to depression, feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness, burnout and thoughts of suicide. The VDA has a mental wellness counselor on its panel, who assists VDA members when they are faced with situations in which they are unable to cope. Although the VDA removes a substantial amount of stress from its members by taking over the management of disputes, complaints and litigation so that the member can concentrate on being a veterinarian, cumulative stress in veterinary management needs proper management.
19 Oct, 2015 The three main differences between VDA and other sources of malpractice insurance cover
The first difference between the VDA and other providers of veterinary insurance cover is risk management. By having a 24/7 hotline and 24/7 email contact with the VDA's panel of specially-trained veterinarian VDA Consultants, members are able to obtain advice and guidance with incidents and disputes with owners. Effective management leads to more satisfied owners, less stress and better practice control. The second difference is Alternate Dispute Resolution. Every dissatisfied owner is offered the VDA's free ADR process, which answers their concerns about their animal's treatment and whether the veterinarian met the required minimum standards of care. The third difference is the VDA's owner compensation fund. In the event that a VDA member did not meet the required standards of care and caused financial damages to the owner, the VDA compensates the owner for the loss.
18 Oct, 2015 The Minimum Required Standard of Care
An easy concept to define, but a complicated and sometimes difficult standard to apply objectively to specific cases. Standards of care involve complex issues of law, medicine, usage, schools of thought, demographics and the specific circumstances of each case. With each notification of an incident, dispute or adverse treatment outcome, the VDA analyses the case to determine whether minimum standards have been met. The VDA uses each notification as an educational opportunity for its member.