Veterinary specialists are in short supply, according to a 2018 JAVMA article and the anecdotal experience of many veterinary professionals. JAVMA pointed out that many graduating veterinary students apply for internships and residencies, but most aren’t lucky enough to match with a program and are forced to re-evaluate their career goals. Those who are accepted and complete a training program usually go into private or corporate practice, leaving university positions unfilled—hampering the institutions’ ability to train future specialists.
In response, some private and corporate specialty hospitals now offer or are expanding their residency programs, and several universities now require their residents to return after completion and work for them. Some programs are trying to streamline their coursework and are offering partial online learning so they can train more specialists at one time. Despite these efforts, specialty training takes years, and correcting the supply and demand balance won’t happen anytime soon. If your practice struggles with a specialist shortage, or from an overall short-staffed environment, VESPECON can help.
VESPECON is a telemedicine platform offering virtual video chat consultations with our specialist team, whose members guide veterinarians through complex case management from start to finish. While most veterinarians who use this service are general practitioners looking to elevate their in-clinic care, or needing extra help and direction with specific cases, we can also provide collaboration with other specialists. If you work in a multi-specialty practice, but are missing key specialty areas, or if you work in a stand-alone, single specialty facility, we can fill in the gaps.
Managing pet diseases often requires a multidisciplinary team, which we can provide for you virtually. With this access at your fingertips, you don’t have to wait weeks to get answers by referring your patients to outside facilities, and you can fast-track and streamline your patient’s diagnostics and treatment without using valuable time calling all over town.
On the other side of VESPECON, we maintain a network of in-person specialists to see patients who have gone through the virtual consulting process, but need advanced care beyond the primary veterinarian’s capabilities. When you join this provider network, we ask that you leave spots open in your schedule specifically for our patients, which gives you the advantage of patients who have already undergone a full workup—guided by a consulting, boarded specialist—so you don’t have to repeat tests or ask patients to return for additional procedures. We help to eliminate repeat visits that clog up your schedule, and most clients will know what to expect, which cuts down on the time your staff educates them.
Let us do the work for you
Additional services that VESPECON provides include practice-to-practice communications, records transfers, ongoing consultations, and concierge scheduling services. When a referring veterinarian uses our services, our consultants will recommend an in-person referral at the right time, and then our concierge team takes over to schedule clients directly with one of our in-person specialty providers. This eliminates burdens on the client to find and choose a specialist with availability, on the veterinarian to call around and find an opening, and on your staff to field those phone calls.
In addition to filling your schedule with cases lined up for advanced care, we facilitate communication between your referring veterinarian and your team to provide the case information you need. You can speak directly to the consulting specialist who is handing off the case if you need further details using our face-to-face, real time, or video chat format that eliminates phone tag and back-and-forth emails—giving you back your valuable time.
Free marketing, courtesy of VESPECON
If you don’t work for a large corporation with a dedicated marketing department, you or someone on your small team are likely charged with marketing efforts, such as maintaining a social media page, preparing for community events, or offering CE to your referral network. With our services, you’ll enjoy an expanded referral network with minimal effort, so you can spend less time on marketing and more time focusing on patients.
Staff and specialist shortages will likely continue to be a problem for practices countrywide, but VESPECON offers solutions to help your practice run more efficiently. Visit our website to learn more about how our services can benefit your specialty practice, or sign up here to get started.