Veterinary specialists can significantly impact a pet’s medical care and make primary veterinarians’ lives easier, but contacting one isn’t always easy. Our VESPECON team of advisory specialists has the answers you need when you need them—we’re available for virtual consultations at your fingertips. Our mission is to increase pet owner access to advanced veterinary care and help primary veterinarians practice at their highest potential. 

Dr. Coretta C. Patterson is a small animal internal medicine specialist on our consulting team. We asked Dr. Patterson to share her thoughts about her work with VESPECON to help general veterinarians and other specialists decide if telemedicine consulting is right for them.

What do veterinary internists do?

Veterinary internists like Dr. Patterson are certified by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM). They may choose to focus on small or large animals. An internist often handles complex cases and pets with multiple diseases, so their work may overlap with other specialties. Veterinarians who specialize in internal medicine may choose one or more subspecialties, including:

  • Gastroenterology
  • Hepatology
  • Endocrinology
  • Infectious diseases
  • Urology
  • Nephrology
  • Respiratory medicine
  • Hematology and immunology

Internists see patients on an outpatient basis and perform diagnostic and therapeutic procedures daily, as well as manage critically ill inpatients in large facilities. For pets with chronic or overlapping conditions, the veterinary internist may help the primary veterinarian coordinate their overall care. Internists love the broad scope of their specialty and enjoy taking on new challenges each day.

How consulting with an internist can help veterinarians and pets

The VESPECON team includes several small and large animal internists, because we know how frequently general veterinarians need to call on them. In human medicine, internists are considered primary care providers, because of their extensive knowledge and expertise. In veterinary medicine, consulting with an internist can provide the information you need to manage your cases better. 

Dr. Patterson and the rest of the internal medicine team here at VESPECON strive to help primary veterinarians learn and grow their skills. We can help you form a diagnostic and treatment plan for difficult cases, interpret diagnostics, adjust the plan to your patient’s response, and follow up for as long as necessary. With an internist’s support, you’ll realize you can take on more than you thought.

Dr. Patterson’s take on VESPECON

We know that VESPECON is an excellent resource and that our team is extremely dedicated to improving veterinarians’ lives, but we wanted you to hear from one of our advisory specialists to understand why they enjoy consulting and how they can help. We asked Dr. Patterson to illustrate how she feels about the team and providing consultation services to primary veterinarians.

Question: What do you like best about working with general practice veterinarians to help their clients and patients?
Answer: I love being able to support clinicians and helping clients advance their pet’s care.

Q: How do you think VESPECON improves the lives of pets?
A: We are quick to schedule and easy to get hold of, and we help veterinarians provide the best level of care possible. 

Q: How do you think VESPECON improves the lives of general practice veterinarians?
A: Consulting with VESPECON reinforces to veterinarians that they already know so much! We support them and grow to become friends. 

Q: Describe a situation where you were able to help a veterinarian with a difficult case.
A: There was a case of an older Yorkie with some indicators of immune-mediated hemolytic anemia. The general practitioner was hesitant to start decreasing medications and wait and watch his bone marrow do its job. With my support, the veterinarian felt confident in our plan and we tapered the meds. The pet lived and thrived! 

Q: How did you find the above situation rewarding?
A: Consulting with me helped the veterinarian feel more empowered to manage the case. It also reminded me that my knowledge and experience can be helpful to folks. 

Q: What would you say to a general practice veterinarian who is unsure about using VESPECON’s services?
A: Try it! Use the a la carte service and see how it feels. You’ve got nothing to lose.

At VESPECON, our specialists love what they do. Meet Dr. Patterson or any of our other dedicated multi-disciplinary team members by contacting us, checking out our website, or requesting your first consultation.