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4 Ways Veterinarians are Evolving the Way They Practice

vets are evolving the way they practice
The world seems to be changing faster every day. It can be overwhelming trying to keep up with emerging technology, ideas and innovations, and figuring out what that means for your practice. You’ve got patients to treat and a clinic to manage, after all!
That’s why we pulled together advice from veterinarians and industry leaders to see how they are keeping pace with a rapidly changing veterinary industry.
Here are four suggestions you can implement today to see immediate impact!

1. Outsource medication management

Today, more veterinary clinics are choosing to offload medication management in order to cut costs, reduce waste, save time and boost team morale.
Outsourcing medication management has helped South Peak Veterinary Hospital reduce the amount of waste, and money lost, to expired products. As Dr. Ellman, DVM, puts it, “It has helped our practice not waste medicine by having less on hand, especially the less frequently used meds.”
Dr. Richardson, Head of Veterinary Medicine of Small Door Veterinary, says it has helped their practice move away from carrying large overstocks of prescription medication.
“Overstocking medications, or stocking too many choices of a similar product, can have a negative financial impact on practice profitability. [By outsourcing medication management for more chronic medication], we minimize expensive pharmaceuticals sitting on our shelves and expiring (which contributes to practice loss).
For custom formulated medications, we utilize the services of a compounding pharmacy for our members so we can get exactly what we are looking for, in a formulation the pet will actually take and/or the owner can administer. This has helped our practice significantly decrease the total overhead of our pharmaceutical/product inventory, as well as streamline our inventory management."
According to Dr. Hazzard, DVM at The Boston Cat Hospital, outsourcing medication management led to a boost in team morale. “[Outsourcing mediation management] decreases the time dedicated to inventory and pricing. While transferring prescriptions to outside pharmacies decreases our product revenue internally, it saves on staff wages in the time they would have spent counting, labeling, and handling physical prescriptions. I haven't done the math, but I suspect it's a net neutral with respect to revenue, but a significant gain in team happiness!”
According to VIN, the average wellness pet vet takes around 20 minutes. If you could save at least five minutes per prescription by outsourcing medication management, your practice could see 2-3 more new patients each week (assuming you’re prescribing 1-2 times a day). Now that’s a win/win for everybody!

2. Offer virtual veterinary care via videoconferencing

For many clients, taking a pet to a clinic is a stressful experience, especially for anxious and elderly pets. While it cannot replace an in-person examination and diagnosis, telemedicine can be useful for teletriage, follow-up appointments, monitoring patients and offering advice.
According to Dr. Wilson, DVM at Muttville, continuing to provide virtual veterinary care has been a game-changer for her practice.
“To be honest, I was a little skeptical about providing virtual care at first, but I am officially a convert. Pet parents love being able to discuss palliative care and have end-of-life discussions from the comfort of their home, and I love being able to see my clients and patients feeling comfortable and relaxed. This has changed how I practice for the better.”
Offering telemedicine services, in addition to in-clinic care, can help you save time and net more business as clients seek out convenience and comfort with veterinary care.

3. Use apps or online portals to improve service to clients

Pet parent expectations are exploding these days. It may seem impossible to keep up with the growing need for faster communication and instant access to information.
That’s why many clinics provide a mobile app or online portal that clients can use to book appointments, check their pet’s medical records, get access to 24/7 veterinary telemedicine, and submit medication refill requests. Offering an online platform can also help reduce the number of calls made to a practice and client wait time.
“Using this technology has helped our team to decrease unnecessary wait time,” says Dr. Richardson of Small Door Veterinary. “For example, once a medication refill request comes in, it allows adequate time for our medical team to thoroughly review the patient history…[and] our members don't have to physically wait in a line at the practice during this review process. When we utilize the services of external pharmacies such as Mixlab, we also utilize their online platform to request a new prescription or refill request…[this] has helped decrease the lift of the pet parent as well as reduces our team’s time waiting on hold to talk to a pharmacist”
Dr. Cimino, DVM of BetterVet, agrees that the use of a mobile app has improved their communication with clients. “ One of the most important tenets of our practice is an emphasis on technology. BetterVet clients schedule their pets' appointments, access medical records and request prescription refills on our mobile app.”

4. Use compounding to improve the medication process

Many veterinarians use compounding to improve compliance, reduce stress, provide the most accurate dosage, and offer a more pleasant experience for their furry patients.
Dr. Pokard, a small animal and exotics veterinarian in Southern California, uses compounds that are customized for her patients' varying tastes and weight. “I use Mixab for all of my exotic patients because I can get liquid form of medications in basically any flavor, even for my reptile patients.”
The clinic team at Muttville Rescue always keeps marshmallow flavored gabapentin/trazodone compounds on hand for their anxious patients. “We find this very effective,” says Dr. Wilson. “And having it compounded keeps the process simple for both the medical team and the dog’s foster family.”
As the veterinary industry evolves, so must your practice. By adopting new technologies, ideas and systems, you can ensure that your practice continues to improve efficiencies while providing the highest level of care for your patients, clients and team.
Looking for a pet med pharmacy you can rely on?
Mixlab is a veterinary-first pet med pharmacy that is passionate about helping you improve your practice. We offer FREE next-day delivery on all compounded and commercial medications, an extensive range of forms and 40+ flavors to ensure patient compliance, and much more.
Let us help save your time and delight your clients. Partner with Mixlab today!