Today’s Veterinary Business Staff
The British Veterinary Association is asking animal hospitals in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to limit their services to emergency and urgent care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The guidance stands in contrast with the situation in the United States, where many veterinary practices are conducting wellness exams and offering other everyday services. The American Veterinary Medical Association is advocating that U.S. practices be considered “essential businesses” during the coronavirus crisis.
The BVA’s March 24 advisory followed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s stay-at-home order for the United Kingdom.
“It’s incumbent on all of us do everything we can to curb the spread of COVID-19 and follow the government’s #StayHomeSaveLives instructions,” said BVA President Daniella Dos Santos, BVetMed, MRCVS. “For vets, that means limiting our provision to emergency and urgent care and working to maintain food production from farm to fork.”
“Practices are following strict social-distancing measures and asking owners to make sure they follow the same steps in the interests of everyone’s safety,” Dr. Dos Santos. “Please call your vet before attending a practice to get up-to-date advice on what measures they have in place to safely treat your pet in an emergency.”
“We appreciate that some pet owners may be frustrated that routine appointments are being canceled, but these are vital measures to curb non-essential travel and contact and keep everyone as safe as possible during this challenging period.
“I’d like to pay tribute to all my veterinary colleagues across the country who are working hard to maintain their vital services, both for companion animals and in making sure the U.K. has a steady supply of food produced to high standards of health, welfare and safety.”
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