There are few things less exciting than veterinary medical record compliance; one of those is dealing with your veterinary medical board for record NON-COMPLIANCE. The problem is veterinary communication is advancing into the mobile, text and twitter realm, rapidly. Do you know what's in (the medical record) and what's out?

Here are some important highlights (and their importance) from a recently released veterinary telemedicine report (Click Data Compliance Statement if you need a compliance statement for your veterinary practice):

Veterinary Medical Record requirement:

  • Information within veterinary medical records is confidential. Client and patient privacy should be maintained by means of data encryption during transmission


  • No matter what your practice software or digital x-ray vendor told you, you're likely in violation of client and patient confidentiality every time you email patient records or radiographs for referrals or teleconsulting


  • Utilize a service that stores patient information securely and requires a user to login to download patient records and/or images


Veterinary Medical Record requirement:

  • Policies and procedures for veterinary medical record privacy and security should be written, periodically reviewed, updated and readily accessible


  • Each veterinary practice is responsible to ensure they're using data encryption and have a written policy on-site as to how medical records and radiographs will be transferred confidentially


  • Utilize a service that stores patient information securely, requires a user to login to download patient records and/or images and provides you a written policy so you can download for your records


Veterinary Medical Record requirement:

  • Veterinary medical records should include, if applicable, copies of all patient-related electronic communications, including client-veterinarian communication...


  • If you put it in a text, and it's regarding a patient's condition or care, you need to keep a copy in the medical record


  • Only utilize a text service that is somehow integrated with your patient's medical records or don't text anything more than "Please call Main Street Veterinary Clinic @ 555-123-4444" or "Fluffy's non-prescription food is in. Please pick up."


I get it. I've been dealing with this data issue as I've developed Vetology. There's way too much to do in addition to caring for the pets. Plus there's too much misinformation out there that could get you into trouble with your veterinary medical board. My practical advice is, off load as much of the veterinary data compliance as you can before the rapidly growing data mountain buries you.

As veterinarians, we're in this together. If you have any questions you can contact me, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.I'm happy to assist where I can. I definitely don't have all the answers but after founding two veterinary data companies, I've met some incredibly talented people who can help.

Click Data Compliance Statement to view a compliance statement for your facility. You are welcome to use the statement if you need one.


Conflict of Interest Disclosure: Vetology does not have any conflicts of interest to disclose. Vetology is an independent company, run by veterinarians, for veterinarians. Vetology does not have any outside investment or ownership by a company or corporation involved in owning or partial ownership in veterinary hospitals (general or specialty) or veterinary lab services.

(This is the follow-up blog to Pros & Cons of Using Patient Portals for Communication)

Service and satisfaction are critical to today’s veterinary healthcare market success. Use of a portal or secure electronic communications can be an effective way to boost engagement and accountability with your referring veterinarians, achieve positive satisfaction, improve practice efficiency, and minimize the consequences associated with the lack of interoperability between practice electronic health records (EHR) systems at other practices, hospital systems and healthcare services.

But if your rDVMs resist the use of a portal or electronic communication service, unfortunately your process may be the cause. Many rDVMs who would benefit from access to referral information are also the ones who may be expected to use a number of other portals for multiple providers, hospitals, pharmacies, and more.

The following suggestions are geared to ensuring that a practice achieves maximum benefits through portal use.

1. Meet rDVMs, and their priorities!

In speaking with many, many specialty hospital administrators there is one repeated and GLARING mistake. The specialty hospital administrators are following the portal vendor’s recommendations on how to set things up rather than talking with their referring veterinarians. Ask yourself, how many specialty hospitals has your portal vendor run? Are they even a veterinarian? If the answer to both is “NO” then “SHOULD YOU BE LISTENING TO THEM? DO THEY UNDERSTAND VETERINARIAN RELATIONSHIPS?”.  If your answer is "NO", in their defense, how could they? Veterinarian interactions are formed beginning day 1 in vet. school and continue through case interactions. If you haven’t experienced this interaction, you WON’T GET IT. EVEN more important, they definitely won’t know your referring veterinarian relationships… but they may pretend to know so they can sell you a product. Don’t let this happen to you.

It cannot be overstated, AVOID this nonsense and build a portal that rDVMs will find useful and that meets their needs by TALKING TO YOUR RDVMS.

  • get them involved in the process early
  • ask them what they need
  • keep them involved throughout the process and acknowledge their involvement

The bottom line is that if rDVMs help build the experience they’re more likely to benefit and will want to continue to use the portal.

2. Integrate your portal into practice workflow

Prior to starting on a portal, verify that the practice workflow will effectively interface with the portal. This is the second biggest mistake I see in talking with so many specialty hospital administrators. Here’s how to avoid being next.

Critically evaluate your hospital’s workflow and decide which areas really can be automated, and which can’t. Also, make sure you have a plan for how the staff will be involved with the portal as information starts flowing. Time and again I speak with hospital administrators who haven’t thought about their workflow. Adapting a portal to your workflow is 100xs easier than retraining your staff. If a portal requires you to change to a new ERH or adjust workflow my recommendation is “RUN AWAY” before you find yourself in retraining hell.

Have a plan from the beginning. For example, assign staff to respond promptly to new appointment requests, upload patient information into the portal on a timely basis if the EHR is not capable of automatically linking the information, and monitor the status of the appointment schedule. Delays in responding over your patient portal is one of the easiest ways to discourage rDVMs from using the service. It will defeat one of the primary reasons to use the portal: the ability to connect directly.

3. Identify rDVMs who will most benefit from portal use

Examine your rDVM list and identify those who can most benefit from communication with the practice through the portal. Then get them involved early (see #1).

  • ·         personally contact each of these rDVMs and ask to spend time with them to discuss building the portal.
  • ·         form an rDVM online group that meets consistently to discuss building the portal as things progress.

Initially this may seem time consuming, but when done correctly, the practice benefits are significant and far outweigh the cost of time spent introducing the portal.

4. Promote the portal

Every encounter your practice has with an rDVM should include outreach on using the portal. To do this, your front-office staff and providers must be on the same page. Practices should also designate at least one employee who is available to meet one-on-one with an rDVM to set up a portal account and help patients navigate and understand the site’s features.

It’s important that every employee who discusses the portal with rDVMs shares a consistent message. It can be helpful to develop a script of important points for employees that cover the benefits of using the portal. It’s critical to include your doctors and other clinical providers in this effort, since their use of the portal will be key to obtaining rDVM buy-in.

5. Constantly evaluate portal usability

The next step is, once these efforts to integrate the portal into the workflow are underway, step back and evaluate how your efforts are working.

Have people outside the practice test the portal’s navigation to ensure it is intuitive and easy to use for rDVMs young and old.  Compare the portal system navigation with other patient e-Information systems for payers and hospital systems, and make changes as needed.


Conflict of Interest Disclosure: Vetology does not have any conflicts of interest to disclose. Vetology is an independent company, run by veterinarians, for veterinarians. Vetology does not have any outside investment or ownership by a company or corporation involved in owning or partial ownership in veterinary hospitals (general or specialty) or veterinary lab services.


You're a Vetology user, and Vetology users sometimes don't always follow the rules, run with the herd or do what everyone else is doing. So now that you're here, this means you're special and a true Vetology user.

V2 is changing things with the most modern interface in the industry, latest web technology and revolutionary data integration. V2 will automatically fill-in your referral and request forms, automatically add patient records to your requests and free up your time by freeing up the data.

Others in the industry will criticize but secretly follow, copying what you'll be seeing here first, but there are innovators and there are followers. We know which one we are, which one are you?  Join the Movement. Join the Network. Join IN! That's what you get from a company that thinks differently and innovates.

Update on V2 Day:

Feature Request #1: Vetology E-mail Campaigns for specialty hospitals. Imagine one location where all of your RDVM email addresses are stored, where you can create your hospital newsletter and send your emails out, on your timeframe. It's in V2 and it's FREE. It will be SUPER easy! Click here to watch a video.

Feature Request #2 (and it's a BIGGIE): Vetology One Click Referral Magic. See for yourself.   Click here to watch a video. And YES! We can really do this.

Very Important Tip #1: If you're currently using the original Vetology platform it is VERY IMPORTANT that you go through the CLINIC MIGRATION PROCESS. DO NOT sign up for the new Vetology system using the map. The CLINIC MIGRATION PROCESS is easy. On the V2 Platform put in your current Vetology username and password. This will start the CLINIC MIGRATION PROCESS. Upon completing the MIGRATION PROCESS you'll now have access to both platforms and data uploaded to one will be visible in both. A true WIN-WIN.

Feature Request #3: Vetology's Flipbook. Watch the video that some are already saying redefines veterinary record presentation and case information sharing.

Important Tip #2: As an account Admin, make sure you invite each team member to create a V2 account using their own email address. This will prevent a MAJOR headaches in the future.

Feature Request #4: ER access to patient records. With owner permission, your ER facility is able to view records from your In-Network RDVMs, even when they're closed. Records consist of blood work, prescriptions, patient history and images. Imagine that! An ER case where you have all the patient info without a single phone call.

Important Tip #3: Be sure to look at the user guides on the website.

Important Tip #4: Watch this video on how to log in to Vetology and go to your clinic worklist.


Together let's CELEBRATE the end of the time wasting faxing, emailing and cd burning nonsense!  We need to show everyone there is A BETTER WAYAs V2 users you stand out from the herd and your individuality is now being rewarded. We WILL change the failed way of moving veterinary information that everyone is clinging to. Make no mistake about it, It won't be easy to get those less progressive to adjust, but we must get others to JOIN IN. Welcome to a better tomorrow. Welcome to V2.


Conflict of Interest Disclosure: Vetology does not have any conflicts of interest to disclose. Vetology is an independent company, run by veterinarians, for veterinarians. Vetology does not have any outside investment or ownership by a company or corporation involved in owning or partial ownership in veterinary hospitals (general or specialty) or veterinary lab services.



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