The 2023 VetPartners Mid-Year Meeting, Part 2: Let’s Focus on Solutions

Jun 19, 2023 at 2:14 pm

To say that the veterinary staffing shortage has been discussed at length would be an understatement. I have read articles, listened to podcasts, and written more than a few articles about the issues that plague the veterinary community.

But, few resources have focused on solutions. If you are ready for a new perspective on this conversation, don’t miss the 2023 Mid-Year Meeting, which will be held July 11–13 at the Grand Hyatt Denver, in Denver, Colorado. The year’s theme is “Let’s Focus on Solutions,” and I have no doubt that our group of innovative, creative professionals will come up with some real, actionable answers.

“VetPartners and the Program Committee have received a lot of positive feedback from members on the content and direction of the past few in-person meetings, and we’ve channeled that feedback into creating something we think people are going to enjoy,” said William Lindus, Program Committee member and Membership Committee Chair. “Too many conferences focus on the problems in the industry. At the Mid-Year Meeting, we really wanted to build our theme around harnessing the immense brain power of the organization toward fixing some of those problems.”

Stand-out sessions

Many sessions will highlight potential solutions to the veterinary industry’s current struggles. Here are a few presentations the program committee is particularly excited about:

  • Veterinary Workforce Analysis: A Look at the Past with an Eye Toward the Future — In this presentation, Jim Lloyd, DVM, PhD, will examine how workforce economics are driving industry change. In particular, he’ll dive into possible solutions to the veterinary professional shortage and veterinary technicians’ role in practice.
  • Expanding Veterinary Schools to Combat Staffing Shortage — Mark Cushing, JD, will look at the combustible mix of millennials, Gen Zs, and the human-animal bond as he helps us consider how we got here; the cultural, social, and economic factors that contribute to the issues; what advances have been made to turn the situation around; and what will happen if we don’t fix the problem. He will also discuss whether we can borrow ideas or lessons from human health care.
  • Process for Obtaining Licensure — Differing and sometimes confusing processes between states and territories for obtaining veterinary licensure can prevent veterinary professionals’ ability to work in some jurisdictions. In this session, Jim Penrod, CAE, FASLA, will review license portability and mobility, the associated challenges, and possible solutions that can make the licensing process more accessible for veterinarians and technicians.
  • What Makes an Employer of Choice? — With numerous open positions for every candidate, a veterinary practice must find ways to stand out during the hiring process. In this session, Stacy Pursell, CPC, CERS, will discuss perks that can elevate a practice to an employer of choice.
  • Veterinary Technician Utilization Panel — After a presentation by Karen Felsted, CPA, MS, DVM, CVPM, CVA, about the economic benefits of better staff utilization, Mary Berg, BS, LATG, RVT, VTS (Dentistry), will moderate a panel discussion including some of the top experts in the veterinary industry. A round-table discussion will follow to allow attendees to fully engage and share ideas. 

“The panel discussions on technician utilization and on veterinary workforce shortages are going to be full of ideas, some of which may even conflict with one anotherand that’s a good thing,” said Lindus. “We want to tackle these issues from multiple angles so that we, as an organization of experts, are better equipped to usher in positive changes within the industry.”

Networking opportunities

Before, between, and after the sessions, there will be plenty of opportunities to meet with old colleagues and make new connections. Between the welcome reception Tuesday evening and the generously sponsored CareCredit social Thursday evening, attendees can take advantage of icebreakers, coffee breaks, dinners, and impromptu meet-ups to network. 

“As consultants in the veterinary industry, we succeed based on the power of our connections and how we can utilize those connections to improve the profitability, efficiency, and overall well-being of the practices we serve,” said Lindus. “I’m also excited about the new VetPartners members who will be joining us at the Mid-Year Meeting, and who will be given their first in-person look at the organization.” 

With the stellar lineup of speakers and panelists, the Program Committee anticipates that this will be one of the best meetings VetPartners has hosted. If you have not yet registered, there is still time to join us in Denver! If you’re not familiar with the Mile High City, check out our previous blog, and add an extra day or two to your trip to take full advantage of all Denver has to offer.

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Dr. Angela Beal

Angela Beal, DVM, is COO of Rumpus Writing and Editing, a veterinary-specific writing and editing company. Her past endeavors include working in small animal practice and directing a veterinary technician program for 15 years. Angela resides in Columbus, Ohio, with her husband and two soccer-loving teenage boys.

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