Often, we overlook the essential jobs which are all around us. These jobs are essential for society to ensure that our families and friends are well and taken care of. It is time we stop and think about these professions and how they are so impactful to us all.
The Week of October 16 – 22, National Veterinary Technician week, is the perfect time to celebrate the true heroes of the veterinarian world. Vet techs are like human nurses because they are the glue that holds animal hospitals and private clinics together. Their accomplishments and contributions to the veterinary profession should not go unnoticed or uncelebrated.
There is so much unknown about vet techs to the general public. Some people might think they and veterinarians are the same. Many might not know what they do. It is impossible to celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of vet techs if we do not know what they are.
This article will do its best to highlight all the great things a veterinary technician does. Please take a moment and educate yourself so you can go out and spread awareness of this crucially important profession.
What are Veterinary Technicians?
In short, veterinary technicians are animal nurses. However, in reality, they are far more than that. These highly trained individuals act as patient advocates, lab technicians, anesthesia technicians, radiology technicians, phlebotomists, and surgical technicians. They, indeed, are the reason veterinary clinics thrive.
Vet technicians are educated at technical schools, community colleges, or 4-year universities. These heroes usually attain a 2-year associate degree, while some opt for a full 4-year bachelor’s degree. However, some technical school programs will offer the courses and training you need to sit for the certification exam.
In most states, the potential vet tech must pass a certification exam. These exams are not all the same, and it varies state by state. Vet techs are regulated at the state level, so not all states require certification or use the same tests. The Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) is the most commonly used exam. After completing the certification exam, vet techs are customarily required to gain continuing education credits to maintain or renew their license.
What Duties Does a Veterinary Technician Perform?
Many of the duties that a vet technician might perform regularly are similar to those that a nurse would perform on human patients. Like human patients, many animals visit the clinic for vaccinations. The vet tech will be responsible for administering those vaccines. This also includes any medications or treatments for any ailments. The vet tech will even be responsible for restraining the animal if they are unhappy with any procedures and treatments. After the treatment, the vet tech will need to educate the owner on what to expect during recovery or any possible side effects to look out for.
The vet techs will also be responsible for preparing the needed tools for surgery, performing diagnostic tests, conducting x-rays, and even providing emergency care or first aid. Not only will the vet tech prepare for surgery, but they will also assist in the anesthesia administration and the actual procedure. Veterinary technicians are often responsible for ensuring the clinic keeps running smoothly.
Duties that a veterinary technician can perform are regulated at the state level. This means that their duties will vary slightly from state to state. Vet techs are usually authorized to do any tasks a licensed veterinarian asks. The only exceptions are diagnosing medical conditions, prescribing medications, and performing surgery.
Help Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital Celebrate Our Vet Techs!
We have worked hard to develop the best team of veterinary technicians in Oklahoma. Whether you have been a long-time patient or want to find better care for your pet, Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital is here to help. Don’t forget to thank your vet tech at your next appointment!
What Does a Typical Day Look Like for a Veterinary Technician?
Vet technicians typically arrive far earlier than the clinic opens. This gives them the chance to prepare for the patient’s arrival and any procedures scheduled for that day. A veterinary clinic will always pride itself on a warm welcome to all of its clients. Once the patients arrive, the vet techs will ensure that their wait is not long and that they are comfortable.
Depending on the schedule for the day, the vet tech will work hard setting catheters, preparing for surgeries, preparing for dental procedures, and drawing blood. Once the clients have come and gone, they will ensure that the rooms are cleaned and disinfected in preparation for the next visitor.
Once the day has ended, the vet technician must maintain the machines and equipment. This means they must restock supplies, clean and disinfect equipment, and ensure all machines are working correctly.
Every day in the life of a vet technician is different. This brief description is just that, brief. This does not take into account the small jobs they must perform daily such as instructing patients on home care, checking the mail, and filing paperwork.
How Can You Celebrate National Vet Tech Week?
It has been found that the proper use of vet technicians will result in a more productive clinic. More efficiently utilized technicians will bring more revenue to the clinic. Not only will proper utilization bring more money, but it will free up the veterinarian to perform more intricate and vital tasks. By spreading awareness of what vet techs do, you are opening the eyes of many animal clinics to how they can better utilize their technicians.
You can help spread this awareness by praising any family or friends who are vet techs. Social media is one of the best tools to spread recognition and awareness. If you do not know any vet techs personally, you can always share links or bios of local vet techs you find online.
Just as nurses need to get the proper recognition they deserve for their role in the human medical profession, vet techs do as well. Without them, the vet world would be turned on its head, and our furry friends would not get the care they need and deserve.