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Personal/Professional Development

NAVTA Corner
Spring 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Pay Attention to Job Retention

Kenichiro Yagi MS, RVT, VTS (ECC, SAIM)

Ken has spent nearly 20 years in practice. He obtained his VTS certification in emergency and critical care, as well as small animal internal medicine, and earned his master’s degree in Veterinary Science. He served as ICU Manager and Blood Bank Manager at Adobe Animal Hospital until 2018, and is now Program Director for the RECOVER CPR Initiative and simulation lab manager of the Park Veterinary Innovation Laboratory at Cornell University. He co-chairs the Veterinary Nurse Initiative and serves as a board member of the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, the Academy of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Technicians, and the Veterinary Innovation Council.

The path to a happier team and practice is led by practice management willing to do more to support the team to keep them happy, as well as team members willing to give feedback and bring up new information.

Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

The Veterinary Nurse’s Role in the Human-Animal Bond

Kara M. Burns MS, MEd, LVT, VTS (Nutrition), VTS-H (Internal Medicine, Dentistry), Editor in Chief

Kara Burns is an LVT with master’s degrees in physiology and counseling psychology. She began her career in human medicine working as an emergency psychologist and a poison specialist for humans and animals. Kara is the founder and president of the Academy of Veterinary Nutrition Technicians and has attained her VTS (Nutrition). She is the editor in chief of Today’s Veterinary Nurse. She also works as an independent nutritional consultant, and is the immediate past president of NAVTA. She has authored many articles, textbooks, and textbook chapters and is an internationally invited speaker, focusing on topics of nutrition, leadership, and technician utilization.

The human-animal bond is more complex than you think, and learning everything you can about it will benefit your beloved patients, your client relationships, and your practice’s function.

NAVTA Corner
Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Perspectives on the Creation of Advanced Veterinary Nurse Degrees

Kenichiro Yagi MS, RVT, VTS (ECC, SAIM)

Ken has spent nearly 20 years in practice. He obtained his VTS certification in emergency and critical care, as well as small animal internal medicine, and earned his master’s degree in Veterinary Science. He served as ICU Manager and Blood Bank Manager at Adobe Animal Hospital until 2018, and is now Program Director for the RECOVER CPR Initiative and simulation lab manager of the Park Veterinary Innovation Laboratory at Cornell University. He co-chairs the Veterinary Nurse Initiative and serves as a board member of the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, the Academy of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Technicians, and the Veterinary Innovation Council.

Mandy Fults MS, LVT, CVPP, VTS-CP (Canine/Feline)

Mandy has over 17 years of experience as a Licensed Veterinary Technician (LVT). She obtained her certification as a Veterinary Technician Specialist (VTS) in Canine/Feline Clinical Practice in 2011 and is a Certified Veterinary Pain Practitioner (CVPP). She obtained a master’s degree in veterinary biomedical science in 2018 through the University of Missouri. She is employed by Comanche Trail Veterinary Center in Liberty Hill, Texas, as the veterinary nursing supervisor. Her primary interest is internal medicine, with endocrinology as her passion, and is an active advocate for the advancement of the veterinary nurse profession.

Could an advanced veterinary nurse credential be on the horizon?

Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

History and Science of the Human-Animal Bond

Christina Melvin CVT, LVT, MPH, EdD

Dr. Christina Melvin works as a full-time high school biomedical science instructor and part-time general practice veterinary nurse in Northern Virginia. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Worcester State University, Master of Public Health from the University of New England, and Doctorate in Education for Health Professions from A.T. Still University. She is a CVT in Massachusetts and LVT in Virginia. Dr. Melvin’s professional interests include One Health, health literacy, and health education. She previously started and directed a high school veterinary assistant program in Massachusetts, and is passionate about introducing veterinary medical careers to young students.

Veterinary nurses can improve patient care by leveraging their knowledge of the human-animal bond and elevating pet owners as part of the pet health team.

Featured, Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Repairing a Broken Human-Animal Bond

Rachel Lees RVT, KPA CTP, VTS (Behavior)

Rachel is a veterinary nurse and a member of the Academy of Veterinary Behavior Technicians. She is the lead veterinary behavior technician at The Behavior Clinic in Olmsted Falls, Ohio. Rachel is a Certified Training Partner through the Karen Pryor Dog Trainer Professional Academy. She is a Fear Free Certified Level 3 Professional, is on the Fear Free Speakers Bureau, and is a member of the Fear Free Advisory Panel. Rachel is also the speaker committee chair and website chair for the Clinical Animal Behavior Conference and serves as secretary for the Academy of Veterinary Behavior Technicians.

By the time a behavior specialist gets involved, the relationship between owner and pet may be hanging by a thread. But with the right approach, veterinary nurses can play a part in restoring relationships and potentially saving lives.

Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Elevating the Human-Animal Bond

Beckie Mossor RVT

Beckie is a Registered Veterinary Technician living in Southport, North Carolina. Beckie graduated from Central Carolina Community College in 2007 with her AAS in Veterinary Medical Technology and will graduate from the University of North Carolina Pembroke with her Bachelors in Non-Profit and Public Administration in 2019. Beckie has enjoyed a diverse career in small animal, large animal, and mixed practices; academia; and management and consulting. Beckie co-founded Veterinary Advancement, is a professional medical responder with the ASPCA Field Investigations Response (FIR) Team, is Volunteer Director of Operations 3K9 Working Dogs, and co-hosts the podcast Veterinary Viewfinder.

Certification programs help practitioners incorporate the human-animal bond into daily care.

Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Never Say Never: The Journey of Becoming a Teacher

Kristen Hagler BS, RVT, VTS (Physical Rehabilitation), CCRP, CVPP, OAM, VCC

Kristen has been an RVT since 2002 and has multiple credentials related to physical rehabilitation and pain management. In 2012, Kristen helped form the Organizing Committee of the Academy of Physical Rehabilitation Veterinary Technicians and was recognized as a Veterinary Technician Specialty in Physical Rehabilitation in 2017. In 2018, Kristen was awarded the California Veterinary Technician of the Year award by the California Veterinary Technician Association. Her special interests include veterinary orthotics and prosthetics, geriatrics, sporting and performance, mobility and service dogs, and multidisciplinary pain management strategies.

Veterinary nurses who pursue career development could find new opportunities, such as teaching overseas.

Fall 2020, Personal/Professional Development

Passion Project: Going the Extra Mile for Pets in Need

Angel Martin RVT, BAS

Angel graduated from Macomb Community College’s Veterinary Technology Program in 2007. After 1 year of working in Michigan, she decided to move back home to Georgia where she now works as an RVT. She then enrolled at St. Petersburg College and earned her bachelor’s degree in veterinary technology and practice management. She joined Georgia Veterinary Associates in 2010. With a great understanding of all the positions and needs of the hospitals, she is now the Operations Manager for all 4 GVA locations. Angel helped start the CARE Fund in 2014 and was recognized with the 2019 American Humane Hero Veterinary Nurse Award, a national award that honors those behind the scenes in animal medicine.

If helping animals in need—beyond those with loving owners and disposable funds—is a true passion of yours, consider what you can do to reach those patients and give them their happy, healthy lives back.

Fall 2020, Personal/Professional Development , Public Health

Linked Together: One Health

Christina Melvin CVT, LVT, MPH, EdD

Dr. Christina Melvin works as a full-time high school biomedical science instructor and part-time general practice veterinary nurse in Northern Virginia. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Worcester State University, Master of Public Health from the University of New England, and Doctorate in Education for Health Professions from A.T. Still University. She is a CVT in Massachusetts and LVT in Virginia. Dr. Melvin’s professional interests include One Health, health literacy, and health education. She previously started and directed a high school veterinary assistant program in Massachusetts, and is passionate about introducing veterinary medical careers to young students.

One Health is the collaborative effort of human, veterinary, and environmental medicine on a local, national, and global level. Veterinary and human nurses have great potential for advantageous teamwork.

NAVTA Corner
Fall 2020, Personal/Professional Development

Navigating the Veterinary Technician Credential Conversation

Kenichiro Yagi MS, RVT, VTS (ECC, SAIM)

Ken has spent nearly 20 years in practice. He obtained his VTS certification in emergency and critical care, as well as small animal internal medicine, and earned his master’s degree in Veterinary Science. He served as ICU Manager and Blood Bank Manager at Adobe Animal Hospital until 2018, and is now Program Director for the RECOVER CPR Initiative and simulation lab manager of the Park Veterinary Innovation Laboratory at Cornell University. He co-chairs the Veterinary Nurse Initiative and serves as a board member of the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, the Academy of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Technicians, and the Veterinary Innovation Council.

We are all aiming to elevate the profession and agree that standardizing the credentials is the way forward, leading to better consistency, recognition, mobility and reciprocity, and title protection.

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