Today's Veterinary Business

OCT 2018

Today’s Veterinary Business provides information and resources designed to help veterinarians and office management improve the financial performance of their practices, allowing them to increase the level of patient care and client service.

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Page 31 of 67

Equipment Guide 2018 Today's Veterinary Business • Equipment Guide 2018 30 The field of in-clinic laboratory equipment is quite interesting these days. Advanced chemistry and hematology analyzers are available from a number of reputable companies, and they all promise easy-to-use procedures and accurate results. As manufacturers continue to fine-tune and upgrade their analyzers, one piece of big news concerns urinalysis (UA) equipment. Recently, two major providers of in-clinic diagnostics machines released urine analyzers that essentially use a microscope and a camera to capture images of urine sediment and use facial recognition-type software to provide a report. Before this major technological advancement, you'd send urine samples to an outside reference lab and wait 24 hours. In the meantime, you'd possibly go down a treatment path and then get unexpected results, causing you to change direction and bring the client back. That scenario does not create the greatest client experience. The other problem comes from trying to have a trained staff member interpret results. Not everyone is good at this, so there's always a risk of missing something. The new technology is truly a landmark moment in in-clinic diagnostics. You'll receive reliable UA results before the client leaves the exam room, so you're ready to recommend the correct treatment right away. This helps patients, clients and your practice through better care and reduced staff time. Consider what rapid-response UA results would mean for more of your patients and clients. In the past, you might have hesitated to run a UA test because of the hassle of sending it out, the wait time and the lack of a qualified team member to read results. Talk with your trusted distribution sales rep to set up a demonstration, review the cost of ownership against the additional revenue you'll make, and discuss the warranty and training support you'll receive. Today's calibrated infusion pumps are reliably accurate when used with their own IV-line brands. (Each brand has a specific stiffness and hole size.) Unfortunately, some busy clinics mix IV line brands, creating a problem for patients because the wrong line can overdeliver or underdeliver the amount of fluid you're trying to administer. We asked Rick Warter, RVT, national equipment sales manager at MWI Animal Health, to explain why mixing pumps and IV lines could be a big issue. "For instance, let's say you want to give the patient 100 milliliters an hour," Warter said. "Using the wrong line, you might deliver 120 ml in an hour, which means in five hours you intended to deliver 500 ml but instead delivered 600 ml. In a small animal, this can be very bad. Or it can go the other way, where you don't deliver enough fluid to a dehydrated animal with a heart condition. This puts an extra burden on the circulatory system." To avoid this problem, the newest veterinary IV pumps allow you to select which line you're using, so you can change between lines and still maintain accuracy. Warter recommends either sticking to a pump in which you can select the IV line you want to use or make sure you always use the lines for which your pump was calibrated. If you've used the same infusion pumps for several years, not only is the wrong IV line an issue, but you might be at higher risk of a pump suddenly failing and disrupting care until the pump can be repaired or replaced. (Note that finding replacement parts for older pumps can be difficult.) How old are your IV pumps? This may be good time to upgrade to a new system. To find the ideal pumps for your practice, ask your distributor or manufacturer's rep to show you various options, modern features and the benefits. Patients suffering from pain or injury. Patients with hot spots or muscle or tendon strains. All kinds of animals benefit from laser therapy, a modality that is steadily growing as an accepted and even in-demand veterinary service. The good news is laser equipment is more effective than ever for physical therapy purposes. Even better, some equipment manufacturers offer evaluative tools and business management programs to help you grow your laser services and revenue. Many of today's laser-therapy tools come with on-screen guidance that standardizes treatments. The prescribed doses and treatment times are based on the patient species, size, weight and other factors. Using these settings, everyone on your team follows the same protocol. Training new staff members is easy. (Different state boards have different rules, so be sure your technical staff is qualified to apply laser treatments.) When you're buying from a larger manufacturer, you'll find analytics support that helps you track: • How many treatments were done and which type. • How many treatments were done by each doctor. Armed with this information and other business-management resources, you can es- tablish patterns or benchmarks that will help you identify opportunities to increase usage and revenue. Most practices are just beginning to see the potential of offering laser therapy to more patients who could benefit from it. An established company can help you choose the appropriate laser units for your hospital and assist with training, implementation and safe practices. This is especially im- portant if you haven't offered laser therapy or if you want to expand it as a more effective revenue center. The best way to see how laser therapy works and introduce it as a service is to request an in-clinic demonstration from a manufacturer's rep or your distributor. IV PUMPS LASER THERAPY HEMATOLOGY ANALYZERS

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