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Veterinary Business Management

Summary of University of Florida Veterinary Business Management Certificate Program

Program Director: Dr. Dana Zimmel - zimmeld@ufl.edu

Visit the Veterinary Business Management Association (UF VBMA) website for more information about business management educational opportunities at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine,

This is a summary of all the courses that compose the certificate program including their description and course objectives.

University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine VBMA Members

University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine VBMA Members

Business Management & Professional Development- Spring 3rd Year- 1 credit

Course Description

The goals of this course are to explore how personal financial obligations relate to career path planning and preparation, identify communication skills for managing clients successfully and review the process and components of financing a practice purchase.

Course Objectives

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Construct a personal financial budget that includes understanding of student debt, investment, retirement and tax obligations.
  2. Prepare a resume or curriculum vitae and practice interview skills.
  3. Indentify communication skills to needed to become a successful veterinarian.
  4. Describe the components of practice valuation to purchase a veterinary practice.

Veterinary Business Management- Fall 4th Year- 1 credit

Course Description

This introductory course reviews veterinary law, contracts and the basic components of veterinary practice management.

Course Objectives:

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Indentify and examine federal, state and local laws relating to the practice of veterinary medicine
  2. Design and negotiate a veterinary employment contract
  3. Develop techniques to communicate medical errors to clients
  4. Define how the cost of professional fees are derived
  5. Describe the basic components of human resource management
  6. Compare and contrast marketing vs. advertising and identify the components of each.

Entrepreneurship for Veterinarians- Fall 4th Year- 2 credits

Course Description

The goal of the course is to teach veterinary students the critical aspects of finance, operations, marketing and human resource management to prepare them for successful practice ownership.

Course Objectives

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Set personal goals and identify industry trends
  2. Review and analyze financial statements
  3. Calculate the cost of fees in a veterinary practice
  4. Hire, train, evaluate and manage staff
  5. Develop marketing  strategies to meet client expectations and promote the practice vision
  6. Manage inventory and design pricing strategies to maximize success
  7. List hospital safety requirements and prepare operating policies
  8. Construct a business plan  to buy or build a veterinary practice

Veterinary Practice Management Externship- Available Summer 2013- 2 credits

Course Description

The Practice Management Externship will be an intensive evaluation of successful business behaviors and successful business disciplines. This externship will offer students an exciting opportunity to build their observational and diagnostic skills by interviewing hospital owners and reviewing their business practices. Students will use business principles learned in the classroom and apply them to “real world” circumstances. Much like the SOAP process used in veterinary medicine, students will interview practice owners and apply one or more analytical tools to analyze problems and provide corrective recommendations and plans. At the end of the externship, students will give hospital owners a report of findings and recommendations.

Course Objectives:

Overall, learning and curriculum objectives include:

  1. Making known to DVM students why business knowledge is important
  2. Relating business topics and knowledge to real and current situations
  3. Helping DVM students overcome inhibitions, behaviors, and beliefs about gaining a business acumen
  4. Providing students a motivating “entrepreneurial” educational experience that will give them in-depth exposure to the essential business skills in managing a profitable and successful business.
  5. Providing students with an opportunity to understand the daily and strategic concerns in practice ownership with an emphasis in operations, finances, marketing, and human resources.
  6. Developing a “one-to-one” dialogue and the sharing of ideas between students and veterinary hospital owners.

Individualized Investigation-Start project Spring 3rd Year/ Present Spring of 4th Year- 2 credits

Course Description

This is a 2-credit elective course in which the student will investigate one topic to test a hypothesis or answer a specific question. The investigation can be on bench or field research. Literature reviews are not acceptable. Upon completion of the project, each student will prepare a manuscript in the style of an appropriate scientific journal and present the results of the investigation in either an oral or poster presentation. Any student desiring to graduate with “honors” or “high honors” must complete this course and receive a grade of “B” or higher.

Course Objectives:

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Students will demonstrate the ability to design a research project, collect data, analyze and interpret the results that is related to the discipline of veterinary medicine.
  2. Be able to present this in written and oral form.
  3.  Example Projects
    1. Perform a capital budgeting analysis on the purchase of a new piece of equipment
    2. Determine the cost of delivery for a new service
    3. Develop Wellness Program for preventive health care that includes development of financial packages, education of staff, marketing to clients and measurement of success.

Practice Based Equine Clerkship-Jr or Sr Year- 2 credits

Course Description

The purpose of this course is to provide students with on-farm, primary care experience with horses in physical examinations, diagnosis, treatment, herd health, routine surgery and practice management.

Course Objectives

Students will be assigned to a participating veterinary practice and spend the majority of their time with the supervising veterinarian(s) on farm calls or performing laboratory or office duties directly related to those calls. The student will be expected to participate on farm calls Monday through Friday, from 8:00 am until 5:00 pm or whenever the practitioner’s day is completed.  It is expected that students may participate in emergency calls received out of regular business hours, i.e., nights and weekends.  During such activities, the participating veterinarian is expected to:

1) Involve students in as many diagnostic and therapeutic procedures as possible;

2) Discuss diagnostic, prognostic and therapeutic considerations with students;

3) Take time in the practice vehicle to discuss and assess farm management, current disease problems, and application of disease prevention techniques wherever possible.

To the extent possible, as limited by the case load, this equine educational experience will include: clinical examination (physical exam and history taking), restraint, diagnosis, administration of medications, regulatory medicine, anesthesia techniques, reproductive management, vaccination programs, parasite control, dispensing medication, writing bills, practice management, laceration repair, bandaging, veterinary ethics, client communications, elective surgery and emergency procedures. Students will receive as much hands-on experience as feasible within the constraints of normal practice activity.

It is expected that students will spend approximately 10% of their time learning about the business management procedures used in the practice. The goal of this aspect of the clerkship is to expose students to the basics of veterinary practice management, including personnel management, inventory control, ordering procedures, client billing and finances.  Students should be given time to discuss these issues with the responsible persons in the practice.   The supervising veterinarian is expected to explain to the student the basis of client fees and how fees are reviewed.

 

University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine 2012-2013 VBMA Officers

University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine 2012-2013 VBMA Officers