The Veterinary Innovation Council
This collaborative, industry-wide initiative is focused on leading innovation in global animal health
If you’d like additional information about the VIC, or you’d like to get involved in furthering our mission to provide better care for animals everywhere, please contact Aaron Massecar directly at VIC@NAVC.com.
Get Involved with the VIC
The Veterinary Innovation Council (VIC) is committed to encouraging the growth of startup companies in the veterinary space. We are always looking to connect with startups and help them grow.
There are three main ways that we help startup companies:
- We provide general advice about the veterinary space, who to connect with, and adjacencies and collaborators who might not be immediately evident
- We provide direction for access to resources and potential investors
- We create spaces for startups to interact with each other
Some specific events that we are involved with include:
- Veterinary Student Internships within Startups – The Veterinary Entrepreneurship Academy (VEA.vet) is a unique 12-week program
that combines startups, students, universities and veterinary practices to accelerate animal health innovation.The goal of the VEA is to educate, inspire, and activate veterinary students as they are transformed into future leaders and innovators within the veterinary and pet industries. It is designed to empower these students with the mindset and skills to thrive in the changing world of animal health.By combining a summer curriculum in entrepreneurship with a practical internship in a startup company, we deliver a unique program which advances student learning and accelerates new products and services from some of industry’s most promising companies.
- Pitch Competitions and Conferences
- The Veterinary Innovation Summit at Texas A&M – The Veterinary Innovation Summit brings together thought leaders who operate on the periphery as new startups or right in the core as CEO’s of major vet healthcare organizations. The summit takes place on Texas A&M’s campus in early April and highlights startups in everything from exhibitor space and speaking opportunities to workshops and pitch opportunities to veterinarians.
- Startup Circles at VMX – The veterinary profession’s most innovative startups, products or services that are revolutionizing our field. Startup circles is a competitive opportunity for early stage startup companies to demonstrate their products to a wider community and compete in a pitch competition for upwards of $25,000 cash! No strings attached.
- The Pet Project – We have partnered with The Pet Project at VMX, but they certainly haven’t limited their growth to just our relationship. They offer a pitch competition for startup companies operating in the veterinary space.
- KC Animal Health Corridor – We don’t have an official relationship with the KC Animal Health Corridor, but they are certainly an organization worth looking at. They offer opportunities for later stage startup companies. The investment opportunities there are large and can certainly help to accelerate growth.
- Incubators and Accelerators – Our initial assessment shows that there are not enough incubators and accelerators to cater to the growth of the veterinary startup space. There are plenty of models out there, but none that are specifically dedicated to the veterinary space. One model that has demonstrated traction in the UK is vHive and we’d love to hear more about your experience with incubators and accelerators.
- General Information
- Unleashed – 70+ Companies Targeting The Pet Industry : An quick map of companies moving into the veterinary space
- Veterinary Startups – A strong list of veterinary startups and their investments
We want to know more about your needs.
Do you have specific questions and needs? Let us know. To learn more about how the Veterinary Innovation Council (VIC) can help you please email VIC@NAVC.com.
All the innovation in the world won’t help unless we train the veterinarians of tomorrow how to take advantage of the opportunities that new and emerging companies offer.
Here are a few companies and events to help you learn and grow as an emerging veterinary professional.
- Veterinary Entrepreneurship Academy – This unique 12-week program that combines startups, students, and veterinary practices to accelerate animal health innovation. We pair companies that are willing to challenge the status quo with students who have the passion and experience to advance the veterinary profession. Students add value to partners in a variety of ways and here are a few examples of where companies can expect them to contribute
- Veterinary Innovation Summit – Veterinarians today are playing a more significant role and having a more substantial impact on the world than ever before. They are developing new therapies to treat cancer, containing the spread of disease, supporting disabled people through animal assistance programs, promoting the human-animal bond, combating climate change and addressing food security. Veterinarians are quite literally transforming the lives of people and our society each and every day.
This April, we’ll celebrate, explore and enhance the Veterinary impact on the world at the Veterinary Innovation Summit. You won’t want to miss it!
Activities that the VIC Supports
The Idea Competition – The Idea Competition is an innovation competition exclusively for veterinary students aimed at spurring creativity and innovation directed toward animals, veterinarians, and/or veterinary students. We help students move their ideas from ideation through to prototype to be entered into the pitch competition.
The Veterinary Innovation Council (VIC) is obsessed with connecting with forward-thinking practitioners. What is a “forward-thinking practitioner”? You might be one if:
- You see opportunities in the veterinary space that your colleagues don’t see
- You like to try new things and constantly develop better ways of doing things
- You want to learn about new technology companies
- You are one of the first of your colleagues to use a new technology, or
- You really listen to and adapt to your client needs by offering services that support their growth and development.
If any of the above describe you, then connect with us. We’d love to help you grow your practice and develop new capabilities.
Are you interested in implementing new technologies in your practice?
Below are some success stories and even a step-by-step process to follow for implementation.
We worked with one clinic who was spending hours everyday on call-backs for routine things like negative fecal results. We encouraged them to use text messaging to communicate appointment reminders, negative fecal results, and medication availability to a select group of clients. The clients loved it! As well, the receptionists saved hours each day so they were able to focus on providing a better client experience overall.
We worked with another clinic who was interested in providing live video services to their clients for wellness exams. The clinic team saw this as an extra level of value for their clients and an extra touchpoint for developing their relationships with clients. The clients appreciated the ability to connect with their veterinarians between regularly scheduled appointments and enjoyed the live answers to their questions from the comfort of their own home.
A group of clinics decided to offer a basic triage service through a third party’s text message platform. This platform allows clients to text their questions from their phone to a team of veterinary professionals. Here are the results:
- 590 appointments conducted
- 80% were resolved through advice provided via text (not urgent or needing referral)
- 20% required an in-person visit
- 5 star reviews received from 94% of users
- 62% of users had no regular veterinarian
- Top 5 issues/concerns:
- Vomiting 29%
- Urinary 18%
- Skin issue 10%
- Flea/Tick 9%
- Lethargy 9%
In sum, clients were happy with the service, most of those clients are from an underserved market, and most of the issues were resolved through the text messaging platform.
- Start small: focus on making one client’s experience better. Make sure it is someone you have a good relationship with
- Start with something that doesn’t compromise the health of the animal in any way (a post-vaccine routine follow-up or behavior questions work well)
- Learn as much as possible from that experience.
- Expand the service once you and your team are confident with the process
Have questions about Telemedicine?
One of VIC’s starting points was to create clarity for the Veterinary Client Patient Relationship. Here’s the basic test:
Have you physically examined the animal within the past year (or so)?
- If yes, then you can use whatever telehealth tool you would like to diagnose, prescribe, and treat that animal.
- If no, then you cannot diagnose or prescribe medication for the animal.
If you follow that test, then you shouldn’t have any problems, from a legislative point of view.
Some things to keep in mind
- You should never be forced to use telemedicine, especially if you do not feel you have adequate information to provide a diagnosis or treatment plan
- Our preliminary work has shown that telemedicine:
- Increases the number of clients with access to healthcare
- Provides faster access to care for animals in need
- Helps clients understand and engage with their animal’s healthcare
- Accesses a market that is currently underserved
VIC Innovation Awards
The Veterinary Innovation Council’s Innovation Awards (VIC Awards) is positioned to be an annual program that is designed to take a look back and recognize those people and organizations who have dedicated themselves to the betterment of the animal health industry through innovations that make a difference in the lives of animals everywhere.
Nominations open in February 2018 and close on May 1, 2018. Final voting begins on July 1, 2018 and will close on September 30, 2018. The winners will receive their awards at VMX 2019.Learn More
Watch to Learn More about the VIC Awards
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