Revision of AVMA Model Practice Act

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The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has moved closer to a final version of a document that will shape the future of veterinary medicine—the Model Veterinary Practice Act (MVPA).

The last significant revision of the MVPA took place in 2003. The proposed changes to the MVPA are posted on the AVMA website.

The Model Veterinary Practice Act is used by state legislatures and state veterinary licensing and exam boards to help shape the rules and laws that govern veterinary medicine.

Academy of Veterinary Consultant President Tom Latta, DVM, Spearman, Texas, says several of the issues in the Model Practice Act will be important to food-animal and rural veterinarians. The AVC represents beef cattle veterinarians in the United States “The use of technicians, the degree of supervision and what background will be required for licensing will all be issues for food-animal veterinarians,” Latta says.

The AVMA Model Veterinary Practice Act Task Force’s draft changes to the MVPA include:

  • revisions that recognize credentialing of veterinary technicians and technologists;
  • clarification of the definitions of “direct supervision” and “indirect supervision;”
  • a revision of the definition of “veterinarian-client-patient relationship” that requires  a veterinarian to maintain medical records on  patients and that allows the veterinarian to arrange for continuing care of the patient by another veterinarian who has access to those records;
  • a new exemption that allows a veterinarian from one state to practice in another state following a declaration of emergency;
  • a new exemption that allows a person working under the supervision of a veterinarian to provide certain medical care in an animal shelter;
  • revisions that allow a veterinarian to disclose client and patient information to a third-party service provider, such as a company that sends vaccination reminders, as long as a confidentiality agreement is in place.


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