The Access to Veterinary Care Coalition (AVCC) was formed in early 2016 to draw attention to the problem of lack of access to veterinary care and to educate the veterinary profession and communities about it. It is an American story that affects millions of pets and their people in the United States. A better understanding of this societal problem will encourage evidence-based strategies to save lives.
The AVCC worked in association with the University of Tennessee Colleges of Social Work and the College of Veterinary Medicine, to conduct a national study (made possible by the generosity of Maddie’s Fund) of pet owners, including populations with inadequate access to veterinary care, and veterinary service providers. The purpose of the study was to identify barriers that households face, as well as best practices among those delivering veterinary care to underserved pet owners. The results have been published and widely disseminated to help guide veterinarians, animal welfare organizations, legislators, community leaders, and others as they seek to improve access to veterinary care for pets currently without it.
The primary goals of the AVCC were:
- Foster development and promotion of methods for providing access to veterinary care for the millions of pets currently without it.
- Respond to legislative, regulatory and other efforts designed to interfere with nonprofit practices’ ability to serve pet owners, and work to preempt and avoid such action whenever possible.
- Improve collaboration among private for-profit and nonprofit veterinary service providers as well as relevant social services providers to promote access to veterinary care for all pet owners.
- Provide guidance to the veterinary profession regarding ways it can help promote access to veterinary care for all pet owners.
Various disciplines were represented on the AVCC, including:
- Nonprofit veterinary service providers
- For-profit veterinary service providers
- National professional veterinary organizations
- Pet owners needing access to veterinary care
- Animal protection organizations
- Veterinary schools
- Veterinary social work
- Other animal care professionals
If you would like to learn more about the AVCC members, click here.
AVCC Report Released
On December 17, 2018, the Access to Veterinary Care: Barriers, Current Practices, and Public Policy was released.