ALERT: Police Impersonator Scams

Please note there have been multiple reports of a scammer calling local vets’ offices and cell phones impersonating the police. They have used the name of Captain David Chang.

The Honolulu Police Department recommends that if a veterinarian receives a phone call from a police officer to be wary and ask for their badge number and office phone number. Do not give out any personal information. Then call HPD (or your local county police department) and verify that information before returning the phone call to their office. If you suspect an impersonator, call 911 and file a police report.

RVT in Hawaii FAQs

WHAT DOES THIS LAW DO?
This is a title protection law only. Meaning that, as of July 1, 2018, only people who have registered with the state of Hawaii can use the title veterinary technician, vet tech, CVT, LVT, or RVT.

This includes on name tags, websites, business cards, etc. All staff members can perform the same tasks, but in order to use the title “veterinary technician”, he or she must be an RVT in the state of Hawaii.
Visit https://hvta.org/rvt-in-hi-faq/ for more details.

I AM A VETERINARIAN. WHAT DOES THIS LAW MEAN FOR ME?
For eligible employees to grandfather in, you’ll check off skills and hours on the Hawaii Experience Verification form and have it notarized. Eligible employees will need 5 years practical experience in Hawaii to sit for the Vet Tech National Exam.

Your employees can still do all the skills and tasks that they’ve been performing, but until they register in Hawaii, they cannot use the title “vet tech” or “veterinary technician”.

WANT TO HELP YOUR STAFF BECOME RVTs?
Awesome! The VTNE is a challenging exam, and you can help prepare them. Quiz them, ask them to do drug & fluid calculations, include them in your complicated cases, help pay their fees, and encourage them to attend HVTA’s study sessions.
Visit https://hvta.org/study-sessions-vtne-prep/ for more info.

THREE PATHS TO RVT
1. If already credentialed in another state: transfer VTNE scores, send license verification to DCCA.
2. If graduate of an AVMA accredited vet tech program: pass the VTNE with HI as your state.
3. Alternate Path (aka “grandfathering”): available now through July 2021 for on-the-job-trained technicians with 5+ years of experience in Hawaii, need notarized form from veterinarian, pass the VTNE with HI as your state.

For more information, see the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) Vet Tech page.

Sam Geiling, RVT
President, HVTA
Windward Community College
Kaneohe, HI

AVMA Update July 2018

Aloha and Greetings from Denver Colorado, the location for the 2018 AVMA House of Delegates Summer Session (July 12-13) and AVMA Convention (July 13-17).

The House of Delegates (HOD) is the principal body within the Association
responsible for establishing policy and providing direction for matters relating to veterinary medicine. The House of Delegates consist of one (1) Delegate and one (1) Alternate Delegate appointed by veterinary organizations as stated in the HOD By-Laws.

For the past 27 years, Cordell Chang has been the Hawaii Veterinary Medical
Association member to the House of Delegates. This year, 2018, Cordell will
retire as a Delegate. To honor him for his years of service, the AVMA chose him to give the Invocation to this years HOD meeting. Due to family
responsibilities, he was not able to attend. It was my honor to read his Invocation to the Delegates. Cordell has been a shining light and a personal mentor for me, and like so many of the members have commented, “We will truly miss Cordell!”

This year’s agenda included the following topics (and their action items):

Dog Devocalization
– A proposal to express more forceful opposition to debarking was turned down and was then voted to refer the proposal back to the AVMA Board of Directors for reconsideration. The Association’s current policy states that debarking should be used only as an alternative to euthanasia, after efforts to change a dog’s behavior have failed.

Breeding Guidelines – The AVMA House Of Delegates voted for the AVMA to collaborate with others, such as American Kennel Club and Cat Fanciers, on breeding practices and guidelines to minimize inherited disorders in dogs and cats.

Foot and Mouth Disease – Support of a vaccination policy and recommendations on laboratory testing, preparedness activities and messaging. Action: Approval by House of Delegates.

License Portability – What is the need and what are the possible avenues for veterinarians to move across jurisdictions for temporary relief and disaster response? Recommendation from HOD: No action at this time.

Student Debt – Think outside the box. What hasn’t been tried?
Recommendations from HOD:
– Board of Directors investigate methods to make available financial advisor(s) to help veterinary applicants, students, and recent graduates manage the cost of education.
– AVMA investigate and promote strategies for private practitioners to assist students and recent graduates in managing the cost of their education. dents that is financially sustainable for the AVMA.
– AVMA investigate the development of a low interest loan program for veterinary students that is financially sustainable for the AVMA
– AVMA develop a toolbox of advocacy strategies to assist state VMAs to promote increased funding for higher education and loan repayment programs.

Globalization – What role should the AVMA play internationally?
The AVMA staff will create a communication plan for educating AVMA members about its current international activities, develop tools to assess member interest in personal involvement in international initiatives and global volunteer opportunities, and explore international AVMA membership category models.

If anyone would like to discuss more of the above topics or HOD, please feel free to contact me through the HVMA website.

After two days of House of Delegate responsibilities it was now time to learn
(many hours of CE available), socialize (attend a Colorado Rockies Baseball
game), network (Alumni receptions), and be empowered through the words of Keynote speaker Shiza Shaid and participate in community service – Street Dog Clinic (caring for the dogs/cats belonging to the homeless). It was great to see many Hawaii Colleagues participate in this year’s conference entitled “Elevate Your Passion”.

I invite you to the 2019 AVMA Conference in Washington D.C. August 2-9!

Aloha!
Leianne K. Lee Loy, DVM
Hawaii Alternate Delegate for AVMA

AVMF Extends Disaster Relief to Hawaii Veterinarians

AVMF Disaster Relief and Reimbursement Grants

 The American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF) provides two grant programs to help veterinarians and the animals they care for during times of disaster. Grants are available to support victims of hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes, volcanoes, wildfires or oil spills.

 Disaster Reimbursement Grants for Veterinary Medical Care

Purpose: The AVMF disaster reimbursement grants are for the purpose of ensuring the emergency veterinary medical care of animal victims of disaster.

 Awards: Up to $5,000 may be issued per grantee for out-of-pocket expenses incurred by veterinarians providing emergency veterinary medical care to animal victims of disasters.  AVMF reimburses for the actual cost of medical supplies purchased directly from a vendor. Modest boarding costs may also be covered. 

Disaster Relief Grant for Veterinarians

Purpose: The AVMF disaster relief grants are for the purpose of assisting veterinarians who have experienced an emergency need for basic necessities due to a disaster. The grants would cover items such as clothing, temporary housing, transportation and meals that were needed immediately following a disaster.

 Awards: Up to $2,000 may be issued per grantee for out-of-pocket expenses incurred immediately following a disaster. AVMF reimburses for the actual cost of items purchased directly from a vendor. Modest housing costs may be covered for emergency temporary shelter.

 Application Procedure

The applications are posted on the AVMF website. Applicants should follow the online directions for submitting the application and the expense chart. Limited funds are currently available and approved on a first come, first served basis.

Deadline:  Applications must be received no later than 120 days following the disaster.

 More Information: Please contact Cheri Kowal, Senior Manager, Programs and Operations, 847-285-6691 or CKowal@AVMA.org

RVT Applications Now Available Online

Applications for licensing registration as a RVT in Hawaii are available online here.

Senate Bill 2671 passed in 2016 which set the following requirements to qualify as a veterinary technician in Hawaii:

  1. Be at least 18 years of age
  2. Have successfully passed the Veterinary Technican National Examination
  3. Meets at least ONE of the following conditions:
    1. Has successfully completed a course of study at a program for veterinary technology accredited by the AVMA committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities;
    2. Be licensed, certified, or registered veterinary technician in good standing in another state having standards for registration comparable to those in this State; or
    3. Prior to July 1, 2021, submits a notarized document from an employer who is a licensed veterinarian and who certifies that applicant has five or more years of practical experience in Hawaii; provided that no reciprocity shall be given for practical experience gained outside of the State.

Information for licensing in Hawaii can be found on the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Professional and Vocational Licensing website. Additional information can be found at the HVTA website. Information about the VTNE can be found here.

Veterinarian Mental Health Research Study

HVMA members are invited to participate in a research study about mental health experiences and attitudes toward seeking mental health services among veterinary professionals. This study is being conducted by Kerry Karaffa, PhD and Tamara Hancock, DVM, MS, DACVP, PhD. Dr. Karaffa is a licensed psychologist and Mental Health and Wellness Coordinator for the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine, and Dr. Hancock is a veterinarian and Assistant Teaching Professor at the University of Missouri. This study will provide information that may ultimately be used to better understand mental health concerns and barriers to seeking mental health services among veterinary professionals.

Participation involves completing a 100-item electronic survey about your personal mental health experiences and your attitudes and perceptions about mental health services, including potential barriers to seeking services. The survey will take approximately 20 minutes to complete. Participation is voluntary and there are no direct incentives for participating in the study. However, information gained during the study may help improve mental health services for veterinary professionals. You may choose not to participate or discontinue participation at any time without consequence.

Due to the personal nature of some of the questions and to encourage honest responses, you will not be asked to provide your name or employment affiliation. Computer IP addresses will not be collected, and any demographic information (such as your age, ethnicity, or years in practice) will be presented in summary form when findings are reported. The data will be password-protected, and only the researchers and individuals responsible for research oversight at the University of Missouri Institutional Review Board will have access to the records.

Completing the survey may produce minor discomfort as you reflect about your mental health experiences. Otherwise, there are no risks involved in participating in the study in excess of those you would experience in everyday life. Your participation in this study will not affect any professional opportunities.

Your consent to participate is granted by selecting that you are over 18 years old, and by acknowledging that you have been fully informed about the procedures listed here, and you are aware of what you will be asked to do and the benefits and risks of participation. If you have any questions or concerns about this study you may contact the researchers. If you would like a copy of the results of this study, please contact the researchers and arrangements will be made.

Kerry M. Karaffa, Ph.D.
Licensed Psychologist
University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine
1600 Rollins Rd, Columbia, MO 65211
Email: karaffak@missouri.edu
Phone: (573) 882-4629
Fax: (573) 884-9607

Tamara S. Hancock, DVM, MS, DACVP, PhD
Assistant Teaching Professor
University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine
1600 Rollins Rd, Columbia, MO 65211
Email: hancockts@missouri.edu
Phone: (515) 771-9376

If you have any questions regarding your rights as a participant in this research and/or concerns about the study, or if you feel under any pressure to enroll or to continue to participate in this study, you may contact the University of Missouri Institutional Review Board (which is a group of people who review the research studies to protect participants’ rights) at (573) 882-3181 or irb@missouri.edu.

If you would like to participate in this study, please select the link provided below:

https://missouri.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6GaGzJvZKyQkSe9

Hawaii Pet Expo May 12-13, 2018

Volunteers Needed!

The Hawaii Pet Expo is sponsored and organized by the HVMA and will be held from May 12-13th this year. It has been an annual event for over 25 years and is FREE and well received by the public, with an average of 10,000 people attending each year.  The purpose of the Expo is to promote responsible pet ownership and strengthen the bond between people and their pets through educational displays, live animal demonstrations, and the latest in pet services and products.  The HVMA is looking for veterinarians who will promote our profession in a positive manner and educate the public on the need for professional veterinary care. If you are willing to volunteer your time to promote our profession and interact with the public, please sign up!

  • HVMA Booth: Veterinarians will be on site to guide visitors through our booth featuring The Year of the Dog, as well as answer questions from the public.
  • Make and Take (Kiddie Craft) Booth:  Assist kids and their parents with making finger puppets and other paper crafts to take home.  Keep booth clean and organized.
  • Greeters:  Pass out programs and poop bags at the door.  Help to direct traffic in and out of the Exhibition hall.  Smile and welcome people.
  • Information Booth:  Help direct people to exhibits, answer questions, make announcements, store lost and found items, collect food and monetary donations for the Hawaii Food Bank, prep poop bags, run errands, coordinate volunteers, and help clean up pet messes that are reported or seen.
  • Show Marshals:  The “Poop Patrol”.  Patrol Exhibition Hall and grounds outside, picking up pet messes.  Empty overflowing trash and cigarette bins outside hall and transfer to dumpster in back.  The good thing about show marshaling is that you get to walk around the hall and check out all the exhibits, although you are supposed to be working, not shopping during your shift!  We always need a lot of show marshals.

Click here to sign up online.

Saturday and Sunday the shifts are as follows:  9:30-12:00 am, 11:30 to 2:00 pm, and 1:30 to 4:00 pm. Please indicate your t-shirt size (M, L, or XL) at sign up to receive a  Pet Expo t-shirt. Name tags will be provided. Vets are encouraged to wear lab coats or smocks to identify themselves as veterinary professionals.

 

Volunteers should sign up online or by calling Ohana Vet Hospital at 845-1762. Paper sign up sheets may be faxed to 848-1632.

Equine Influenza Virus (EIV) Outbreak on Hawaii Island

Alert to veterinarians statewide regarding an ongoing Equine Influenza Virus (H3N8) outbreak observed on the Big Island of Hawaii. The disease appears to be limited to Hawaii Island at this time. The HDOA Animal Disease Control Branch is monitoring the situation and if you have diagnosed EIV in a horse, please contact the deputy state veterinarian in your county to assist us with tracking the disease event.

Hawaii County: Dr. Kim Kozuma (808) 974-6503 or (808) 365-4346
Maui County: Dr. Rick Willer (808) 873-3559
Kauai and Honolulu Counties: Dr. Travis Heskett (808) 483-7131

Quick Facts about Equine Influenza

Etiologic agent: Influenza type A, H3N8.
Species affected: Currently, only horses. The literature suggests that dogs and cats can become infected.
Transmission:
• via droplets and aerosols formed by coughing and sneezing
• direct or indirect contact with nasal discharge
• shedding of the virus often precedes clinical signs
• short incubation period, usually one to three days
• virus is typically excreted only 7-10 days after infection
Clinical signs: Acute respiratory disease, beginning with high fever (up to 106°), coughing, nasal discharge, and occasionally mild swelling of submandibular lymph nodes. Secondary bacterial infections may develop. Healthy adult horses will typically recover within one to three weeks,
although there may be a persistent cough.
Diagnosis: Can be presumed based on history, clinical presentation, and ruling out other causes of fever
• HDOA’s Veterinary Laboratory does not perform diagnostic testing for Equine Influenza.
• A number of mainland veterinary diagnostic laboratories can test for Equine Influenza and other infectious etiologies which can cause similar clinical signs. Contact the mainland laboratory of your preference for specific guidance regarding sample collection, preservation, and submission.
What has been observed in this event:
• Infection has been self-limiting, lasting approximately two to three weeks.
• Vaccinated horses were less likely to develop clinical signs than unvaccinated horses.
• Clusters of ill horses have been observed associated with equine events.
• Practicing good biosecurity reduces the likelihood of spread.

For more information, visit the website of the Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture, Animal Disease Control Branch at http://hdoa.hawaii.gov/ai/main/eiv/ or contact the Animal Industry Division at (808) 483-7106.

Thanks to Jenee Odani, DVM, DACVP and Dr. Travis Heskett, DVM, DACVP who contributed technical information for this article. [3/7/18]

2018 Legislative Update

HVMA Opposes SB2260

SB2260 requires veterinarians, upon request of the owner of an animal, to make available a copy of any prescription that the veterinarian has previously prescribed the animal free of charge. This bill will have a public hearing on Tuesday February 20, 2018 at 9:00AM at the Hawaii State Capitol conference room 229 by the Senate Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health. Read the complete bill text (brief) here.

Please send in written testimony opposing this bill via the Hawaii State Legislature website (steps detailed below) by Monday Feb 19th 9am and consider testifying in person at Tuesday’s hearing.

HVMA opposes SB2260 because it places unnecessary legislative burden on veterinarians and is of questionable value to the public. According to Hawaii Revised Statutes 471-10, licensed veterinarians in Hawaii are required to practice by “the recognized principles of medical ethics of the veterinary profession as adopted by the Hawaii Veterinary Medical Association and the American Veterinary Medical Association”. According to the AVMA Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics Section V.b.iii., “Veterinarians are obligated to provide copies or summaries of medical records when requested by the client.” Prior prescription information is already contained within a patient’s medical record and available upon request by the client (owner of the animal). In regards to current prescriptions, Section VII.f.iii. states: “Veterinarians are entitled to charge fees for their professional services: A veterinarian shall honor a client’s request for a prescription or veterinary feed directive in lieu of dispensing, but may charge a fee for this service.” AVMA’s Policy on Client Requests for Prescriptions states: “Veterinarians shall honor client requests to prescribe rather than dispense a drug (AVMA Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics). The client has the option of filling a prescription at any pharmacy.”

Please make the voice of veterinarians heard and submit your testimony today:
1. Go to the Hawaii State Legislature website.
2. In the upper right hand corner, either “Sign In” to your account or “Register” if you do not have an account.
3. Once signed in, click on “Submit Testimony” (first orange button in the middle of the page).
4. Under “Enter Bill or Measure” enter SB2260 and click “Get Hearing”.
5. Complete your testimony submission (you may upload a document or enter your testimony directly on the webpage) and click “Submit”.
6. Feel good about participating in the legislative process and shaping the practice of veterinary medicine in Hawaii!

The Hawaii State Capitol is located at 415 South Beretania Street in downtown Honolulu. If you have never testified in person before and have questions about the process, please feel free to email us at contact@hawaiivetmed.org.

Other Current Pending Legislation

HB2498 – Establishes and appropriates funds for one full-time equivalent permanent veterinary medical officer position within the Department of Health. HVMA SUPPORTS.


HB1823 – Defines emotional support animals and makes it a misdemeanor to knowingly make a misrepresentation regarding a service dog or emotional support animal.


HB2060 – Removes the word “Examiners” from the names of the State Board of Chiropractic Examiners, Board of Dental Examiners, Board of Examiners in Optometry, and Board of Veterinary Examiners. Renames the boards with titles that more accurately reflect their scope and duties. HVMA defers to BVE stance.


HB2072 – Prohibits certain restraints and tethers that endanger or deny sustenance to a dog. Specifies penalties.


HB2081/SB2566 – Appropriates funds to the Department of Land and Natural Resources to provide assistance and supplemental funding to the National Wildlife Research Center of the U.S. Department of Agriculture to conduct pilot field studies to evaluate control tools and develop a management plan to reduce the rose-ringed parakeet population on Kauai.


HB2270/SB2501 – Requires the Department of Human Services to establish ohana zones where homeless persons may reside. Appropriates funds.


SB2014 – Requires persons convicted of animal cruelty to register with the attorney general. Requires animal shelters, animal breeders, and pet stores to check whether an individual has been convicted of animal abuse when the individual applies to work or volunteer, or purchases or adopts an animal. Establishes penalties. Prevents persons convicted of animal cruelty from possessing, owning, or working in close proximity to animals. Requires police officers to be trained in identifying and investigating animal abuse.


SB2289 – Establishes the offense of sexual assault of an animal. Provides for impoundment and forfeiture of a sexually assaulted animal.


SB2435 – Requires the Department of Health to contract with a nonprofit animal rescue group to oversee caretakers of feral cats. Exempts registered caretakers of feral cats from state laws and county ordinances relating to the feeding and confinement of cats. Establishes a trap-sterilize-return process.


SB2461 – Establishes the offense of “misrepresentation of a service animal”. Changes the term “service dog” to “service animal” and amends the definition of that term to conform with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990


SB2929 – Establishes the Hawaii spay/neuter council to be administratively attached to the department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs. Establishes the Hawaii spay/neuter special fund. Imposes a fee on pet food to support the Hawaii spay/neuter grant program to spay and neuter dogs and cats. Makes an appropriation.

Happy New Year 2018

Aloha HVMA Members,

Hau’oli makahiki hou! We are glad you are a part of our veterinary community here in Hawaii. Membership registration is open, so please renew your membership at https://hawaiivetmed.org/membership/

Your HVMA membership allows us to help support you in your professional life. We seek to keep you informed on current events and provide legislative advocacy on issues pertinent to veterinarians in Hawaii. We provide members-only online content including classified ads, job postings, relief vet listings, and an online directory of member clinics. At our annual local conference, we bring in top-notch speakers and offer discounted registration to all current members. Through our organization, you will find networking, volunteer, and leadership opportunities.

Please let any of your new colleagues know that 2017 DVM graduates qualify for reduced membership dues ($50) in 2018, and 2018 DVM graduates receive complimentary HVMA membership in 2018. You do not need to be an AVMA member to be apply for HVMA membership, and if anyone needs help finding sponsors, just contact us. Please also notify us if you have reached the golden age of 65 and have 20+ years paid dues to qualify for Life Member status (membership dues waived).

We enjoyed seeing so many of you at our conference this past October, and hope to see many more at our 65th Annual Conference from November 8-11, 2018. Save the date!

As we continue to work to make the HVMA more accessible and relevant to its membership, please bear with us through the changes as we move to digital communications, and send us any feedback, suggestions, or interest in volunteering at contact@hawaiivetmed.org.

With warm aloha on behalf of your HVMA Board,

Jill Yoshicedo, DVM