President’s Message

2017 IVMA President Dr. Maria Cooper
2017 maria cooper

Dear Colleagues,

AVMA’s first convention in Indianapolis since 1941 is officially in the books. It was great to see so many of your faces in downtown Indy as both attendees and in volunteer roles. IVMA’s booth in the Exhibit Hall attracted countless visitors, and we loved opening up the IVMA offices that Saturday night for socializing with our members over wine and snacks. Feedback from AVMA staff and attendees from across the nation suggests that our capital city and Hoosier hospitality blew them away.

With so many great minds in town for the convention, the IVMA Executive Committee took the opportunity to meet with representatives from the NAVC Veterinary Innovation Council (VIC) to see how Indiana may be among the first states in the nation to pilot a veterinary telemedicine initiative. The VIC shared with us statistics which demonstrate that telemedicine is allowing more animals to get more care without a compromise in quality of care. Additionally, the quality of official medical records may actually improve when telemedicine is practiced because conversations are captured word for word. We also learned that in 47 states, human physicians may legally create a doctor-client relationship over a mobile platform. We feel that surely veterinary medicine is going to follow suit. IVMA’s Legislative Committee will focus on telemedicine this fall and potentially revisit our current Veterinary Practice Act as they look to ensure the protection of our members.

Since the IVMA Board’s strategic goal-setting meeting in March, our task forces and committees have been working diligently to implement the association’s objectives for 2017 and beyond.

On behalf of the Governance Task Force, I want to thank everyone who provided feedback on the proposed changes to IVMA’s governance structure. Comments were largely very favorable and we look forward to presenting the feedback to the Board of Directors this month. A change in our Bylaws could be right around the corner.

I’m happy to announce that our Membership Committee has developed the new IVMA Career Advancement Program (CAP). Think of the CAP program as a Power of Ten Leadership “2.0” program for IVMA members at any stage in their career looking to further their knowledge and skills as they relate to emotional intelligence, financial and legal issues in the clinic, conflict resolution, work-life balance, and wellness.  Indiana will be among the first VMA’s in the country to host such a program.

Members of the Continuing Education Committee have been busy planning valuable and exciting CE opportunities. We hope to see many of you on October 11th at historic Ft. Benjamin Harrison in Indianapolis where two tracks of CE will be offered. Furthermore, the CE schedule for our Annual Meeting in March is nearly full, and we have additionally booked a CE opportunity in beautiful French Lick in June, 2018. Last, but certainly not least, the Committee is full speed ahead in planning a Caribbean cruise with CE opportunities for next October, 2018. That’s right, cruising is back!

Meanwhile, the Health and Wellness Committee has launched their new private Facebook page just for Indiana veterinarians called “Be Well.” Posts and discussions have focused on stress management, the science of happiness, supporting each other’s victories, and providing advice to group members experiencing a plain crappy situation. In addition to Executive Director Lisa Perius and the IVMA officers, any current member of the group can add you to the forum if you wish to join us. Just let us know and we will get you added.

Finally, after completing a 17-day streak at the great Indiana State Fair engaging with the public about the value of our profession, we are looking forward to fall engagements. IVMA will be extending a warm welcome to the DVM class of 2021 at the annual Stethoscope Dinner and co-sponsoring the Indiana Animal Health Foundation Golf Outing during Purdue’s Veterinary Conference.

If you wish to get involved in any aspect of what our association is doing, please just reach out!

Best wishes for a wonderful fall season,

Dr. Maria Cooper