Curbside or Telemedicine... How to Decide?
Updated: Jun 30
Beth Innis, DVM
Wow! What a time to be living in the world!
We have all been asked to stretch our creativity these days to accommodate COVID-19. Veterinary medicine has certainly been no exception. Hospitals and clinics worldwide went from inviting pets and parents in to managing everything "curbside".
First, what is this "curbside" business?, you ask. Good question! In order to reduce the risk of transmission of this coronavirus, we are asking our pet parents to transfer their pet to us, keeping proper social distance, so that we might bring them into the clinic, keeping everyone's space separate. The clinic space is thoroughly cleaned beforehand and we are wearing our protective gear. Communication regarding pet updates and recent history, veterinarian or nurse assessment and plans to go home are done via phone and email.
For us at Sleepy Dog, this is quite a change! We went from inviting you into our exam rooms where you could perch on a nice, comfy chair with your dog on a nice orthopedic bed or cat in a cushy hide-e-hole box.... to waving through the window in our adjusted exam room 3! My fix it man (and handsome husband), Tom, put down some temporary rubber floors for us to wash more easily, and still allow for traction. What we lack in home-y decor, we are making up with extra love and encouragement from Nurse Sam and I!
One question I am being asked frequently is what is curbside worthy and what should be done online?
This is a really hard question in these times. For me, pets with pain or chronic diseases who have been managed successfully with acupuncture, chiropractic and / or cold laser, should still be afforded this if possible. Our patients are adjusting well to the new way of treatment, showing their adaptability as they always do!
If you are questioning if your pet should be seen, let's start with an email or call. We can help assess if your pet does need to come in or urgently go to the emergency room. If we can help manage things from afar (adjust or add in medicines, routines, diets, add home treatments, tutor you in massage, provide distance Reiki) we can gladly do that through our telemedicine. We even have a new app, TeleVet, to help us run this more seamlessly. Click the icon on our website home page to get set up!
When in doubt, please reach out! We might not be able to give you a hug right now, but we are here to help sort things out the best we can. We became veterinarians, vet nurses and vet receptionists because we love serving your four-legged family members and will continue to strive to do our best by them.
Check out our modified exam room below and me with one of our Dream Team inspirations....