Alternate Route News
MDC to Begin Working on Regulations to Approve Alternate Route Schools
- October 21, 2014 - The Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) directed its Multidisciplinary Advisory Committee (MDC) to begin working on regulations to approve Alternate Route schools. The direction included reviewing the educational requirements of the Alternate Route to insure that they are equivalent to AVMA guidelines as well as updating the Task List. See report
MDC Directed to Eliminate “Ad Hoc” Pathway
- Februrary 29, 2015 - At the February 19, 2015 meeting of the MDC, the Committee approved proposed regulations that would approve Alternate Route Schools and eliminate the “ad hoc” or self-directed pathway. They also agreed that the regulation would include a specific date when the “ad hoc” pathway would be eliminated.
VMB Did Not Review Ad Hoc Proposal
- April 28-29, 2015 - The VMB did not review the proposed regulations their April 28-29 meeting. The next VMB meeting will be on July 21-22, when the proposal will presumably be on the agenda. Regulations are currently taking anywhere from 1-5 years to complete the process, so it impossible to know at this point exactly when the regulation will be going into effect.
Veterinary Assistant Controlled Substance Permit (VACSP)
Nancy Ehrlich, RVT
Regulatory/Legislative Advocate, CaRVTA
The Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) held a special telephone conference meeting on June 17, 2015 to finalize wording for the Veterinary Assistant Controlled Substance Permit (VACSP) language.
CVMA sponsored the legislation that allows unregistered assistants to administer all drugs, including controlled drugs, under the Direct or Indirect Supervision of a veterinarian. The legislation requires...
...the VMB to write regulations setting up a program that allows assistants who want to be able to obtain or administer controlled drugs to be fingerprinted. Assistants who are found to be free of drug convictions will be issued a VACSP.
After hearing from CaRVTA, the VMB agreed that an assistant should be at least 18 years of age to apply for a VACSP. The hospital’s licensee manger will be required to sign an agreement with the VACSP holder specifying that the VACSP holder must cease obtaining or administering controlled drugs immediately upon termination of the relationship with the licensee manager.
VACSP holders will also have to either wear a name tag with their VACSP # on it or post their permit in a prominent location visible to all clients.
There are several steps that a person will have to complete before they can obtain or administer controlled drugs:
- Apply for and receive a VACSP (be over 18, pass fingerprint check - $50 fee for 2 yrs)
- Sign a Permit Holder/Licensee Manager Agreement
- Licensee Manager signs Licensee Manager Acknowledgement
Documents 2 & 3 must be filed with the VMB. Assistant cannot obtain controlled drugs until 2 & 3 are filed with VMB
The licensee manager is responsible to inform the VMB if they terminate the relationship with the VACSP holder. The VACSP holder may not access controlled drugs until they have a new agreement filed with the VMB.
The VACSP can be revoked if the holder is convicted of a drug offense.
The new language will not be going for public hearing. It will be published for 45 days. If there are any comments, they may need to hold a hearing. Assuming there are no comments and there is no hearing, the regulation could be in effect in 6-9 months at the earliest. In the meantime, remember that assistants who access controlled drugs must be background checked and found free of drug convictions. Veterinarians can be disciplined if they don’t do this.
Simas & Associates, Ltd. Advises on New Paid Sick Leave Law
Sacramento, CA - Effective July 1, 2015, California's new mandatory paid sick leave law requires virtually all employers to provide workers a minimum of three days of paid sick leave per year. All California employers regardless of size are covered under the new law. There is no exemption for small employers. The mandatory paid sick leave law applies to every California employer, even if the employer only has one employee.
"Most people assume that employers provide some form of paid sick leave because it is required under the law," explains Justin D. Hein, Attorney at the Sacramento and Santa Rosa offices. "However, that was not the case until recently. Rather, sick leave was considered an employee benefit. The law has now changed to make that benefit a mandatory minimum."
On the July 1, 2015, effective date, all full- and part-time California employees who work for 30 or more days in a year are eligible to receive sick pay. Employees are permitted to use the mandatory sick leave for their own illness, illness of family members, and for doctor appointments. “Family member” specifically includes children, parents, spouses, registered domestic partners, grandparents, grandchildren and siblings. Paid sick leave can also be used for leave related to domestic violence, sexual violence and/or stalking. And Employers must notify employees every pay period of their paid sick leave balances and separately track each employee's sick leave accrual and use.
"Unlike vacation pay, the mandatory sick pay is not being designated as a form of mandatory compensation," explained Hein. "So, unused-but-accrued sick leave is not something that employers must pay at the time of any termination or resignation."
The rules do provide employers with options on how to implement.
"This was mainly in recognition of the many employers who were voluntarily providing the sick leave, already, at the time the law was passed," explained Hein. "Not every employer was providing the sick leave the same way. Some were providing it on an accrual basis. Some were providing it all at once on an annual basis, or split up per quarter. And some were permitting employees to roll-over unused sick leave from one year to the next. So, the law is set up to absorb all of those systems and permit those employers to continue to do what they were doing - so long as some minimums were met."
However, that does not mean that existing employers are "let off the hook."
"No, employers with existing sick leave policies still need to do some administrative work to ensure that they are in compliance with the law," continued Hein. "First, the employer must post the new law in a conspicuous place of the workplace."
The poster must contain the following information:
- An employee is entitled to accrue, request, and use paid sick days.
- That retaliation or discrimination against an employee who requests paid sick days or uses paid sick days or both is prohibited.
- An employee has the right under this law to file a complaint with the Labor Commissioner against an employer who retaliates or discriminates against an employee.
"Second, employers are required to provide individualized notice to each employee," stated Hein. "This is a document that contains the specific paid sick leave information for the employer. Where the employer provides additional terms (e.g., creates caps on maximum use or accruals above the minimums), they must inform employees of those additional terms."
Luckily, the state of California has put together a form that permits employers to meet that obligation. The form can be found here: LC 2810.5 Notice to Employee.
For more information on Human Resources assistance, please visit our website at www.simasgovlaw.com.
Reg/Leg Report for April 29, 2015
The Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) met on April 28 in Sacramento. All members were present except for Pubic Member Elsa Florez.
The VMB members discussed updates to the Disciplinary Guidelines, which are used by judges and staff when determining what sort of discipline should be assigned for particular infractions. They decided to create a sub-committee consisting of Dr. Dick Sullivan and Public Member Kathleen Bowler to review the guidelines and report back.
Stephanie Trumm from Maximus, the company that provides the VMB’s Diversion Program for licensees with drug or alcohol issues, made a presentation regarding the program’s effectiveness. Dan Metz, RVT spoke about his experience with the program and how it changed his life for the better. The VMB and Ms. Trumm agreed that the biggest problem with the Diversion Program is that most...
licensees are unaware of it and, therefore, not taking advantage. It was agreed that both Maximus and the VMB must do better outreach to the profession. As a result, CaRVTA is working with Ms. Trumm to provide a presentation at our Back-to-School Conference at UC Davis in July.
The VMB reviewed proposed language for the regulation defining the parameters of the Veterinary Assistant Controlled Substance Permit (VACSP). Once the program is in effect, all veterinary assistants who want to be able to access controlled substances will be required to obtain a permit which will require fingerprinting to determine if they have any convictions for drug or alcohol offenses. The managing licensee of the veterinary practice will be required to submit a document to the VMB agreeing to supervise the VASCP holder. VMB staff will refine the proposed language to clarify the goals of the program. The VMB hopes to get the regulation into the approval process quickly. Until the regulation goes into effect, veterinary assistants who access controlled substances must be background checked by their employer to confirm that they are free of convictions for drug or alcohol offenses.
The VMB approved several changes to the Minimum Standards, as required by the Office of Administrative Law (OAL). The Minimum Standards regulation had been already approved by the VMB, but the OAL, which must approve all regulations, sent them back for some revisions. The regulation will now go back to the OAL for their approval.
The VMB made several appointments to their MultiDisciplinary Advisory Committee (MDC). Kristi Pawlowski, RVT was selected to replace Jennifer Boyle, RVT whose term had expired. Diana Hagel was reappointed to serve as a Public Member. Drs. Jon Klingborg and Bill Grant were also reappointed to serve as veterinarian members of the Committee. Each of the appointees will be serving a three-year term.
The proposed regulation concerning Animal Rehabilitation (AR) was discussed. The proposal states that only a veterinarian or an RVT or a licensed Physical Therapist (PT) under the Direct Supervision of a veterinarian may perform AR. CaRVTA testified that Direct Supervision for RVTs was inappropriate, as RVTs have been performing AR under Indirect Supervision for years with no complaints. CaRVTA pointed out that a veterinarian must examine the animal and prescribe AR prior to an RVT performing any procedure. RVTs are trained and licensed to recognize and deal with medical emergencies. Many veterinarians want to be able to send an RVT to a client’s home to follow-up care. CaRVTA also pointed out that requiring Direct Supervision would increase the cost and reduce access for many patients. The VMB was concerned that an animal’s condition might change after it was examined and, out of an abundance of caution, a veterinarian must be present when AR is performed. The VMB stated that they preferred to try Direct Supervision for a period of time and then re-evaluate whether it was really necessary. The proposal is now scheduled to go to Public Hearing in August.
Dr. Bill Grant presented the updated priorities for the MDC. Staff will review the lists of old and new priorities and report back at the next meeting. There was no discussion of the MDC’s proposal for changes to the Alternate Route.
While reviewing the VMB’s responses to the legislature’s Sunset Report, Public Member Judie Mancuso brought up that all veterinary personnel should be required to wear name tags. CaRVTA also supported the concept, since the public has no way of distinguishing one type of veterinary staff member from another unless they are identified. The VMB decided to put that issue on the agenda for a future meeting.
The VMB voted to approve a recommendation from the MDC that they sponsor legislation to allow veterinarians to compound medications. They voted to delegate staff to work with CVMA to come up with legislation that works with federal rules.
The next meeting of the VMB will be on July 21-22 in the Bay Area. To receive emailed notification of VMB and MDC meeting, sign up at https://www.dca.ca.gov/webapps/vmb/subscribe.php.
View past Regulatory/Legislative reports.
Don't let your CaRVTA membership expire!
Memberships that were extended through March 31, 2015 will be expiring at the end of the month. To find out when your membership will expire, go to the Member Directory.
CaRVTA is the only statewide association for veterinary technicians run by veterinary technicians. We represent you at the Veterinary Medical Board and the legislature. We keep you informed about issues of interest. We also offer world-class CE at our annual Back-to-School Conference for technicians and assistants at UC Davis. Our web site keeps you informed about CE and our Job Board lets you know about jobs that are available. We also offer many great Member Benefits like free legal consultation and discounts on RVT schools and textbooks. Take a moment to check your membership status & renew today by clicking here or using the Join/Renew button at the top of the page!
Memberships are good for one year from the date of renewal.
CVTEA Requests Your Input (Survey)
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA) is the entity responsible for accreditation of veterinary technology programs nationwide.
As part of a cyclical review process, the CVTEA is seeking input from entry-level veterinary technicians (graduating between the years of 2009 to 2014) on the requisite skills taught in veterinary technology schools and proposed changes to those requirements. The Committee asks for your input on how this list compares to the tasks you are asked to perform as an entry-level veterinary technician at your place of employment.
We would appreciate you taking the time to complete the following survey. Completion should take approximately 15 minutes. The survey deadline is March 31, 2015
Please note - this survey does not cover all the skills required or recommended by CVTEA. The survey only covers the following sections:
- OFFICE AND HOSPITAL PROCEDURES
- CLIENT RELATIONS
Your responses are voluntary and will be confidential. Responses will not be identified by individual. All responses will be compiled together and analyzed as a group.
Click here to participate in the survey!
Research Survey Invitation
Licenced vet tech Peg Wheeler asks for your help:
"Dear Colleagues – My name is Peg Wheeler. I am a licensed veterinary technician and the Program Director for the new Veterinary Technology program at York County Community College in Wells, Maine. I’m also a graduate student at the University of Southern Maine where I am working on my capstone project for my Master’s Degree in Adult and Higher Education...
“my focus really is on the value of mentoring”
"...Working on my Masters as I build this program has been serendipitous as I’ve been able to support much of our program building through various projects in my program. I'm currently working on developing our practicum experiences and I’m designing my capstone project at USM to research how we can best structure practicum experiences for veterinary technology students and my focus really is on the value of mentoring. I believe, and I hope to illustrate through study and interviews, that a student that finds a good mentor as part of a practicum experience will have a more meaningful learning experience. I am writing to you in hopes of getting feedback from veterinary technicians about their educational experience. I have set up a survey through surveymonkey and here is the link. . I would deeply appreciate it if you could share this with any vet techs/graduates you think would be willing to participate. It is anonymous unless they wish to provide comments with names, etc.
In addition to completing the survey, I would love to hear any thoughts about what worked best or what didn’t work so well in the educational experiences of your members. Anyone who would like to contribute comments directly to me is welcome to email me at either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your assistance and please let me know if you have questions!
Peg Wheeler LVT"
You can take the survey here or contact Peg at email@example.com.
2015 IVECCS Website is LIVE!
The 2015 International Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Symposium (IVECCS) website is now LIVE!
IVECCS offers the highest-quality continuing education and is attended by the world's most progressive veterinarians, technicians and practice managers representing specialty/referral practice, general practice, academia, and research institutions.
The theme for IVECCS 2015 is "Respiratory Emergency & Critical Care" which will be integrated into the wide range of emergency and critical care topics included in the 400 hours of scientific program presentations. Great science and practical application are equally emphasized in our IVECCS program. Comprehensive Practice Management program included. No national meeting is more highly acclaimed!
This year our venue is the Gaylord National Harbor, a breathtaking setting on the banks of the historic Potomac River, minutes from the Washington DC monuments, museums and Old Town Alexandria. Seize the opportunity, come early, enjoy the area and participate in this powerful CE experience.
Click here for more information.
Southern California Veterinary Employee Survey
This 5 minute survey is for Southern California employees that work alongside veterinarians (DVMs). Your answers will help researchers investigate current DVM communication skills and veterinary employee job satisfaction.
Read instructions, and complete the survey, here.
New Veterinary Team Pay Report
DVM360 has published an article taking "a close look at what veterinary team members earn, how satisfied they are in their jobs, and whether they are sticking around in the profession."
Read about it here.
Call for Papers: ‘Best Practices in Veterinary Technology Education’
The Journal of AVTE (The Association of Veterinary Technician Educators) is accepting submissions for its inaugural issue.
To learn more you can visit the AVTE website and read the official call for submissions.
Job Fair for Foothill College Students and Alumni
Foothill College, in Los Altos Hills, is holding an Internship & Career Fair on the evening of February 4th. The fair is open to current and former Foothill College students. The doors of their Dining hall (Room 2201) open at 5:30 for registration and Networking. At 6:00 you'll hear about "Careers in Veterinary Medicine" from Dr. Julie Smith, the Medical Director at SAGE. The job fair will end at 8:00.
They ask that you RSVP and bring a copy of your resume to share with employers.
For additional information about this event they as that you email Phuong Tran at, firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact Dr. Lisa Eshman, Veterinary Technology Program Director, at email@example.com, or by phone at (650) 949-7203.
Educational Opportunity in Florida
The University of Florida Small Animal Hospital is offering paid internships for graduate veterinary technicians. They are currently recruiting for the 2015-2016 academic year.
See this page on the university's website for details.
Anesthesia Free Teeth Cleaners Put Out of Business
Canine Care; Apollo Pet Care, Inc; and Cindy Collins accepted a stipulated final judgement and permanent injunction against performing anesthesia free teeth cleaning without a license. They were also ordered to pay $150,000 by the Superior Court of California, County of Contra Costa on October 16, 2014. There are 10 violations listed in the injunction. Ms. Collins had been a leader in the 'anesthesia free dentistry" movement.
For more details, see the Division of Investigation Media Release.
Jennifer Loredo Joins CA Veterinary Medical Board
Jennifer Loredo, 34, of Riverside, has been appointed to the California Veterinary Medical Board. Loredo has been the supervising registered veterinary technician at the Riverside County Department of Animal Services since 2005. She was a registered veterinary technician at Advanced Critical Care and Internal Medicine from 2004 to 2005 and at the Animal Hospital of Walnut from 2001 to 2004. Loredo was a patient relations representative at Magan Medical Clinic from 1997 to 2003. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $100 per diem. Loredo is registered without party preference. Kim Williams, the first RVT to serve on the Veterinary Medical Board, was appointed in 2010 and has been replaced by Ms. Loredo.
Governor Signs Bill Providing for Paid Sick Leave Starting July 2015
Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today signed the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 (AB 1522) by Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), which provides paid sick days to the millions of Californians -- roughly 40% of the state's workforce -- who do not currently earn this benefit.
This bill specifically requires employers to provide paid sick leave to employees who work 30 or more days within a year from commencement of employment and employees will earn a...
...minimum of one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked.
"Whether you're a dishwasher in San Diego or a store clerk in Oakland, this bill frees you of having to choose between your family's health and your job," said Governor Brown. "Make no mistake, California is putting its workers first."
"As a single working Mom, I know first-hand the challenge of having to juggle a sick child who needs to see a doctor and your responsibilities at work," said Assemblymember Gonzalez. "But no parent should have to experience the heartache of having to choose between making the rent and taking care of their child. I am exceptionally proud to have authored this pro-family, pro-worker and pro-public health legislation and very grateful that my Democratic colleagues in the Legislature and Governor Brown also appreciate the need enough to make California the leader in the nation on this issue."
With the Governor's signature, California becomes only the second state in the nation to require paid sick leave. The Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 will go into effect July 1, 2015.
Another successful Back-to-School-Conference was held in Gladys Valley Hall on the UC Davis campus on July 26-27. The 7th Annual Back-to-School Conference, which is co-sponsored by CaRVTA and UC Davis, is the largest all technician conference in California, if not the US.
The CaRVTA Board Members at BTS
300 technicians and assistants attended the conference in-person and by live webinar. This year, all 3 tracks were available by webinar, making the conference a very convenient way to obtain all 16 hours of required interactive CE. In addition to the 3 lecture tracks, there were 2 hands-on workshops, which gave the attendees the opportunity to learn about anesthetic protocols and monitoring directly from experts from the UC Davis Veterinary School.
The conference received support from a generous group of sponsors, most of whom had exhibit tables for the attendees to visit. The sponsors included Zoetis, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Cattle Dog Publishing, Covidien, Dechra, Embrace Pet Insurance, Henry Schein, IDEXX, Jorgensen, Mid-Peninsula Animal Hospital, Surgivet Smiths Medical, Trupanion and Vetoquinol. CaRVTA extends a hearty thank you to the sponsors for their support of technician education.
A BTS attendee receives
In addition to the excellent education and the exhibits at the conference, attendees were delighted by the many raffles and opportunities to win fun prizes donated by the sponsors and CaRVTA. With so many technicians in attendance, Back-to-School was a great opportunity to network and to meet colleagues from around the state.
CaRVTA and UC Davis are already working on plans for next’ year’s 8th Annual Back-to-School. Ideas or suggestions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
CaRVTA's Annual Meeting
The California Registered Veterinary Technicians Association held our annual meeting during the Saturday lunch hour at the Back-to-School Conference. CaRVTA President, Allyne Moon, presented Sandy Gregory with CaRVTA's RVT of the Year award, which consisted of a beautiful plaque, a $500 honorarium and free conference registration. She also unveiled the Nancy Ehrlich Scholarship - a needs based scholarship available to CaRVTA members in need of CE assistance. She also announced that Brenda Baze, RVT was the winner of the Bob Smith Memorial Award (a Littman Cardiology III Stethoscope), and the exciting news that the Veterinary Medical Board had unanimously voted to back CaRVTA’s petition to the Governor to declare the 3rd week of each October, CA RVT Week.
Allyne discussed openings on the Board of Directors and how to run for office. CaRVTA Directors and Mentor Committee Chairs Jeff Backus and Stephen Cital held an informational meeting about the Mentor Committee during the late afternoon break. CaRVTA Treasurer and Legislative Committee Chair, Nancy Ehrlich, was on hand both days answering questions and giving advice on VMB and RVT Alternate Route Issues.
All in all, this was a successful Symposium. Special thanks to all of our sponsors and vendor, who’s generous support made this event possible. We can’t wait to see everyone again next year! If you would like to donate to CaRVTA’s Nancy Ehrlich Scholarship fund, please visit www.carvta.org, click the donate button in the upper right corner, and enter your donation on line.
Click here to download more about the Bob Smith Award.
Dining with Dogs
Governor Jerry Brown has signed the Dining with Dogs bill that allows restaurants with outdoor eating areas to serve people with dogs in tow. Here's a link to the press release: www.socialcompassioninlegislation.org/pdf/dining-with-dog-signed-by-gov.pdf
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Now Available! CaRVTA's RVT Exam Study Guide
CaRVTA has just released our latest publication, a new RVT Exam Study Guide for RVT candidates taking the new Law Exam. Beginning March 1, all candidates will be required to take the California Veterinary Technician Examination (Law Exam) plus the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE). The Study Guide contains all of the laws and regulations that may appear on the law exam test in one handy book. Buy Now at the CaRVTA Online Store!
Support the Morris Animal Foundation's Golden Retriever Lifetime Study
More than 70 million dogs live in the United States. Half of them over the age of 10 will die of cancer. In fact, cancer is the leading cause of death in dogs over the age of 2. CaRVTA is a proud supporter of the Morris Animal Foundation's Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, which will track 3,000 volunteer Golden Retrievers' health for life in order to gain insights into preventing and treating cancer and other canine diseases. The Foundation is seeking to enroll 3,000 volunteer Golden Retrievers for this study, which will collect observational data over the next 10 to 14 years to help scientists learn how to prevent cancer and other diseases that take the lives of our dogs too soon. If you are an owner, enroll your dog today. If you are a veterinarian, encourage clients to register. If you are a breeder, help spread the word. Visit caninelifetimehealth.org to learn more!