Dr. Melissa Lacaze
Dr. A. Melissa Garcia-Lacaze received her DVM from Texas A&M University in 1998. She then completed a one-year emergency and critical care internship followed by a three-year emergency and critical care residency at the Animal Emergency Center in Glendale, WI. Dr. Lacaze joined Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists in 2002, and became board-certified by the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care in 2003.
Dr. Colleen Willms
Dr. Colleen Willms received her DVM degree in 1998 from the University Of Wisconsin College Of Veterinary Medicine. After graduation, she completed a one-year rotating internship at Auburn University. Subsequently, she undertook a 3-year, ACVECC-approved residency with Drs. Rebecca Kirby and Elke Rudloff, two highly regarded and board certified veterinary criticalists. Dr. Willms worked at Alabama Veterinary Specialists for 2 years as the director of the ICU and critical care service prior to joining Gulf Coast Veterinary Internists. She was board certified by the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care in 2005. Dr. Willms, her pets Big-Un and Nutter Butter, joined the GCVS family in February, 2005 .
Dr. Diane McGee
Dr. Diane McGee earned both her Bachelor’s Degree in Biomedical Science and Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine at Texas A&M University. Since then, she has worked in alongside veterinary specialists in various emergency medicine and specialty hospitals around the country. Her past experiences include practicing medicine at El Abrigado Animal hospital in New Mexico and Emergency Animal hospital of NW Austin. She worked for 5 years at the Animal Emergency hospital of North Texas where she was an emergency doctor and hospitalist for a 24 hour emergency and critical care facility. There she was responsible for coordinating patient care amongst multiple specialists including internists, cardiologists, surgeons, ophthalmologists and dermatologists. Most recently she has been an emergency associate at Sugarland Veterinary Specialists. Dr. McGee currently works in our critical care department as a hospitalist where she collaborates closely with our specialists in triage, coordinating patient care, initiating treatment plans and providing compassionate interactions with owners and communicating with our referring veterinarians. Her specific areas of interest include toxicology, infectious disease and gastroenterology.
What is a Diplomate of Veterinary Critical Care
A specialist in emergency and critical care is a specially trained veterinarian who is dedicated to treating life-threatening conditions. They must first be a graduate of a recognized veterinary school, then receive a minimum of 3 additional years of intense training in emergency, surgery, and critical care medicine through completion of an American College of Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care (ACVECC) approved residency. The residency focuses on the most up-to-date techniques for diagnosis and treatment of life-threatening disease processes in an emergency and for the critical time while the animal is recovering.
Once the veterinarian has completed these years of specialty residency training, the individual must then pass a tough board-certification examination given by the American College of Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care (ACVECC). Upon successful completion of the training and passing of the examination, the veterinarian is a Diplomate of the ACVECC, is termed a ‘specialist’, and is board-certified in veterinary emergency and critical care.