What is the difference between Critical Care Specialist versus an Emergency Clinic Veterinary?
In addition to attending veterinary college, a critical care specialist has completed an internship and residency focusing on patients, techniques and procedures involving emergency and critical care medicine. Once their training is complete, each resident must pass an examination administered by the American College of Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care (ACVECC). Only after the examination has been passed can they be called a board certified Critical Care specialist.
Patients who are in a life-threatening situation deserve the benefit of being seen by veterinary Critical Care specialists, who are able to use their day-to-day experience and training to provide the highest level of care for ill and wounded patients. Critical Care specialists handle a variety of emergencies and illnesses, and oversee their recover in an intensive care setting.
What should I expect when being seen by a criticalist?
The Criticalist will have already reviewed the past and present history provided by your family veterinarian prior to your arrival if we have received it ahead of time. Upon your arrival, your pet will be examined by a highly trained critical care technician to assess their immediate health concerns. If your pet is deemed stable, he/she will be brought back to you in the exam room. During your appointment, a complete physical will be performed by the Criticalist to assess your pet’s condition and retrieve a current set of vitals such as heart rate, respiratory rate, weight, temperature and blood pressure.
If emergent medical concerns are detected, your pet will remain in ICU for interventional treatment until they are stabilized, at which time the doctor will come in to review their findings and discuss the potential treatment plan for your pet. Further testing or treatment will be made based on the doctor’s assessment of your pet’s condition and his/her history. A detailed estimate will be presented to you and your consent received prior to starting any further diagnostics or treatments.
Who is taking care of my pet overnight?
Our critical care department is staffed with experienced Patient Care Technicians and overnight doctors who provide around-the-clock care, seven days a week, for our ill and wounded patients.
When can I expect an update on my hospitalized pet?
The doctor’s assistant will call you in the morning following your pet’s overnight stay in order to give you an update on your pet’s progress. At that time, they may recommend further treatment or testing on the doctor’s behalf. Your doctor will contact you in the afternoon to provide another detailed update along with any additional test results received, or in order to discuss further treatment. In addition to your health update, we will also provide you with a financial update.
Can I call to get an update on my pet after-hours?
If there are any concerns or changes in your pet’s condition, the on duty doctor will call to inform you. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide patient updates after 7 pm.
Do I have to give a Don’t Not Resuscitate (DNR) status?
Providing a DNR status does not in any way label patients as critical or to have a guarded prognosis. We ask for a DNR status only to respect your wishes for your pet during their hospitalization stay with us if any problems were to arise. We ask a status on all patients being hospitalized here as there are things that cannot be foreseen.