News, updates, and practice tips for today’s veterinarian.
Vol. 2 No. 2 April/May
A Closer Look
Managing your vaccination protocol
A WELL-MANAGED VACCINATION PROTOCOL ENCOURAGES PERSONALIZED RISK ASSESSMENTS, TWICE-A-YEAR WELLNESS EXAMS, AND A HIGHER STANDARD OF CARE.
Last year, a dachshund visited the Castleton Pet Clinic in Indianapolis. Administering all needed vaccines during one visit wasn’t an option because the dog had experienced pre- vious vaccine reactions, says practice manag- er Glenn Shay. But his wife, Dr. Carolyn Shay, still had to protect the dog—and the community. Dr. Shay administered a three- year rabies vaccine and followed up six months later with Duramune Adult, a USDA-licensed canine vaccine with three- year challenge data for canine parvovirus, canine distemper virus, and canine aden- ovirus. “By managing the dog’s vaccination protocols, we protected our community while still offering our patient the best care,” says Shay.
Practitioners with well-managed vacci- nation protocols use risk assessment tools to select antigens and set administration frequency. “Managing antigen selection and frequency of boosters is drawn from evidence-based assessments of vaccine effi- cacy and duration of immunity and protec- tion,” says Edward Wakem, DVM, a field veterinary consultant for Fort Dodge Animal Health. “Then you consider the individual pet’s risks.” Using a managed vaccination protocol ensures that pets re- ceive only the vaccines indicated for their disease risks at optimum booster intervals.
To get you started, Fort Dodge offers a vaccine checklist (See Sample vaccination protocol) to help develop an individualized vaccination protocol. This worksheet acts as a take-home aid for clients and rein- forces the pet’s present and future health- care needs. Fort Dodge also offers a pet wellness checklist to guide you through the steps of a thorough wellness exam.
Page 2: Duramune Adult antigen update Page 3: Tour for Life finds new homes for shelter pets
The benefits Managed protocols help encourage twice- a-year wellness exams, Dr. Wakem says, which gives you more opportunities to offer pets all of the care they need. “For example,
some practitioners may administer a tri- ennial core antigen vaccine and elect to give Lyme disease and leptospirosis vaccines annually.” You can then spread these annu- al vaccines over two visits, he says. During the six-month checkup, a technician can use a wellness checklist to review the pet’s health and administer the appropriate vac- cines at the direction of a veterinarian.
For pets with vaccine reactivity, a man- aged protocol may help decrease the likeli- hood of an adverse reaction and make it eas- ier to determine which vaccine caused the pet’s reaction. And because you’ve spent time educating clients about their pets’ indi- vidual risks, clients understand that you ad- minister vaccines based on their pets’ needs.
Managed protocols also allow clients to spread veterinary costs over multiple visits. This is great news for you, too, because you may be able to provide additional serv- ices the pet needs. For example, some pet owners find the cost of additional diagnos- tic tests, such as blood work, prohibitive at a single annual visit, Dr. Wakem says. Clients may be more willing to opt for blood tests if they’re spreading the costs over more than one visit.
Assess pets’ risks Dr. Wakem says veterinarians should take these steps before modifying a patient’s vaccination protocol:
Consider the pet’s age, lifestyle, and health status; socioeconomic patterns in the area; and client compliance.
Factor in the genetic diversity of patient populations.
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