Access to vet care used to be almost impossible for those who lived in the remote areas of Australia. Life can be difficult for both animals and humans, and lack of veterinary care could be a death sentence.
Faced with such dilemmas, Sue Samuelsson, a qualified Senior Vet and founder ofÂ i-Vet, an online veterinary service which provides access to veterinary care for remote or disabled clients. It has made a huge difference to the lives of pet owners not only in Australia, but also in parts of the world where vet care is almost impossible to access.
The tele-vet medicine service uses video-conferencing and the internet to provide consultations with qualified vets. For those owners of cats, dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, birds and other small pets living remotely, medicine can be prescribed, perhaps supplied by a local chemist, or express posted or couriered.
This service is a wonderful asset for the companion animal owners who are unable to access vet care where they live. In many other areas of the world, legislation prevents this ease of access. In the US, states vary a great deal between what they will and wonâ€™t legally allow. In many cases, itâ€™s not the vet clinic that runs the services, but rather commercial companies that operate electronic systems that veterinary practices can buy into. Unlike these services, i-Vet experts are hand-selected veterinarians who are personally reviewed, vetted, and continually monitored.
i-Vet consultations are a new and specialised service, employing highly trained vets with many years experience. They may have even previously seen your animal on a one-to-one personal basis. By using video-conferencing and the internet, the vets can see your pet, examine areas of concern, make legal clinical records and provide medication if needed.
The consultation doesnâ€™t stop there. If required, on-going prescriptions can be sent, as well as vaccination reminders. Even pet owners who theoretically have access to a veterinary service can benefit from an online consultation. Perhaps the clinic is closed, or the owner is unable to transport an animal. When an anxious pet owner has an animal with a minor injury or even an emergency and simply needs advice and reassurance, a video consultation brings peace of mind. In addition, owners can access â€œhow toâ€ videos which guide owners through techniques such as holding an animal correctly for the consultation and how to take a temperature correctly.
Undoubtedly this innovative company is the way of the future for veterinary services. Particularly for remote clients, being able to access round-the-clock veterinary advice over the internet is a huge relief.
Dr Sue Samuelsson is a leading, award-winning Australian vet, Financial Review 100 Women of Influence Winner – 2016, and an inspirational speaker. She is also author of Disruptive Technologies and Your Pets.
i-Vet has been named the winner of the Innovation Commendation Award at the 2016 Chief Minister’s NT Export & Industry Awards. These awards recognise outstanding achievements of NT exporters and industry leaders and promote the importance of international trade.
The Northern Territory winners will progress as national finalists in the Australia Export Awards to be held later in the year.