The role of veterinary nurses has evolved over the past 40 years in scope of responsibilities and value to a practice. Vet nurses, Vet technicians, Vet assistance play an important role to vet clinics. Regardless of title, veterinary nurses are vital for an effective team and exceptional client and patient care.
1 - Versatility
Veterinary nursing comes with such huge job description. Vet nurses play various roles within the vet clinic such as: Lab technician, radiology technician, surgical technician, anaesthetist, pharmacy technician, dental hygienist, educator, councellor, cleaner, administrator, writer, trainer, manager and receptionist.
Veterinary nurses also their creativity when there are limited resources. For example, they turn fluid bags into hotties, turn boxes into crash carts, and create an ICU from a storeroom.
Veterinary nurses also show their versatility when they choose to specialise in a particular area of interest, making them more appealing to vets and clinics.
2 - Providing Financial Viability
Veterinary nurses help with a practice’s financial viability because they increase efficiency, including taking over tasks otherwise performed by veterinarians. Clinics that hire
experienced veterinary nurses can help improve a practice’s financial viability, by allowing them to perform their role to their maximum efficiency.
3 - Providing Optimal Patient Care
Often the veterinary nurse examines a patient, and bring patient-focused perspectives when a treatment plan is created. Their active participation and ongoing close interaction with patients can lead to recommendations. The veterinary nurse can ensure the best patient care by assisting the veterinarian in double-checking the details and accuracy of treatments and medications. A veterinary nurses’ education, training, and experience can add insight and precision.
4 - Ability to Anticipate
Veterinary nurses develop an uncanny ability to sense the needs and earn the trust of the veterinarian, clients, and patients. By performing preliminary examinations efficiently, taking thorough histories, listening carefully to veterinarian–client conversations, formulating cost estimates, and anticipating diagnostics and treatment, veterinary nurses build confidence in their abilities and increase practice efficiency.
With admit patients, veterinary nurses are often the first to sense changes in status, anticipate their needs, and intervene promptly. Their experience and knowledge of a patient’s clinical condition mean they are likely the first to note signs such as pale mucous membranes, sudden ECG rhythm changes, decreased alertness, altered breathing patterns, or increased effort.
5 - Bridging Communication Gaps
The veterinarian’s time with the client is limited, so veterinary nurses can bridge the communication gap with clients with practical explanations about the patient that the client can understand. Veterinary nurses' can help communicate with clients because listening to a non-veterinarian who speaks compassionately about their pet can help them better organise their thoughts and emotions.
For clients, veterinary nurses can help boost their confidence to provide the patient with optimal at-home care with detailed explanations and demonstrations, or support them when they need to make the difficult decision whether it is time to say goodbye.
Veterinary nurses, with all their special skills, knowledge, and attributes, expertise, compassion and willingness bring significant value to any practice.