I work as a locum and go to a lot of practices that have little to no relationship with local physio/hydro/massage therapists. Do other people find this is a problem too?? Do we need better communication and collaboration between local pet care businesses and disciplines?
I do feel that there is a general lack of connectivity between professionals working within multi-modal pain management and rehab, and part of CAMs role is to hopefully increase awareness about the benefits of working more collaboratively. Barriers to collaboration include lack of awareness, time constraints and potential negative experiences as mentioned. Accreditation of therapists with a trusted body that oversees qualifications, training and cpd will help vets to trust in the quality of care that therapists can provide alongside them. As well as selective forgetfulness I feel many vets will genuinely forget during a busy day. At CAM we are working with vet students to help raise awareness and hopefully this will trickle through in coming years. Having worked as a vet in dedicated pain management practice for 11 years I see that things are much improved in many ways from where they were 10 years ago, and we still have a long way to go, particularly in recognising chronic pain in animals, or a potential for it, early.
A first step is for those vets aware of the benefits of multimodal collaboration to talk to each other and other therapists and present a united front. In general veterinary practice speaking with nurses and receptionists is likely the way forward initially.
Kathryn. Yes, the CPD sessions were full. In one practice it was mainly vet nurses but a couple of vets too. In another, it was just vets. It was clear at the time which vets ‘got it’ and who didn’t. Regarding a register, there are many complementary therapy specific ones which probably muddy the waters. Even in massage therapy, my practice, there are two. The IAAT (International Association of Animal Therapist) is the main one. All on there have to be insured, qualified, undertake CPD yearly which is checked and recorded and the register is recognised by insurance companies. But if the professionals don’t ‘get it’ at the start, they’re not going to look at a register I guess. The original post referred to communication and collaboration – this should be two way otherwise we complementary therapists are really just talking to ourselves – and we already believe in it.
It’s great to hear you offer CPD Beachbrighton- did you have good up take?
Is there a centralised database where practices can look for local therapists?
We are currently working very hard at Blue Bear Animal Rehab to forge links with local vets and maintain good relationships by professional and effective communication. We have recently opened a new centre, invited all the local vets along to our open days (we had 2). I think about 3 vets came! Although I do wonder if most of the invites didn’t make it past the reception desk! We had lots of nurses and receptionists though…so we are trying a different tack through them!! We’re going in to practices, we’re holding CPD events. We explain the differences between regulated (which is voluntary, we use NARCH) and non-regulated centres, we direct them to the NARCH Website. Having converted to hydro from nursing I think the ability to speak ‘vet’ helps! We’ve had the problem with ‘referal’ on our paperwork too, so we’ve changed it to ‘consent’ which they are a bit happier with. We don’t tend to get these problems with referral practices mainly GP, and often if the referral place has OK’d then the GP will too!
My vets won’t recommend a hydrotherapist in the area .. they will forward our history onto a hydro if I find one and are fine with my dog going but they won’ sign off as referred which does mean I can’ claim on insurance. This is I think because they had bad experiences in the past