During Global Pet Expo 2015, research firm GfK announced that 35.2% of the US’ 75 million Millennials (people age 18-34) own a pet, compared to 32.8% of Baby Boomers (age 51-70). Millennials like to try the latest technology, will spend more on their pets (including veterinary care and pet services), and are likely to use social media to connect with brands, services, and read online reviews before making their purchase decision (source).
Social media is a powerful tool your clinic can utilize to create, maintain, and grow relationships with clients in your community. It allows you an easy opportunity to organically connect one-on-one with clients to earn their trust, business, and loyalty. However, if you don’t think your clients are on social media, consider this: During the fourth quarter of 2015, Facebook was accessed by close to 1.59 billion users on a monthly basis.
Corporate mergers are on the rise in the veterinary industry. Corporate-owned clinics are armed with mounds of data they utilize to better their clinics every day, educate and persuade pet owners, and work directly with manufacturers to lower product prices and increase margins.
How will you, the privately-owned independent clinic, stay competitive?
The Alliance for Practice Advancement is dedicated to providing you, the independent veterinary clinic owner, the tools and resources needed to get a better handle on your business. Unbury yourself from paperwork, get access to a wealth of knowledge and data, and overcome the fear of change holding you back from true success.
Thank you for your application to join the Alliance for Practice Advancement. Your submission will be reviewed and a representitive from the APA will be in touch shortly.
In the media, and want more information about Veterinary Hospitals Association? View our 2016 Media Kit!
Established in 1984, VHA is a member-driven association organized to represent the interests of members and the veterinary community. VHA currently serves nearly 400 member veterinary practices and over 800 clinic owners, doctors, veterinary technicians, practice managers, and staff.
VHA is dedicated to building relationships with manufacturers, securing better pricing and margins for its members, providing dignified cremation services, offering affordable business services, and returning most profits to members in the form of a year-end rebates.
Quick ReferenceNote: While the VHA and the Members Services Consultants offer assistance to you and your clinic regarding this, and other matters of sensitivity, ultimately the liability of compliance falls on the clinic. Any information compiled and forwarded to clinics is unofficial and to be considered as a resource. Forms that are completed with the assistance of the VHA are merely examples and guidelines.
What is The Red Flags Rule?The Red Flags Rule (11/9/07) is a section of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (“Fact Act”) of 2003 which is a federal law requiring financial institutions and creditors to establish guidelines regarding the prevention of identity theft.
The Red Flags Rule essentially means that clinics and small businesses can be held accountable for identity theft unless they have created a “culture of security” in their office, including:
- Identifying Red Flags in their office
- Creating a written identity and security policy that is approved by a board of directors or a senior level employee
- Updating the accompanying procedures when necessary
- Appointing a person in the office to be a “compliance officer” for these policies
- Training all relevant employees on these policies
- Have evidence of this training
- Ensuring that vendors who are provided with any personal information (ie: credit card processing companies) also have a sufficient policy regarding securing this information
Things to think about are: Who has access to your office (ie: cleaning/maintenance)? Is private information secured in a locked drawer? Are computers secured with encryption and passwords? Do employees have to sign a confidentiality agreement? Are you compliant with FACTA disposal rules (ie: shredding)?
Who Is Required To Follow The Red Flags Rule?On Dec. 18, 2010, President Obama signed into law S. 3987, a bill that removes certain businesses including most veterinary practices and other health care practices from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)’s “Red Flags Rule.” Although S. 3987 does not specifically mention veterinarians or any other professionals, it exempts from the definition of “creditor” those businesses that merely advance funds on behalf of a person for expenses incidental to a service provided. This definition is narrower than that adopted by the FTC, with the intent of exempting small businesses and other service providers who do not receive payment in full from their clients at the time they provide their services.
Original regulations state that required parties include Financial institutions and “creditors”. This definition was extremely broad and the FTC postponed the compliance date numerous times while lobbyist urged for a clarification of the word “creditors”. AVMA and other medical organizations pushed legislators to exempt us from this rule and finally won when President Obama signed S. 3987 in December 2010.
Adrian Hochstadt, JD, assistant director for state legislative and regulatory affairs in the AVMA Communications Division, states on the AVMA website: “The training and resources we provided not only were designed to help with compliance with this federal rule, but perhaps more important, will help these practices protect themselves,” Hochstadt said. “The federal compliance issue may go away now, but you still have a risk management issue. You still have the expectations that clients have that their private information will be protected.”
Where do I Get information?
AVMA Website –recent info on AVMA’s recommendations, links to training and implementing the plan, FTC info, and press releases: http://www.avma.org/issues/FTC_red_flags_rule.asp
FTC Website – full text of “Red Flags” Rule, How-To guide, Red Flags Rule template, FAQ’s, etc. http://ftc.gov/redflagsrule
What do I need to do if I want to implement a written plan?
The following are choices on how to establish your written plan. No matter which option you choose, the plan should be implemented into the practice and administered to employees with periodic updates and retraining.
Create your own written plan or fill in Red Flag Template offered by FTC. Form and How-To Guide are available online at: http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/business/idtheft/bus23.pdf or http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/redflagsrule/RedFlags_forLowRiskBusinesses.pdf
*Information compiled from the FTC website and the AVMA website March 2011
Dalco is one of the largest janitorial and sanitation supply and equipment distributors in the region. They are a family owned company that has been in business since 1959. Dalco sells over 10,000 sku’s and carries all the major manufacturer’s you likely have used or are familiar with, such as Multi-Clean, Kimberly-Clark, Gojo, Rubbermaid, Tennant, Georgia Pacific, Diversey and more.
Innovative Office Solutions provides every office supply you need in your clinic with very competitive prices. VHA compared Staples and Office Depot to find that Innovative came out on top. There are no minimum orders and FREE next day delivery. Plus, Innovative contributes 5% of sales to the MVPD!
Company & Contacts
151 E. Cliff Road
Burnsville, MN 55337-1551
Phone: 952-808-9900 or 1-866-574-5389
Paper – Universal Copy Paper 20 lb., 81/2 x 11, white, 5000 sheets/ carton
Pen – Paper Mate, Ballpoint Pen, Black Ink
Staples – Universal Standard Chisel Point 210 Strip Count Staples, 5,000/box
Tape – Universal Invisible Tape, ¾ inch x 1000 inches, 1” Core, Clear, 6/Pack
Turnaround: Free next day delivery
Contact your Inside Account Representative or log onto www.innovativeos.com. There are no minimum orders and IOS invoices through VHA.
Are you interested in learning how VHA Business Services can help better the performance of your veterinary practice, and give you more time with patients? Fill out the form to set up a complimentary business services consultation!
Veterinary Hospitals Association is a co-op for veterinary supplies and services, created by veterinarians for veterinarians. For over 30 years, VHA has been providing stellar services to nearly 400 clinics in the Midwest by providing quality products at affordable prices, ethical and reliable cremation options, and ongoing continuing education opportunities to ensure our veterinarians are at the top of their game.
VHA is Local
When you choose to bring your pet to a veterinarian who is a member of VHA, you are helping your neighbor, your friend, or even your family member continue to do business in the community. 99% of VHA member clinics are locally owned and operated, and proudly display this badge on their website. When you bring your pet to one of our members, you're keeping your dollars and pet care local.
VHA Helps Keep Costs Down
VHA provides quality goods and services to veterinarians at affordable prices. We work with leading manufacturers and suppliers to negotiate better pricing on products, which helps keep the cost of goods low and affordable for our veterinarians - who pass the savings on to you. In addition, we partner with local service providers to be a one-stop shop for our veterinarians, giving them more time to spend with your pets.
VHA was Founded on Doing Cremation Right
Veterinary Hospitals Association was established in 1984 with one goal in mind - to help improve the landscape for veterinarians. At the time, cremation was unreliable and very costly, so a group of veterinarians banded together to create a co-operative founded on helping serve their clients needs and provide excellent ethical and reliable cremation services. From there, VHA grew to include group purchasing to lower the cost of products, decrease product waste, and pass savings on to veterinarians and their clients.
VHA Supports Continuing Education
The veterinary industry is constantly changing, improving laws and regulations and updating industry standards. To provide excellent levels of care, veterinarians and their staff are required to continue their education on an annual basis by earning credits. VHA provides opportunities for members to earn their continuing education (CE) credits at low-cost or no-cost options throughout the year. The information they learn helps them uphold and improve safety standards, general practice techniques, business strategies and more.