7 Best Veterinary Practice Purchases for 2024
By Jenny Alonge, DVM, FFCP
The growing pet population and a greater awareness of animal healthcare importance have led to a surge in demand for quality veterinary services. To meet these demands, many veterinarians are looking for strategic investments that will not only help their practice offer the highest quality medicine and provide an optimum client/patient experience, but also generate revenue and provide a productive work environment. Keep reading to learn about the best purchases that will grow your practice in 2024.
1: Practice Information Management System
Veterinary practice management software helps you capture, store, and retrieve patient information, which improves data accuracy, patient care, and practice efficiency. A practice information management system (PIMS) benefits your practice by allowing you to better access and analyze data better, make more informed diagnostic and treatment decisions, optimize workflow efficiency, improve veterinary team communication and collaboration, and provide insights into your practice’s financial performance. Available PIMS features include:
- Electronic medical records
- Appointment tracking
- Inventory tracking
- Invoicing and accounting capabilities
- Online pharmacy
- Payment processing
- Links to in-clinic diagnostic equipment or external laboratories
- Portals to allow clients to view medical records, invoices, and diagnostic results
- Internal communication platforms
- Financial reports
2: Veterinary Dental Equipment
More and more pet owners are realizing the importance of dental health care for their pet, and your practice should offer dental services that meet your clients’ needs. Essentials for a veterinary dental suite include:
- Veterinary dental unit — Every practice should have a dental unit that includes an ultrasonic scaler to remove tartar and a high- and low-speed handpiece.
- Dental burs — Purchase a variety of dental burs, such as round burs for bone removal from tooth roots and crosscut fissure burs for sectioning multi-rooted teeth. In addition, ensure you have an adequate supply of your most-used burs, so you can quickly replace a bur that breaks during a dental procedure.
- Dental instruments — Dental hand instruments, including a complete set of winged elevators, periodontal probe, periosteal elevators, extraction forceps, mouth gag, and a suture kit, are required.
- Adequate lighting — Adequate lighting is critical when performing dental procedures, and a high-quality headpiece with a light and magnifying loupe is the best option.
- Dental X-ray unit —Radiographs are vital for a thorough dental examination and a dental X-ray unit is considered the standard of care. Ensure your unit is capable of taking patients’ full-mouth radiographs.
3: Artificial Intelligence-guided Veterinary Technology
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the veterinary field is growing steadily, helping veterinarians provide their patients with improved, more efficient diagnoses and treatments. Examples include:
- Radiology — An AI-automated radiograph analysis can provide image insights rapidly, without the need to wait for an available specialist.
- In-house diagnostic analyzers — In-house diagnostic analyzers, such as chemistry, hematology, and urine sediment analyzers, eliminate the need to identify cells by manual microscopy and offer diagnosis and treatment suggestions, allowing you to provide faster care for your clients.
- Stethoscope — AI-powered stethoscopes can help identify arrhythmias, murmurs, and other cardiac related disorders.
4: Wearable Devices
Veterinary healthcare wearable devices that can provide you and your team with important information are growing in popularity. Wearable technologies now are capable of continuous, non-invasive monitoring of vital parameters, ECG activity, sleeping habits, activity level, food consumption, and certain behaviors such as scratching or shaking. These devices allow veterinarians to detect early illness signs, track the patient’s condition, and determine if treatment strategy changes are necessary. They also help owners know when their pet needs veterinary care.
5: Collaborative Veterinary Consultation
You want your patients to receive the expert care they need, when they need it, but some clients may not be able to access or afford a specialist visit. However, services are now available that allow you to collaborate with veterinary experts to ensure you reach the correct diagnosis, which improves your patient’s health and increases your client’s satisfaction. These services connect you with a network of devoted board-certified veterinary specialists ready to share their expert knowledge.
6: Veterinary Professional Education
Invest in your veterinary team with educational opportunities that help them meet their full potential. Investing in your team’s education not only empowers team members in their job, but can also grow your practice, because you will be able to offer more services as they acquire new skills. Also, consider certifying your team as Fear Free or Cat Friendly to help bring in more clients wanting a low-stress veterinary experience for their pet.
Telemedicine has many benefits, including the ability to easily assess a patient’s condition after hours, strengthening client relationships, reducing cases lost to after-hours emergency veterinary hospitals, reducing the burden on front-desk staff, and helping triage appointment scheduling. Considerations when choosing a telemedicine vendor include:
- Ensure the telemedicine vendor’s application fits your specific workflow needs.
- Choose a cloud-based telemedicine application to ensure security is updated seamlessly.
- Look for a telemedicine vendor who will require little to no training for your clients and staff.
If you are looking for new technology or dental equipment to advance your veterinary practice, explore DVM Central’s extensive product categories that feature excellent quality animal health products from potential suppliers.