Why a Pet Owner Appreciates an AAHA Accredited Hospital

MVC’s Top Ten List

You know you are going to a hospital that has chosen to be the best it can be!
All veterinary clinics in Ontario (including us!) need to be accredited by the College of Veterinarians of Ontario (CVO). Markham Veterinary Clinic has voluntarily chosen to go further, by becoming accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) requiring evaluation on over 900 standards of pet care and client service! It assures you that your precious family member will receive the highest quality of care and that you will receive the highest level of service. Only 15% of pet hospitals in the USA and only 7% in Canada are AAHA accredited and we are one of them.

You know your pet will be cared for by a veterinarian committed to ongoing learning!
One of the AAHA standards mandates each veterinarian in the hospital to attend documented continuing education each year. CVO currently only has a voluntary requirement for ongoing learning. Having standards this high ensures the veterinarians of Markham Veterinary Clinic are up to date with all the latest developments in veterinary medicine.

You know you have a trained veterinary technician taking care of your pet whether it be in the office, in the hospital or in surgery!
AAHA requires registered veterinarian technicians (RVT) to be on staff taking care of your pet. CVO does not require the use of trained technicians in their accreditation. These are technicians that have received 2 or 3 year college training in animal care and must receive at least 20 hours of continuing education every 2 years to keep their skills at a top level. In fact, even our veterinary assistants receive 15 hours of documented training every 2 years. AAHA accreditation validates the extra work and education that we invest in our practice and our practice team.

You know you are going to a hospital where anesthetic safety is of highest priority for your pet!
At Markham Veterinary Clinic,every pet receives a pre-anesthetic evaluation by a veterinarian the morning of any premedication, sedation or anesthetic. Not only does your pet receive a full physical examination, your pet’s history and pre-anesthetic blood is also reviewed allowing a clear current anesthetic risk assessment. A customized anesthetic plan is formulated for your special furry friend. No pet undergoes anesthetic at Markham Veterinary Clinic without the added safety of intravenous fluid support. We also ensure that one team member is continually monitoring the anesthetic in addition to our extensive electronic measurement. (an AAHA requirement!) In accordance to the AAHA standards, all of the anesthetic equipment and monitors are serviced and calibrated regularly.

You know you are going to a hospital that has an extensive protocol for handling infectious patients!
Markham Veterinary Clinic, in accordance with the standards set out by the AAHA accreditation, takes every precaution to keep both you and your pet safe from infection. We have a specially constructed isolation room with negative pressure ventilation; its sole purpose is to provide care to contagious patients without endangering any of the other hospitalized patients, clients or staff. Extensive disinfection protocols are followed in the isolation area and throughout the hospital. Written information regarding any infectious cases is always sent home to complete our efforts to keep you and your pet safe.

You know you are going to a hospital that considers pain control a necessity!
All of the caring veterinarians at Markham Veterinary Clinic make pain assessments on all pets at every visit. All pets undergoing surgery, including those pets having dental extractions, receive both local and systemic pain management. Continual team training of AAHA pain control standards helps us to recognize signs of early pain allowing us to treat it before it starts to affect the quality of life of your pet.You know you will receive written information about any of the pain medications dispensed for your pet!

You know you are going to a hospital that has the highest standards for surgical sterility!
AAHA standards for accreditation require protective gowns for all surgeries including masks, gowns and booties over shoes. In addition, to meet these high standards, it is prohibited to wear these scrubs in other areas of the hospital. No one may enter the surgical suite without this protective surgical attire!

You know your pet is being cared for by a veterinary team that is constantly re-assessing your pet, both when your friend is in the hospital and after he or she goes home!
AAHA accreditation requires demonstration of high levels of case communication within the hospital. At Markham Veterinary Clinic, the entire team has rounds together twice daily to discuss cases so that all team members are familiar with any pets in hospital and all “friends” that are coming in for appointments. Full team meetings are held once weekly. All pets in hospital are evaluated at least twice daily for everything from behaviour and attitude to the number of times they pee and poo! Our involvement with your pet’s case does not stop when you leave the building. Our doctors and technicians will perform follow-up calls and as many rechecks as necessary to ensure that your pet is returned to health as soon as possible.

You know that you are going to a veterinary hospital that will not sit on its laurels!
AAHA requires more frequent accreditation visits than the College of Veterinarians of Ontario (CVO). Without any deficiencies, the CVO visits hospitals every 5 years. AAHA re-evaluates your adherence to standards 2 years after the first time you are accredited and then every 3 years thereafter. In addition, AAHA is continually revising and improving the standards, keeping the bar of excellent medicine and service high.

You know that you are going to a veterinary hospital that believes in “quality of death” as much as “quality of life” for our patients.
We have always known that the end of life decision for a pet is a very difficult one and we will do everything we can to make it easier. While we have always prided ourselves on our compassionate care in this area, AAHA standards have refined and improved our ability to care for you at this difficult even more. We now have written protocols to ensure all of your wishes for your pet at the end are fulfilled.

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