– Job Description –
Veterinary Technician Assistant

JOB SUMMARY

Under the direction of the Technical Supervisor, assist veterinarians with patient care and treatment, monitor hospitalized pets, maintain inventory, prepare prescriptions, perform routine in-house lab work, educate clients regarding veterinary care and procedures and assist with surgical procedures.

SPECIFIC DUTIES

Client Communication

Communicate with clients regarding the medical status of their pet. Provide accurate information to clients concerning hospital policies and procedures, etc.

• Instruct clients as to what they should do prior to bringing their pets in for procedures, how to care for their pets after discharge from the hospital, how to administer medications, etc.

• Demonstrate warmth, courtesy and professionalism in all interactions with clients.

Animal Handling

• Restrain animals in a safe, efficient and compassionate manner during examinations and procedures.

• Assist with moving animals throughout the hospital. Cage and remove animals as needed.

• Exercise compassion and care in all interactions with patients. Know how to properly handle difficult or contentious animals.

Assist Veterinarians / Exam Room Protocol

• Follow established procedures in order to assist veterinarians with examinations and facilitate the flow of clients and patients through the out-patient clinic. Consult with veterinarians on a daily basis to plan each day’s activities. Keep doctors apprised of potential problems, discussions with clients, etc.

• Review medical records and notes made by the admitting receptionist in order to discern the nature of the visit and any tests or procedures that may be needed.

• Greet clients and escort them and their pets into an exam room. Place the patient on the exam table and prepare for the doctor to enter the room. Obtain basic information (weight, temperature, etc) on the pet.

• Discuss with the client the reason for the visit (chief complaint), any symptoms or problems being experienced, and any procedures that may need to be done (i.e. vaccinations, fecal or heartworm tests, etc). Utilize any applicable client educational pieces to ensure that all medical needs are covered.

• Obtain any lab samples that may be needed from the pet. Utilize a fecal loop when necessary. Anticipate and prepare any medications or vaccines the doctor will need to treat the patient.

• Notify the veterinarian when patients in the exam room are ready to be seen. Advise the veterinarian of the information already known such as the nature of the visit, preventive procedures due, tests that are to be run, etc. Assist the veterinarian within the exam room by restraining the animal, preparing forms, obtaining instruments, etc. Remain in the exam room until excused by the doctor.

• Perform any lab work that may be needed or make sure that lab work is performed by another team member while the patient is still in the exam room.

• Ensure all procedures rendered during the visit are documented for proper billing. Ensure that all vaccinations, procedures, notes, etc have been documented in the medical record.

• Escort the client and patient to the front desk and give the medical record and patient visit form to the receptionist for client receipting. Prepare the exam room for the next visit.

Laboratory Procedures and Radiographs

• Accurately perform routine in-house laboratory procedures. Appropriately prepare and handle specimens.

• Prepare specimens for outside laboratory. Obtain results from the lab over the phone, by computer or fax, if necessary.

• Monitor lab supplies and notify Technical Supervisor of any items running low.

• Take, develop and maintain radiographs following proper safety procedures.

Veterinary Procedures

• Perform routine suture removals, nail trims, and weight checks. Apply bandages and splints under the direction of the attending veterinarian.

• Sterilize instruments.

• Prep patients for procedures.

• Give injections, as directed by veterinarian - intravenous, intramuscular and subcutaneous.

• Examine patients for fleas, skin problems, and other obvious problems.

Preparing Medications

• Accurately dispense prescription medications as directed by veterinarian. Prepare prescription labels and appropriately package medications.

• Document controlled drug logs anytime a controlled drug is used.

• Ensure that medications are added to the patient’s record and appropriately charged to the client.

Safety

• Follow OSHA guidelines concerning safety and handling of hazardous materials.

• Follow established hospital safety guidelines regarding radiographs, controlled drugs, animal handling, etc.

Physical Plant Maintenance

• Clean and straighten exam rooms, treatment and lab areas. Restock exam rooms with supplies as needed. Assist other staff members to keep the public areas of the practice clean and well maintained.

• Clean and maintain all medical equipment as required.

Hospitalized Patient Care

• Assist with morning rotations of animals in kennel as needed. Ensure that all animals receive needed medication. Treat routine surgical patients from the previous day. Maintain any treatments requested by the doctor and document all services rendered.

• Organize daily patient status lists for front office staff and update as needed. Communicate with hospital attendants regarding the needs of patients. Review cases in the hospital with other technical staff before shift changes.

Veterinary Knowledge

• Exercise appropriate veterinary medical knowledge. Utilize in-house educational materials and continuing education provided by the hospital.

• Exercise knowledge of the hospital’s programs, products, and services.

• Maintain state-required continuing education requirements.

Minimum Qualifications 

Knowledge of the procedures used for receiving, treating, and scheduling patients, for ordering medical supplies, and requesting laboratory tests.

Knowledge of the use, care, and storage of veterinary instruments, materials, and equipment.

Knowledge of sterilization techniques to sterilize various instruments and materials.

Knowledge of the instruments, materials, and standardized procedures used in the full variety of treatments to make preparations and provide “tableside” assistance.

Education: Equivalent to completion of 12th grade

Desirable Qualifications

Knowledge of: Basic pharmacology; or Veterinary Technology

Experience: Previous experience in a veterinary hospital or related medical field

PHYSICAL EFFORT

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the primary functions of this job. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to bend, stand, stoop, walk, sit, talk, and listen; may be required to walk or stand for long periods of time; will use hands to manipulate, handle, or feel; will reach with hands and arms. The employee is often required to lift and carry animals or materials weighing fifty pounds or more; handle dogs weighing up to 250 lbs.

WORK ENVIRONMENT

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is exposed to hazards associated with aggressive patients; hazards associated with infected animals and controlled substances; exposure to unpleasant odors and noises; exposure to bites, scratches and animal wastes; possible exposure to contagious diseases and will be exposed to radiation through the taking of radiographs.

 

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Santa Monica Pet Medical Center

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