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Information Technology

.. ination and comparison without deteriorating. One specimen, for example, is a dog’s head sliced vertically from the ear to the neck. This allows students to see and feel what it is like inside of a dog’s head and what a normal brain appears like. The next specimen looked similar except for minor differences in the brain. A student who studies this now knows, thanks to technology, what a to expect if a dog comes into their clinic with the same condition. This MRC also contained healthy, injured, diseased and deformed skeletons of many species.

Before these labs came about vet. students really were unable to gain such experience before they began their practice. Another lab, which contains computers, hasa station for different aspects of studies ranging from metabolism to oncology to cell physiology. On each computer was a simulation relative to the area of study it specialized in. These computers are a great resource for trying to understand systems and processes that cannot otherwise be seen such as a cancerous tumor dividing or the immune system at work. They can show, in detail, what is actually happening. During the simulation the student can stop and rewind at anytime to get another look.

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He/she can also point and click on anything pictured on the screen to get a definition or explanation of what is going on. There is always the option of seeking out a professor or textbook if anything remains unclear. When these computer programs were unavailable, there was really no way for vet students or even vets to observe these micro systems. This idexx machine tests the levels of twenty one substances in the blood such as glucose, potassium, calcium, and other elements. It also checks the number of platelets, white blood cells and red blood cells to give the doctor a better idea of what is going on inside the patient. All the doctor has to do is put a drop of blood into the Idexx and it does the rest. It even prints out a receipt looking report that contains not only the animals blood levels, but includes a column of what a normal reading is for each part that is off.

This report is species-specific. If it is normal it simply reads normal next to that element. Traditionally the doctor would have to put the blood under a microscope to determine the cell count. Finding the level of a certain element would require a lot more blood and materials resembling a chemistry kit. Not to mention a lot more time.

The IV pump machine regulates the flow of the intravenous fluids into the bloodstream of the animal. Some of them come equipped with ways to monitor the animal’s heart rate. It also alerts the vet. with a beep or ring when something is not right with the animal. This could be the animal’s heart rate or it could signify that the fluid is not getting into the animal correctly.

After school is completed and actual practice is taking place, the place in which the practice is occurring must meet the needs of veterinary medicine. Many of them have to do with information technology. Overlooking the obvious would be easy, mostly because these information technologies are highly taken for granted. A thermostat to keep a constant temperature throughout the facility is extremely important chilling or overheating a sick or wounded animal stresses it and can be devastating. Keeping the doctors and clients comfortable is important as well. A phone, preferably one with more than one line, is important for many reasons. One reason being for clients to call up, make appointments, discuss the situation of their animal and also for them to be able to check up on hospitalized animals. Another reason is for the doctors to be able to call out.

They may need to call out to gain the permission of their clients on courses of treatments, to notify them of the condition of their animals and even to tell them that ‘scruffy’ is ready to go home. Doctors also need, occasionally, to confer with other doctors or pharmacists. The fax machine is another bit of information technology that facilitates running a vet practice. In the case of the Animal Emergency Clinic of CNY, the fax machine is the primary source of contact with the share holding facilities when it comes to common patients. The medical charts of an animals are faxed to their regular veterinary facility to ensure proper follow-up care.

It is also used to send out memos about available shifts and periods of no coverage. This keeps vets from referring their clients to the AEC of CNY when no doctor is on duty. The fax is also used to order supplies and medicines. Without a fax machine most of this information would have to be mailed, lengthening the time of notification in all of the above situations. Keeping track of patients, clients and the services they received is a task that was once tedious, but now, thanks to technology, is easy, reliable and quick. In the case of the AEC of CNY, AVImark is the software employed that gets the job done. This software is a system of veterinary information management that is capable of handling a wide range of information both on the client and the patient. It makes appointments and follow-ups. It stores a file for each patient, which links it to its owner, the client.

This file holds information such as the name, address, home and work phone number and even chart number of the client. For the patient it holds the same as well as, the species, breed, weight, color, regular vet, and even the date of the last entry as well as all services received during the current and past visits. AVImark has a catalog of all of the possible services a patient may receive along with the price of that service. These services are categorized for easy findings under maintenance, treatments, and applications. And then are further broken down into sub groups such as laboratory, radiology, injections, pharmacy, etc.

Another time saving feature AVImark has to offer is estimates. These estimates save time because they contain the routine treatments and medications for cases that are seen frequently such as hit by car, urinary track infection, the Parvo. virus, and many other common situations animals are in upon entering the AEC of CNY. When an estimate is clicked on the expected treatments are brought up along with the charges for each. The estimate also includes a variance column so the vet can customize the estimate for the severity of the patient’s condition. An example of this is the standard hit by a car dog would need to be hospitalized over night receive a certain number of injections and IV bags.

A dog may come in that was hit by a car, but is not in as bad shape as would be expected. The doctor would then reduce the number of injections, IV bags and hours of hospitalization predicted for the dog. The price on the estimate would change accordingly to give a more accurate expectation to the client. After the estimate is complete it is printed to and brought out the client for review. This saves the doctor time by eliminating having to write this all out and look up the prices. Before software like this was made available for use by veterinarians all of this had to be done by hand and recorded on paper.

Storing the files of all of the patients who received care in a facility took up a lot of room and time to organize. Technology has changed greatly what a vet has to do. The above information technologies play an important role in the practice of veterinary medicine. Over the years, however, technology has changed. What has been available to veterinarians has changed as a result.

Thus technology has allowed veterinary facilities to accommodate more patients at once and accept more animals as patients in their practice. This is because the time it takes to treat an animal is shortened thanks to technology. Section IV: It is hard to single out the most important aspects of the role of information technology in the practice of veterinary medicine. Primarily because know one knows where veterinary medicine would be to today if any or all of the technology that is a part of it had not been applied to this science. Any information technology that increases the chance of a veterinarian being able to save the life of an animal would be considered important in this field.

The list of these would be never ending. The ones that facilitate vets. the most are the ones that increase the speed and accuracy of the vets. procedure. Examples of these information technologies are the idexx machine and the IV pump. Technology of veterinary medicine has already had an influence on human medicine.

An example of this are the use of vaccinations which are now used both on humans and animals. Vaccinations were originally developed for animals, but were found to be effective in humans. The use of live-virus vaccines has been used on humans since WWII. ( The use of certain information technologies in the field of human medicine are sure to have an influence in the practice of veterinary medicine. Antibiotics are another example of veterinary technology influencing human medicine. It is expected that advances in human medicine will affect veterinary medicine. The use of information technology to enable surgeons to perform surgery off site is sure to carry over to veterinary medicine.

This will have a great affect on the way doctors perform in this field. To prepare oneself for success in veterinary medicine all of the required graduate and undergraduate courses must be completed. However, the best preparation for success is exposure to the field. In order to be completely ready for the practice of veterinary medicine knowing how to use the relevant information technologies is a necessity. The best way to accomplish this is through additional courses or observation.

According to Tamela, a licensed veterinary technician who works at the AEC of CNY, watching another vet. at work, and seeing how he/she uses the technology to his/her advantage is an invaluable way to prepare for success in this field.”.


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