Letter to dvm360: The solution to low-cost clinics lies within the profession

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It would benefit the industry for veterinarians to own the low cost options.

Who caused the proliferation of low-cost spay-neuter clinics owned by charitable 501(c)3 organizations? We did.

Some veterinarians were already performing low-cost spays and neuters as well as as vaccination and basic healthcare clinics. The problem they encountered was that the state veterinary boards would try to shut them down. Such veterinarians could count on fines, license restrictions, probation and other harassment from their state board.This created a shortage of low-cost providers that the low-income clients needed.

So the profession began ignoring low-income clients. The fact that we were not serving this group opened the door to charitable organizations. If veterinarians weren't going to help the underserved, then humane societies and rescue groups would fill the need. And today we see a proliferation of low-cost providers of veterinary services.

The state veterinary boards started this problem. They can stop it by ending the harassment of veterinarians who want to provide low-cost services. Low-cost clinics owned by veterinarians will charge higher prices then the 501(c)3 groups and at the same time outcompete them for business.

Gerald Dobesh, DVM

Omaha, Nebraska

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