Texas seeks to identify veterinary shortage areas for inclusion in loan repayment program


Commission seeks nominations for areas in need of food animal medicine, rural private practice or public practice.

The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) is asking for nominations to identify areas in the state lacking veterinarians to work in the areas of food animal medicine, rural private practice or public practice. The TAHC is accepting nominations of areas in need until 5 p.m. Feb. 15 when they will be forwarded to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for inclusion in the national Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program. The program pays up to $25,000 per year for three years for eligible veterinarians who will service in a designated shortage area.

Three veterinarians entered into loan repayment agreements with USDA to practice in Texas. One designated area covered Zapata and Starr counties in South Texas; one covered Garza, Borden, Lynn and Crosby counties in an area southeast of Lubbock; and the other covered King, Cottle, Foard, Knox, Stonewall and Dickens counties in North Texas.

To nominate an area of Texas for the federal loan repayment program, go to the TAHC website (www.tahc.state.tx.us/vets/TexasVMLRP_ShortageNominationForm2013.pdf) to complete the nomination form and forward to comments@tahc.state.tx.us or fax to 512-719-0719, attention Dr. Holly Hughes-Garza. Questions can be directed to Dr. Hughes-Garza at 512-719-0718 or comments@tahc.state.tx.us.

A map of the previously designated shortage areas from 2012 can be viewed on the USDA website (www.csrees.usda.gov/nea/animals/in_focus/vmlrp_12/vmlrp_shortage_situation_texas.html).

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