CVMA | Documents | NEWS RELEASE: CVMA Explores Pros, Cons, and Implications of Telehealth and Animal Welfare

NEWS RELEASE: CVMA Explores Pros, Cons, and Implications of Telehealth and Animal Welfare

July 17, 2019


Canadian Veterinary Medical Association Explores Pros, Cons, and Implications of Telehealth and Animal Welfare

Toronto, Ont. – The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) explored the issues and challenges pertaining to telehealth and animal welfare in veterinary medicine at its Global Issues Forum that took place on July 16 during the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSVA)/CVMA Congress in Toronto, Ont.

“It is essential that veterinary medicine, in line with human medicine, explore the positive and negative implications of telemedicine in everyday and specialized practice,” says Dr. Terri Chotowetz, 2018-19 CVMA President. “With the increased demand for up-to-date, timely, and highly specialized care for animals, it stands to reason that the veterinary medical community look to telemedicine to meet these needs and provide the best quality care we can for our patients.” 

The CVMA Global Issues Forum: Telehealth and Animal Welfare – Pros, Cons and Implications for Veterinary Patients heard from three veterinarians in the afternoon session who gave different perspectives on the topic. 

  • Dr. Heather Bacon, Veterinary Welfare Education and Outreach manager at the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education at the University of Edinburgh, outlined the UK experience of telemedicine, including areas of concern for the profession and the veterinary ethical and animal welfare implications.
  • Jan Robinson, Registrar and Chief Executive Officer of the College of Veterinarians of Ontario, shared the history, expectations, and continuing challenges in relation to practice risks and necessary safeguards in this delivery space from a regulatory perspective.
  • And, Dr. Lori Teller of the Texas A & M University, focused on how some veterinarians in small animal and food animal practices in the U.S. incorporate telehealth to deliver veterinary medical services, American Veterinary Medical Association resources for veterinarians interested in integrating virtual care in their practices, and the latest legislative and regulatory guidance in this area.

The WSAVA/CVMA Congress gathered over 2,000 veterinary professionals from around the world from July 16 to 19, 2019 to attend Canada’s only national multi-species Convention. 

Additional events included the CVMA Summit which explored The Gold Standard of Animal Welfare – Positive and Negative Impact on Animals and Veterinarians, the announcement of the new CVMA President, and the CVMA awards ceremony recognizing individuals and groups for their outstanding contribution to veterinary medicine.

The Congress featured over 100 highly rated national and international speakers addressing topics ranging from companion animal, ruminant, equine, bovine, animal welfare, and more. 

The CVMA is the national and international voice for over 12,500 veterinarians in Canada. The Congress was held in partnership with the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA).

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The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) is the national and international voice for Canada’s veterinarians, providing leadership and advocacy for veterinary medicine. Visit to learn more about CVMA.

Lori Tarbett, Canadian Veterinary Medical Association
613-236-1162 ext. 128 (office)
613-697-0762 (cell)