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Veterinary Workforce Shortage – Time for Action

December 11, 2021

During a recent Council meeting, the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) committed to investing $200,000 over the next 12 months to address the veterinary workforce shortage in Canada. As one of the initial steps, the CVMA will invite provincial veterinary medical associations, regulatory bodies, deans, veterinary technicians/technologists, representatives from federal and provincial governments (final list to follow) to a Veterinary Workforce Congress with the objective of identifying and coordinating plans and actions on addressing the workforce shortage. The Congress is being planned for May 2022, with an intent to schedule periodical follow-up meetings to ensure progress. The CVMA believes the veterinary workforce shortage is one of the primary challenges facing our profession today, and believes we need a national, focused, collaborative effort to make a difference across the country. Please stay tuned.

As of January 1, 2022, the CVMA will employ a full-time Project Manager, for at least one year, to coordinate workforce initiatives. Furthermore, the CVMA:

  • Is in the process of appointing a Workforce Advisory Group;
  • will, in conjunction with the July 2022 CVMA Convention, offer a Summit on “Time for a Veterinary Workforce Paradigm Shift”;
  • will offer a series of webinars on recruitment and retention on February 2, 9, 16, 2022.

The above is a small part of a bigger plan, based on the 2020 CVMA Workforce Study, which will be fleshed out and validated during the upcoming Congress.

The CVMA looks forward to supporting and working with stakeholders across the country as we address challenges the workforce shortage poses to delivery of veterinary services, including impacts on animal health and welfare, as well as veterinary team wellness.