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Role of Diplomates in Continuing Education

During the fall of 2012 all Diplomates were asked to respond to a survey exploring the “Role of Diplomates in Continuing Education.” Forty percent of the members responded with nearly a 50/50 split of those in favor and against teaching advanced surgery to general practicing veterinarians. Survey results were reported in an April 2013 CTTP article. An ACVS position statement was requested by some of the members. The Board of Regents deliberated the advisability of developing such a statement.

There are very strong opinions on both sides of the issues. Some feel it is better for the animal to have surgery performed by a general practitioner than receiving no surgery. Others feel this is a disservice to the animal as they may suffer through complications that may result if a non-surgeon performs the procedure. Some felt that if we recommend restricting topics or content presented at continuing education conferences, then we would also need to restrict what was published in textbooks and the readership of journals. Therefore, rather than adopting a position statement on continuing education the Board elected to reiterate the mission statement that was adopted in June of 2012: “ACVS board certified veterinary surgeons provide the highest quality of surgical care for all animals” and asks that all Diplomates live up to this motto.

Cheryl S. Hedlund
ACVS President
Comments:  chedlund@iastate.edu