VETERINARY ECONOMICS, Nov 1, 2005 - Veterinary Economics
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VETERINARY ECONOMICS, Nov 1, 2005
Checking in
The thrill of the makeover
By Marnette Denell Falley
We tried for years to get you all to share your hospital makeover projects—the progress you made with a weekend of work and a bucket of paint. But to no avail.
Cover Story
Rev up your revenue
By Jennette Rosier Lawson , Denise Tumblin, CPA
Raising fees isn't the only way to fuel revenue growth. Use these strategies to customize your revenue plan.
Vetcetera
Life flights lift animals to safety
In the wake of this year's hurricanes, many went to extraordinary measures to transport pets so that overcrowded shelters in the Gulf Coast could take in more animals. Here are two examples:
Dolphins rescued
In Jackson, Miss., marine biologists rescued eight trained dolphins that were swept to sea by Hurricane Katrina, according to an article on CNN.com. Biologists located the dolphins by performing aerial surveys, and monitored and fed them by boat until they could be rescued. Four of the dolphins had moved on to the Mississippi Sound, but were later reunited with their pool mates. "I think it's been good news for a lot of people who've had a lot of bad news lately," said Connie Barclay, spokeswoman for the National Marine Fisheries Services.
Coming together to help
Hurricane Rita's single-digit death toll is overshadowed by more than 1,100 lives claimed by Hurricane Katrina three weeks earlier. Of course, livestock, pets, and wildlife also suffered tremendous devastation in the wrath of the hurricanes. Shelters opened their doors and filled their corridors. And when the shelters near the affected area were full, shelters all over the country welcomed animals that were lost, injured, or left.
Practice Management Q&A
Promised ownership
By Cynthia Wutchiett, CPA
A veterinarian I don't know that well offered me an opportunity to work for a clinic she's purchasing, promising that if we're compatible, she'll allow me to buy in. How do I formalize our agreement?
Expected revenue growth
By Roger Cummings, CVPM
I'm considering building a facility. What average revenue growth can owners expect five and 10 years after building, adding onto, or remodeling a practice?
Specialist contracts
By James F. Wilson, DVM
How are contracts for specialists different from contracts for generalists?
Cash for retirement
By Fritz Wood, CPA, CFP
How do I know how much I need to save for retirement?
Practice Tips
Maintaining a safe practice
By Stephanie Slahor, Ph.D., JD
Every member of your practice team can help increase security.
A relaxing reward
The Veterinary Hospital in Eugene, Ore., sets daily production goals. When the hospital achieves the daily goal five times, they hire a massage therapist to come into the hospital and give everyone a professional pat on the back.
The upscale market is bigger than you think
By Bob Levoy
Reluctant to purchase high-tech equipment because you're concerned clients can't afford costly diagnostic tests? You may be right. But consider the following facts from the recent article "Putting on the Dog" from www.businessweek.com:
Talking Points
7 ways to be more effective in the exam room
By Craig Woloshyn, DVM
There's never enough time in your day—so make every moment in the exam room count. And remember, even small improvements in exam-room procedures can dramatically improve your whole team's efficiency.
Click & Copy
Client satisfaction survey
Use this sample as a starting point to develop your own survey.
Survey clients to learn where you can improve
Here's the best way to learn whether you're making the grade on service: Ask. Consider these issues, then visit www.vetecon.com and click on "Forms" to download the sample client survey.
Legal Ease
Business ethics
By Robert Moment
Solid business ethics can help you establish a profitable, successful practice. And your clients will see your good side, too. Here are seven principles of admirable business ethics:
Practicing over state lines
By Gregory Dennis
Many veterinarians donated their time and expertise after hurricanes Katrina and Rita. You, too, may have considered volunteering.
Crawford resigns from FDA
Lester Crawford, DVM, Ph.D., who was the highest-ranking veterinarian serving in public office, has resigned as commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration.
How can I protect my nonveterinarian significant other's investments in the practice-both monetary and sweat equity- in the case of my death?
By Karl Salzsieder, DVM, JD
Q: How can I protect my nonveterinarian significant other's investments in the practice—both monetary and sweat equity—in the case of my death?
Giving someone the axe ... the right way
By Kerry Richard, JD
Learn the potential legal ramifications of terminating an employee.
Hot Button
Specialty medicine doesn't have to lead to a fight over cases
By Ben Colmery III, DVM, Dipl. AVDC
In the new millennium, everyone can win by joining forces to fight for patients' best interests.
Hospital Design
Make your unsightly exam room unbelievable
By Elizabeth Trotta
Do you have an exam room that compromises your dignity? Do clients gawk and children giggle when they step into Room Three? You can remodel this terror of a room without creating chaos. Just ask the team at Great Neck Veterinary Clinic, Virginia Beach, Va., winner of the 2005 Veterinary Economics Ugly Exam Room Contest, sponsored by Veterinary Economics, BDA Architecture, Shor-Line Cabinet Co., and InPro Corp. Great Neck Veterinary Clinic realized it had a problem—and fixed it.
Managing Smart
The devil's in the details
By Mark Opperman, CVPM
Is your practice losing ground compared to its past performance? If so, it's not necessarily cause for panic. Often you can get back on track by making some simple changes. To get started, dot the i's and cross the t's in these five areas:
Personnel Solutions
Setting the sail for success
By Katherine Bontrager
As the captain of your practice, it's your job to set the course and take advantage of the wind, urging the ship toward your destination. But you can't maneuver this behemoth alone. You need a crew. When they're truly onboard, your team members will have one eye on the horizon and another peeled for potential problems, and they'll help keep the practice on course.

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