Internal Medicine Veterinary Technician

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Department: Specialty and Emergency Job Status: Full Time

Education: College (AS/BS/BA) Experience: 2+ years previous ER and/or specialty

3+ years previous veterinary technician experience.

Hourly Pay Rate: $20.00 -$27.50 DOE

JOB SUMMARY

The Internal Medicine specialty veterinary technician has many important responsibilities and plays many roles within the hospital in the specialty services. They also apply their professional skills in anesthesia, emergency, laboratory testing, patient nursing, and client education.

The technician is routinely entrusted with patient assessments/triage, anesthesia, procedures, drug doses, and treatments. The technician will be responsible for patient care, patient follow-up, and maintenance of Internal Medicine patient records. They will be expected to maintain regular client follow up, maintain timely patient reminders (automated emails and postcards), and answer owner and referring veterinarian-related questions. The technician must be a detail-oriented person who can make good decisions, respond quickly and calmly to crises, and maintain high standards of patient care. The technician will need to maintain clear and accurate written communications with the doctors, other hospital personnel, and clients to ensure that patients receive the care that they need.

The technician should enjoy working with diverse people and animals and be friendly and flexible in the face of varying expectations from clients and co-workers. The technician must share a firm belief in the quality of care we provide and communicate this sense of assurance to clients. It is important to know and understand our services and recommendations and be able to clearly convey the value of the services to the clients. Excellent client communication skills and a commitment to outstanding client service are essential.

Job duties and responsibilities:

General Knowledge

• Know the range of services the practice provides and the species it treats.

• Be familiar with breeds and breed predisposition to disease

• Follow OSHA standards. Be able to find Material Safety Data Sheets quickly.

• Know and use standard medical and business abbreviations.

• Use proper medical terminology when speaking and writing.

• Competently speak and write the English language legibly.

• Computer knowledge for maintenance of our company data base, generation of patient medical records and reports

• Nursing skills for daily management of in-hospital patients

• Knowledge of commonly used CV drugs, side effects, and main indications

General Tasks

• Always be in position and prepared to work by the start of each scheduled shift.

• Learned proficiency of all software and database systems.

• Maintain a professional, friendly demeanor while on the job.

• Promote a positive attitude among staff.

• Handle stress and pressure with poise and tact.

• Be willing and available to stay late or through breaks, when needed, to assist with emergency or critical-care patients.

• Show respect for clients, team members, and animals (alive or deceased) at all times.

• Have the physical strength and ability to stand for an entire shift when needed and be able to lift pets and objects weighing up to 40 pounds without assistance. Assist in lifting patients weighing more than 40 pounds.

• Demonstrates and/or has willingness to train to obtain a full working knowledge of EzyVet and Instinct practice software.

• Be a leader to other technicians and tech assistants demonstrating strong training and technical skills.

Exam-Room Tasks

• Possess enough strength and assertiveness to effectively restrain patients and ensure the safety of clients and personnel.

• Measure and record each patient’s weight, temperature, pulse rate, and respiratory rate.

• Triage patients appropriately

• Answer questions and educate clients

• Using aseptic procedures, draw up injections that doctors will administer.

• Dispose of used needles and syringes and other sharp objects as set forth by the practice’s policy and OSHA standards.

• Assist with routine exam-room procedures, such as venipunctures, fine-needle aspirates, corneal stains, and ear treatments.

• Record doctors’ findings during medical examinations as needed.

Basic Patient-Care Tasks

• Prioritize tasks to maximize clients’ satisfaction and patients’ health.

• Maximize patients’ comfort with a gentle and reassuring manner. Understand that actions that would constitute animal cruelty under state or local laws or the practice’s policies will be grounds for immediate reprimand and/or termination.

• Monitor patients’ behaviors and note potentially aggressive behaviors. Use caution when handling aggressive or potentially aggressive pets. Request assistance when needed.

• Assess hospitalized patients’ temperatures, pulse rates, respiratory rates, and respiratory qualities, and record data in appropriate records, as requested by doctors.

• Prior to discharge, remove patients’ catheters, clean patients so that no body fluids are detectable, and bathe and/or groom patients prior to transferring them to clients.

Patient-Treatment Tasks

• Understand the mechanics and application of basic standards of asepsis.

• Maintain IV catheters so fluids flow freely; flush and clean as needed.

• Administer IV, IM, SQ, and oral medications and note in charts.

• Assist in the application of wound dressings and treatments.

• Monitor telemetry and perform 6 lead ECG

Technical/Specialty Tasks:

General Technical Tasks

• Perform venipunctures and artery puncture using patients’ cephalic, saphenous, and jugular in a manner that minimizes trauma to patients and injury to veins and allows you to successfully obtain a non-hemolyzed sample.

• Place sampling catheter and introducer catheter

• Understand the paperwork and procedures of outside laboratories used by the practice.

• Perform routine ELISA tests, such as heartworm and feline viral tests. Set up and read urine specific gravities, hemocrits, and total protein tests.

• Operate and maintain and train staff on use of Snyder oxygen cage

Emergency-Care Tasks

• Provide basic life support, including CPR, airway maintenance, and oxygen therapy.

• Control bleeding using pressure bandages and tourniquets.

• Recognize common arrhythmias including SVT, VPCs, V-tach, sinus arrhythmia, sinus arrest and various forms of AV block

• Accurately measure Doppler blood pressure

Surgical-Assistance Tasks

• Know the names of instruments and where they are stored.

• Prepare the surgery suite(s) for incoming patients.

• Bring surgical patients to the surgical prep area. Ensure that you have the correct patients by checking cage cards, affixed identifications, and patients’ markings and records.

• Set up and operate fluoroscopy

• Check surgery schedules and patients’ records to determine procedures to be performed.

• Assist Veterinarians in administering preoperative medications.

• Under the direction of doctors, prepare patients for surgery. Clip surgical fields with straight margins. Minimize tissue trauma. Properly scrub and prepare surgical fields.
Maintain clean fields when moving patients.

• Properly position and align patients for surgery.

• Ability to calibrate transducers to measure intracardiac and intravascular pressures

• Monitor patients during surgery for depth of anesthesia, color, temperature, respiratory rate, and heart rate. Alert doctors to changes in condition.

• Monitor patients’ recovery. Protect patients from aspiration and hypothermia.
Deflate cuffs and remove endotracheal tubes as soon as gag reflexes return.

• During surgical procedures, serve as the ‘lead’ to the surgeon’s support staff.

Surgical Cleaning Tasks

• Clean operating rooms and equipment after use.

• Clean floors and counters in surgical prep and recovery areas, treatment rooms, and wards after use and as needed.

• Wash, sterilize, and store endotracheal tubes using techniques that prevent the spread of disease.

• Clean surgical instruments by hand and/or ultrasonic cleaner.

• Operate and maintain the autoclave.

• Pack and autoclave instruments. Using lists of instruments or photos as guides, ensure that packs contain the proper numbers and types of instruments and that they are labeled with dates and types of packs. Apply pressure and temperature sterilization tape and/or monitors and verify effectiveness after autoclaving.

• Instruct other technicians and tech assistants on the proper organization and maintenance of surgical space and equipment.

Radiology Tasks

• Restraint and positioning of patients for radiographic procedures.

• Maintain up to date telemedicine records using Asteris software

• Send echocardiography and radiology images to referring veterinarians when requested using Asteris software

• Strive to position animals for optimum viewing of the body parts being radiographed.

• Obtain feedback on radiograph quality when sending for review.