Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital’s Blog
Why the Wait? The COVID Edition
If you have been to visit us or have needed our assistance at Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital during the pandemic, you have probably noticed things are a bit different. Clients aren’t coming in the building, it is taking so much longer to get an appointment, and we probably aren’t getting back to you as quickly as we were previously.
If you are wondering why this is all happening, we can assure you that it isn’t because we care less or even just isolated to our veterinary hospital. Across the country, the veterinary industry is experiencing some dramatic challenges and changes. We hope that a little peek inside the veterinary clinic during COVID will help you to understand.
COVID Changes How We Operate
Within the hospital itself, our staff has had to adjust the way we have been used to doing things. We didn’t get to be so efficient overnight, and the challenges that COVID has brought to the clinic has rocked everything we thought we knew about veterinary medicine.
When operating during COVID, we need to:
- Allow more time for curbside and socially distanced appointments than we needed to for face-to-face appointments
- Utilize more staff members to obtain information and bring pets into and out of the building
- Take extra precautions and steps to clean and disinfect to keep our clients and staff safe
- Be on the phone more than ever to make appointments, process payments, discuss findings and treatment plans, check patients in and out, discuss test results, and prescribe medications
This means that we have to spend more time to achieve the same quality of care and that we often have less appointments available. This can make it challenging to accommodate everyone and still do a good job.
Add to that the fact that our staff members need to take care of themselves. Personal illness, illness in the family, quarantine restrictions, and loss of child care can leave our building short of help at times, creating yet another hurdle we strive, as an employer, to accommodate for our Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital family.
COVID Changes Pet Ownership
Besides the pandemic bringing operational challenges to our hospital, COVID has created new, unprecedented dynamics in the pet industry in general.
With people spending more time at home than ever before and spending less money on things like eating out and going on trips, we have definitely seen some changes. Over the last year there has been:
- A huge increase in the number of newly adopted pets
- A strengthening in many of the bonds between pets and their people
- An increase in people noticing problems in their pets that may have gone undetected previously
- More opportunities for accidental pet poisonings
- An increase in stress-related pet problems
- More behavioral issues and separation anxiety problems as new pets aren’t as well socialized and all pets adjust to scheduling changes
- More pet injuries as people interact and play more with their furry family
- A need to catch up on care postponed during restrictions, lockdowns, and quarantines
Much of this change has added to the operational challenges that we are already facing.
COVID has left veterinary practices across the country scrambling to keep up with the increased need for care while balancing that with the need for more time to do the job right, staffing shortages, and illness. It is no easy task.
We ask that you help us to be able to continue to provide your pets with quality care by honoring the guidelines and procedures we have in place (check our website and social media for updates) and allowing ample time for us to respond to you. Scheduling routine appointments well in advance is also helpful.
We promise that we are doing our best to continue to provide the quality care you have come to expect from us. We are in this together, and we hope that you will provide us and other veterinary hospitals with some care and consideration as we navigate COVID together.