Veterinary hospitals are evaluated on approximately 900 standards of veterinary excellence in order to become accredited. AAHA-accredited hospitals are recognized among the finest in the industry, and are consistently at the forefront of advanced veterinary medicine.
AAHA standards address patient care and pain management, surgery, pharmacy, laboratory, exam facilities, medical records, cleanliness, emergency services, dental care, diagnostic imaging, anesthesiology and continuing education. To maintain accredited status, hospitals undergo comprehensive on-site evaluation every thee years.
AAHA-Accredited Practice of the Year 2014
Prescott Animal Hospital has been accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) since 1996. Veterinary hospitals are not required to be accredited, unlike human hospitals, and it is voluntary for a hospital to pursue accreditation.
In March of 2014, Prescott Animal Hospital received the AAHA-Accredited Practice of the Year award in Nashville at the annual AAHA conference. The AAHA award committee evaluates each team on their most recent accreditation score, mission and vision, team composition, continuing education and training, community involvement and much more. AAHA members are known for excellence, rendering a highly competitive Practice of the Year award.
“AAHA believes that the success of a veterinary practice depends on the entire team working together to provide excellent care for pets and their people,” Mike Cavanaugh, D.V.M., AAHA executive officer said. “Prescott Animal Hospital is clearly dedicated to giving its clients and their pets the very best service.”
“To put this award in perspective, there are approximately 30,000 animal hospitals in the United States and Canada. Of those hospitals, only 3,500 hold themselves to the higher AAHA accreditation standards.”
-Steven H. Dow, DVM, MS
Prescott Animal Hospital
Why is AAHA accreditation important to PAH?
As pet owners are becoming more and more educated, they are learning to choose a medical facility for their pets wisely. Pets are family and owners like to compare “apples to apples”, so to speak, when choosing medical care and the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) provides the yardstick in which to evaluate veterinary hospitals. AAHA has the same pride that Prescott Animal Hospital does in providing outstanding client service and patient care and being able to put the AAHA accredited next to our name has been exceptionally rewarding. There are several reasons why AAHA accreditation is a valuable tool for our practice.
First, AAHA gives clients confidence that all of our associate veterinarians hold to the highest medical standards. They can be assured of excellent patient care at every turn. In addition, our clients are provided the opportunity to receive the AAHA e-newsletter, PetsMatter, filled with helpful information, and they may also visit the AAHA web site, healthypet.com, to research topics of interest. Receiving a vote of confidence from clients is imperative for our practice to maintain and continue to acquire a strong client base and to obtain word-of-mouth referrals from satisfied clients.
Another reason of the importance of AAHA accreditation is team education and the confidence our veterinary team has in their employer. It takes every team member to provide the best patient care. Our team can be confident in every medical decision knowing that with an AAHA accreditation we are serious about medical care standards. AAHA provides a comprehensive toolbox for veterinary hospitals to continually improve their knowledge. Being AAHA accredited, our team may attend continuing education seminars, classes and conferences to sharpen and expand their skills. We also have access to medical journals and subscriptions, such as Trends, the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association, and an email newsletter.
Next, AAHA affords business benefits to veterinary practices such as product purchasing programs, which PAH utilizes. AAHA also assists businesses in finding qualified candidates through their extensive network. Through AAHA, PAH has an opportunity to choose from prospective employees who best fit our practice.
Finally, AAHA believes strongly in community involvement and PAH takes great pride in our local and veterinary community. AAHA encourages hospitals to participate in community events and provides tools, such as brochures, to help the hospitals promote AAHA standards. Everything from social media and information web sites to television and print advertising promotes a higher standard of care to the general public and prospective clients.
AAHA is a powerful partner for our practice in the quest for the best patient care and excellence in medicine. AAHA helps provide our hospital with a multi-modal approach to provide superior medical care and constantly improve our methods and practices.
By: Debbie Ivan
Prescott Animal Hospital – 2014