For Referring Vets

How it Works

Preparation
  1. Identify a suitable case and an owner that is interested in specialist surgery
  2. Call 1800 VET SURG (1800 838 787) or email info@bettervetreferrals.com.au to;
    a. Obtain an accurate estimate for your case
    b. Book a Better Veterinary Referrals visit on the scheduled surgery day.
    c. Confirm any preoperative diagnostics required. (haematology, biochemistry, radiographs, etc.)
On the Day
  1. The attending vet from your practice is welcome to attend the consultation with the specialist and pet owner on the day of surgery. This fosters a team approach to patient care and ensures all parties are on the same page regarding the nature of the surgery, aftercare, etc.
  2. Better Veterinary Referrals staff will prepare the patient for anaesthesia (catheterise, set up fluids and pre-med).
  3. One member of your hospital staff who is familiar with surgeries performed in your hospital will be required during the anaesthesia – this could be a nurse who would be responsible for assisting with patient prep and anaesthesia monitoring or a veterinarian who would like to scrub-in and assist with the procedure.
    This creates a surgical team of 3 people, (2 Better Veterinary Referrals staff and 1 member of staff from your practice)
  4. Pre-operative imaging is performed by the surgical team and the patient is clipped and prepared for surgery before being transferred to theatre.
  5. Surgery is performed and post-operative imaging is performed before returning the patient to hospital for recovery.
  6. The surgeon will telephone the owner immediately post-op with an update.
  7. Once the patient is back in hospital, Better Veterinary Referrals staff will clean the theatre.
  8. Better Veterinary Referrals will provide a detailed referral report for your medical records including surgical report and required after care. In addition, Better Veterinary Referrals will provide discharge documentation for the owner outlining the surgery performed and aftercare required once the patient is discharged.
  9. Your practice dispenses the required medications for use following discharge (typically NSAIDs +/- Antibiotics).

what we provide

what we provide
  1. Two members of staff – 1 specialist surgeon and one highly experienced nurse.
  2. Collaborative consultation with the owner and attending vet on every case.
  3. Specialist level multi-parameter anaesthetic monitoring – ECG, constant temperature monitoring, non-invasive blood pressure, SpO2, capnography.
  4. All surgical/in-theatre equipment including;
    a. Power and hand instrumentation
    b. Electrosurgery
    c. Suction
    d. Bair Hugger patient warming
  5. a. Disposable paper drapes and gowns
    b. Disposable suction tips and tubing
    c. Disposable electrocautery handpiece
    d. All implants including suture material
    e. Post-operative dressings
  6. Direction to the attending veterinarian regarding pre-operative work up, postoperative medications, exercise regimen, rechecks, post-op radiographs and complications.
  7. Discharge instructions for the owner outlining the procedure and after care.
what you provide
  1. Pre-operative consultation and work up, (haematology, biochemistry, radiographs, etc.)
  2. A clearly identified attending veterinarian to lead management of the case at your hospital.
  3. One member of staff to assist with the procedure.
  4. Access to routine perioperative medications such as;
    a. ACP and Atropine
    b. Opioids - Methadone, Morphine, IV Fentanyl and Fentanyl Patches
    c. Bupivacaine
    d. NSAIDs
    e. Antibiotics - IV Cephazolin, Oral Amoxy/Clav and/or Cephalexin
  5. Access to IV fluids including catheters, drip lines, fluid bags and a fluid pump.
  6. Access to your digital imaging system. (We will take the radiographs for you whilst we are in clinic.)
  7. Access to a standard anaesthetic machine in good repair.
  8. Access to an appropriate theatre for referral surgery
  9. Follow up consultations and radiographs for the patient.

Follow up and
Complications

Follow Up

Better Veterinary Referrals are happy to provide telephone and/or in house support during the follow up period if the attending veterinarian is concerned about the recovery at all.

Typical follow up care for a routine case would include:

  1. 4-day post op check-up. Performed by the attending veterinarian at your practice.
  2. 14-day post op check-up and suture/staple removal by Better Veterinary Referrals in your practice.
  3. 8-week follow up radiographs for orthopaedic cases, performed in your practice. Radiographs sent to Better Veterinary Referrals for assessment.
What if there is a Complication?

Unfortunately, complications are an unavoidable aspect of surgery. Fortunately, they are rare (<5%) and in the vast majority of cases they are resolvable.

Better Veterinary Referrals are committed to providing the exceptional care you expect of your own staff. Should a complication occur, or be suspected, Better Veterinary Referrals will provide telephone and/or in-house assistance to direct the investigation and treatment of the problem. There is no charge to your practice for the specialist post-operative support provided.

Should a revision surgery be recommended, Better Veterinary Referrals will perform the surgery in your practice on a cost recovery basis, i.e. simply replacement of consumables used in the surgery but no charge for surgical time or attendance.

We feel that this approach provides assurance for both the pet owner and referring veterinarian that, should a complication occur, we will do all in our power to provide the outcome that was initially hoped for. When dealing with complications our focus is always on the patient’s outcome.

Cancellation Policy

There is no charge for cancellation of an appointment when at least 4 hours notice is given. Cancellations within 4 hours of the scheduled appointment will incur a cancellation fee.