Dr. Ashley Rossman and Dr. Gary Stuer attended the annual House of Delegate meeting in Chicago on July 29th and 30th. In addition to the many resolutions that were discussed and voted on, a new President Elect was chosen. Two outstanding candidates spoke about their vision for the future of the AVMA. The HOD chose Dr. Lori Teller to serve as the 2021-2022 President Elect. In addition, Dr. Sam Miller of Texas was chosen to serve as the District 8 director and Dr. Richard Sullivan as the District 10 director. Dr. Jose Arce is now the current President of the AVMA. Elections to the AVMA councils and the House Advisory Committee (HAC) were also held during the meeting.
The House of Delegates was updated on the AVMA’s diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives. The Board of Directors is expected to approve a full diversity, equity, and inclusion framework plan in September. Part of that framework includes the following:
- Creating opportunities for more diverse members to participate in AVMA volunteer leadership. This includes methods for removing barriers to leadership positions as well as educational efforts on volunteering with the AVMA and other veterinary associations.
- Expanding DEI content in AVMA programming and events and exploring Spanish language online education for veterinarians.
- Continuing to build on collaboration with strategic partners, emphasizing DEI as a priority.
- Integrating DEI concepts as part of training for AVMA volunteers.
- Improving collection of member and student information.
- Considering DEI components and impact when developing and updating policy and resources.
- Assessing AVMA’s internal DEI practices and objectives against DEI best practices.
During the meeting, delegates consider two issues as part of the Veterinary Information Forum (VIF). The first was a discussion about how delegates can best communicate AVMA Member Value to our constituents. A resolution was approved to form a working group to explore and define the role of delegates in conveying member benefits, The second related to economic dynamics in the U.S. A resolution was passed stating that “ The AVMA recognizes the economic, staffing, and morale challenges that currently exist in the U.S. veterinary workforce. Your AVMA is working on these complex problems and will be delivering information to aid in your understanding of these issues, including JAVMA articles going forward, as well as providing tools to assist you, such as convening the AVMA Business and Economic Forum in the fall of 2021 with a focus on these issues.”
The following policy actions were taken by the House of Delegates:
- Resolution 8 – Shutdown Methods as Not Recommended. The HOD voted to refer the resolution to the AVMA Board of Directors for consideration by the AVMA Panel on Depopulation.
- Resolution 9 – Rules for Officer Election. The HOD voted to adopt the resolution.
- Resolution 10 – Policy on Compounding. The HOD voted to refer the resolution to the AVMA Board of Directors for further clarification by the AVMA Council on Biological and Therapeutic Agents (COBTA).
- Resolution 11 – Revised Policy on Use of Random Source Dogs and Cats for Research, Testing, and Education. The HOD voted to adopt the resolution.
- Resolution 12 – Revised Policy on Veterinary Foresight and Expertise in Antimicrobial Discussions. The HOD voted to adopt the resolution.
- Resolution 13 – Revised Policy on Notification to the Veterinarian of Volatile Residues in Foods of Animal Origin. The HOD voted to adopt the resolution.
- Resolution 14 – Policy on Use of Prescription Drugs in Veterinary Medicine. The HOD voted to refer the resolution to the AVMA Board of Directors for referral to the AVMA Council on Biological and Therapeutic Agents for further clarification.
The HOD recognized retiring members of the House for their dedicated service. In addition, the HOD recognized Dr. George Bishop, District 10 representative on the Board of Directors as well as Dr. John Howe, for completing his term as immediate Past President.
Dr. Rossman and Dr. Stuer welcome input and questions from AHVMA members. Our role is to be a voice of the AHVMA in the House of Delegates as well as be a resource for our members.
Dr. Gary Stuer, AHVMA Delegate
Dr. Ashley Rossman, AHVMA Alternate Delegate