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Veterinary Hospital Residencies Lead to Board Certifications

December 2, 2014

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Dr. Camilla Scott works with the veterinary hospital’s Equine Reproduction Service as part of her residency in Comparative Theriogenology.

For veterinarians who want to pursue advanced training in order to specialize in a particular area of veterinary medicine, the UC Davis veterinary hospital offers the largest clinical training program of any hospital. The House Officer Program currently offers 106 internships, fellowships and residencies in 34 specialty disciplines. Internships and fellowships usually last one year, but most house officers pursue residencies that last three or four years.

During the program, these veterinarians (under the tutelage of faculty specialists) work as practicing clinicians in the hospital, and see hundreds, if not thousands, of patients during the course of their training. Following successful completion of a residency, veterinarians will then take a rigorous examination to become board certified in their specialty. “American Colleges” of particular fields of veterinary medicine conduct the examinations, and those who pass are deemed Diplomates of that college.

Every year, former UC Davis residents take the examinations and pass at a rate well above the national average. This year, the hospital welcomed more than two dozen new Diplomates into its training program alumni.

The high quality of UC Davis training programs, and how they correlate to board certifications, can clearly be seen in the success rate of residents who take credentialing examinations. Four former hospital residents took this year’s board examination for the American College of Zoological Medicine, and all four passed. Typical pass rates for that examination range from 30-50 percent. This high success rate is seen throughout the hospital’s range of specialties. The Diagnostic Imaging Residency Program boasts a 100% board certification examination pass rate over the past 20 years, and all former residents from that time period are still currently employed as veterinary specialist radiologists.