Spectrum of Care Initiative

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Spectrum of Care Initiative

***This article first appeared in the May 2024 issue of AAVMC Vet-Med Educator***

The AAVMC hosted the day-long Spectrum of Care (SOC) Symposium, sponsored by the Stanton Foundation, on Thursday, April 11th, 2024, as part of the AAVMC annual Catalyze Conference in Washington, D.C. The purpose of the symposium was to support CVMs interested in implementing the SOC Education Model into their curricula.

A total of 14 speakers presented across the Symposium, representing nine different member institutions. Speakers focused on the following topics, which provided valuable insights and tools to facilitate SOC curricular changes:
•    The societal need for graduates prepared for SOC practice
•    How CVMs can introduce and strengthen SOC preparation in their curricula
•    How to utilize profession-wide partnerships to enhance SOC preparation
•    Change management resources to help programs make SOC curricular change
•    Learning experiences that prepare students for SOC practice

After the Symposium, AAVMC held a town hall where attendees discussed the big issues the academic veterinary medicine community must consider when preparing students for SOC practice. Attendees also brainstormed the resources that AAVMC can provide to support the academic veterinary medicine community in taking steps to address these issues.

Over 100 participants engaged in various Spectrum of Care sessions, reflecting a strong interest in advancing veterinary education to better prepare students to offer a range of high-quality care options to a socioeconomically diverse clientele. Discussions also revealed opportunities for further efforts to support this preparation. For example, faculty articulated the need for practical tools to aid SOC implementation, such as train-the-trainer resources and examples of SOC teaching materials. Additionally, there was interest in resources to facilitate discussions among faculty members, enabling them to advocate effectively for SOC integration within their institutions. Concerns about terminology, including avoiding phrases like "gold standard," also emerged, as well as consensus on the need for more empirical evidence regarding the efficacy of care options across the spectrum.

The Spectrum of Care Initiative Task Force will continue to work hard to provide resources that will support SOC preparation throughout veterinary education programs. We thank the Stanton Foundation for their generous support, which has propelled this initiative forward and provided the necessary momentum for progress. We also commend the dedication of the SOCI Task Force members, whose tireless efforts have resulted in valuable resources for the veterinary education community. Stay tuned as these resources will be made publicly available in the coming months, with ongoing refinement based on community feedback and evolving needs.

Learn more about the Spectrum of Care Initiative

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