Vet Spotlight: Dr. Banks: Telehealth is the wave of the future
Meet Dr. Banks, a multi-state licensed veterinarian who owns a small animal practice in Houston, Texas that focuses on internal medicine, geriatric health care, soft tissue surgery, and preventative care for dogs and cats. She has 2 dogs (Briar Patch and Kirvin) and 3 cats (Tater, Pewter, and Marshall).
“I have had a wonderful experience on Vetster. I have met fantastic clients who really just want the best care possible for their pets…I enjoy being able to offer helpful advice. Vetster has allowed me to help clients and pets all over the United States.”
What has your experience been like using Vetster?
I love being able to make simple suggestions to improve the pet’s overall health. My appointments often go beyond the chief complaint. Sometimes I am a second opinion on lab test results, and sometimes we move from a simple ear infection and talk about everything from allergies to arthritis to cataracts. I enjoy being able to offer them helpful advice. Vetster has allowed me to help clients and pets all over the United States.
What is your favorite part about using the platform?
The most important to me is helping pet parents and their furry family members. Perhaps it’s a situation where the pets are too anxious or nervous to go to a veterinary clinic, their veterinary clinic is booked up for weeks. Whatever the reason is, I love knowing that I can really make a difference for them.
In an ideal world, what does telehealth look like to you?
I strongly believe telehealth is the wave of the future. As more states allow online veterinarians to write prescriptions, telehealth is merging into telemedicine. I believe telemedicine won’t take long to become a normal practice. Many in-person veterinarians are so busy that they welcome help from online veterinarians. There are urgent care facilities that refer pets to Vetster. They need help because they have crowded and often overloaded facilities. Many of those cases are easily solved via telehealth or telemedicine.
What would you say to other vets who are interested in using Vetster but are hesitant to get started?
Jump in! This is a chance to see real cases and make a difference in the lives of pets and pet parents. I find myself enjoying Vetster appointments more and more every day. In my own practice, I am on my feet sometimes all day. I may spend 3-4 hours standing over a surgery table. Vetster is a welcome relief from my busy in-clinic experience. The 30-minute appointments make it easy to ask questions, get to know the client and patient, and offer helpful advice. If you are licensed in certain states, you can even write prescriptions. There are no in-clinic distractions. You will love it. So, give it a try!
Tell us about a time you really helped a pet and pet parent using Vetster, and what that meant to you as a veterinarian.
One time I saw a bulldog named Cleo. She had collapsed in the heat and was in respiratory distress. Her gums were blue. She desperately needed to go to an urgent care facility, but the owners were worried she might not survive the transport. It was very hot outside, and they were panicking about taking her back outside and putting her into the car. I did my best to calm them. I instructed them on how to cool her down with cold wet towels and fan right in front of her. I advised them to run their car’s AC before they even tried to carry Cleo outside. I told them how to sling her up in a towel since she was unable to walk. I made sure they called the Urgent Care facility to tell them Cleo was heading that way and having trouble breathing.
Once I finished the appointment, I thought about Cleo. Did she survive the transport? About 2 weeks later, Cleo scheduled another appointment with me. Imagine my delight! I was able to help Cleo. I hope I played a small part in saving her life.
What is your most memorable case you handled on Vetster?
The most memorable case I have seen on Vetster is a dog named Blu. Blu is a 9-year-old Siberian Husky. She was diagnosed with diabetes mellitus about 6 months ago. Her owners have dealt with many issues while trying to regulate her blood sugar. She currently has large swings in her glucose level ranging from the 100s to the 700s, sometimes all in one day. We finally found the right glucose monitor allowing us to see the high-range numbers. The owners have done a great job checking her glucose at home.
Blu has dealt with recurring urinary tract infections, several episodes of severe hyperglycemia, and elevated liver enzymes. Thanks to Vetster, I can be there for the clients whenever they have questions. They got a Urine Culture with their in-person veterinarian allowing us to start a 4-week course of the appropriate antibiotic. We have adjusted her insulin dose as needed and when her numbers are high, they are monitoring her for ketones at home. Recently we started her on flaxseed and Denamarin to help with her cortisol levels and support her liver.
I have had the privilege of being a part of Blu’s journey. Being able to help a pet through the ups and downs of chronic disease is so important to me. Vetster allows me to do just that. I love being able to help Blu.
If you're interested in being featured in our blog, please contact Jennifer, our Manager of Veterinary Success by emailing email@example.com.
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