In challenging times, having a partner like VetStrategy to rely on can be immensely beneficial for your practice. Candice Pacholuk, Practice Manager at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital in Courtenay, BC shared her perspective on how VetStrategy supported and continues to help her hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the interview with Candice now, ‘By your side even during tough times: A Practice Manager’s perspective’.
What was your experience like during the COVID-19 pandemic?
“Van Isle Veterinary Hospital’s experience during the COVID-19 pandemic has been extremely challenging. Even after 20 years in the industry, you are not prepared for something like this. The constant unknown, especially in the early days, meant a lot of change in how we managed the flow of our days, how we worked with each other, and how we cared for our patients. Constantly adapting on a daily and weekly basis pushed us far outside of our comfort zone.”
What was the impact on your hospital?
“There were ebbs and flows to the impact the pandemic had on our practice. After the initial few weeks, the demand for services greatly increased which nobody expected. Due to the limited types of services we were allowed to offer, we were faced with seeing only sick and urgent cases all day long. Some days it seemed like there was no end in sight. We were not able to see cute puppies and kittens for their vaccine appointments or build relationships with our clientele around wellness exams. Instead, our team’s days were filled with intense veterinary medicine. The increase in sick patients unfortunately also meant an increase in euthanasia cases and this started to take a toll on the team.”
How did your team adapt to this difficult situation?
“Through it all, I was blown away by the response from my team. Everyone pulled together, supported each other, and did what needed to be done to ensure not only our livelihoods (which at that time, held a lot of uncertainty), but also the health and well-being of our community’s pets.”
Are you satisfied with the response, guidance and support you received from VetStrategy?
“I was very satisfied with the support and guidance our team received and still receives from VetStrategy. Even though this was a never-before-seen situation for everyone, the communication between management and our operation team was at a gold standard. We receive regular updates from head office and hold daily Zoom check-in meetings to unite all the managers on Vancouver Island. We could also count on an amazing marketing team to create the necessary communications for our clients. This was one less thing for us to stress about so the additional support was more than welcome!”
What was your biggest surprise?
“My biggest surprise was how quickly the team adapted and it brought us together in a beautiful way. The collaboration around schedules and supporting each other when it came to balancing work and the new stresses on home life was remarkable. No idea was off the table and everyone did what needed to be done with the sole purpose of keeping each other safe while continuing to care for our community’s pets.”
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