As an industry veterinarian, I attend many veterinary conferences. After the buzz from the first Veterinary Innovation Summit (VIS) in 2017, I eagerly signed up for the 2018 VIS. My experience was anything but disappointing.
The summit is designed to provide ample networking opportunities among large industry partners, entrepreneurial startups, key opinion leaders, and practitioners in an interactive, intimate setting.
This year there were three major themes:
- Patients Like Us
- The Human-Animal Bond
- The Future of Practice Models and Ownership
Each theme is supported by group Ted-talk like presentations, followed by breakout sessions. Some breakout sessions involved telemedicine companies pitching their product or service, some tried to solve issues of incorporating new technology into practice, while others introduced brand new topics to veterinary medicine, such as blockchain and on-demand veterinary services using smart speakers.
I submitted a topic two weeks prior to the conference for an additional networking opportunity on a crowd-sourced topic, (in other words anyone willing with a good topic can speak at the conference). My topic, How to Simplify Telemedicine Practice, attempted to answer the important question of how to demonstrate the value of telemedicine to general practitioners.
Leading this discussion raised some answers and more questions, and the veterinary innovation council is open to hearing our suggestions. We must start answering these questions regarding new technology that our clients expect. If we do not, we risk our profession getting dragged along with the innovators, instead of creating solutions to our current problems or client and staff demands.
For those that are interested in being the change we wish to see in our profession, I highly encourage you to attend next years Veterinary Innovation Summit. I hope to see you there.