Vets going 'Back to Basics and Beyond'
With veterinarians viewed essentially as 'animal doctors', their work is usually seen as separate and distinct from human health care, having very little or nothing at all to do with the latter.
Nothing could be further from the truth, though, as they are intrinsically linked, an important fact to be highlighted at this year's Caribbean Veterinary Medical Association Conference.
'Moving Veterinary Medicine ... Back to Basics and Beyond' is the theme for the 30th staging of the four-day event, which gets under way today at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel, New Kingston.
"When veterinarians treat animals, in a sense, they treat people," consultant veterinarian Dr Paul Cadogan told The Gleaner.
"This is because safeguarding animal health and welfare has a direct effect on the well-being of people. Controlling diseases, food safety and security are linked to the protection livelihoods and maintenance of the balance of nature, which is essential to preserving the human-animal bond. This is all part of what vets do, and so, in reality, what we have is a one-health system," according to Cadogan.
"More than 150 participants from the Caribbean, Americas and beyond will discuss veterinary practice encom-passing the spectrum of species from dogs to horses, chickens to cattle, fish to sea urchins, birds to bees, and much more, taking us back to the 'basic' reasons our veterinary profession is essential, while looking 'beyond' to take us to the next level in safeguarding the future of all life," he added.
Dr Mitsie Vargas, director of Orchid Springs Animal Hospital in Winter Haven, Florida, will deliver the keynote address which promises to be very interesting and informative.
Vargas practises conventional medicine and surgery, along with alternative medical practices, including acupuncture and other traditional Chinese therapies.