PRAC116-0313: Veterinary Ethics
Enrollment is closed.
***Note: This course will run again in October of 2014.
, DVM, PhD
Raymond Anthony PhD
March 28-June 2, 2013
REAL TIME SESSIONS (RTS):
Thursdays, April 4, 11, 18, 25, May 2, 9, 16 and 23, 2013; 8:00-10:00 pm ET (USA)
Course RTS Times in Your Area:
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In order to prepare you for a successful experience
in your CE course, we request you attend a Practice Session prior to the first
Real Time Session. Please arrive promptly at the start time; each Practice Session
is up to 1 hour in length.
For more information, please visit the
CE Practice Area
*The instructors for this course will be using audio which will require you to have a headset or speakers to listen.
If you have any concerns regarding your computer's audio capabilities, please be sure to attend
one of the Practice Sessions.
Level and Prerequisites:
course is aimed at small animal practitioners
in private practice who have encountered ethical dilemmas and have an
interest in developing the tools to work through ethically challenging
situations. Although the course is aimed at exploring veterinarians'
responsibilities in practice, credentialed veterinary technicians are
most welcome to attend.
VIN CE Course:
Open to veterinarians and veterinary staff.
This course has been RACE approved for veterinarians
and veterinary technicians.
Ethically challenging situations are very common in veterinary medicine.
Yet, unlike many other professions, veterinarians often receive very
little formal training in ethics, ethical theory, and moral
decision-making. Understanding ethical theory and its applications
can make it easier to stay out of trouble with clients and regulators.
It can also help to stimulate dialogue about ethical issues amongst
colleagues and veterinary team members. Learn the ground rules for
engaging in ethical discussion and how to look at your practice
policies and interactions with colleagues and staff in a new way.
The first three sessions focus on the basics of ethics and moral
decision making and the remaining five sessions about the application
of moral decision making to specific topics relevant to veterinary
This course consists of eight (8) 2-hour Real Time Session, supplemental library materials,
interactive message board discussions, and a mandatory end-of-course test.
Successful completion (scoring 80% or better) on the end-of-course test is required
to earn a certificate of completion for the course.
*The lecture portion of this course will be an audio presentation, please be prepared to listen.
Upon completion of this course, the participant should be able to
- Enhance their moral sensitivity, i.e. their ability to identify
all the relevant moral issues in an ethically challenging situation.
- Understand the various ethical theories and be able to apply them,
through decision making tools, to work through ethical issues.
- Gain an understanding of the complexity of the many ethical
problems that occur in veterinary practice.
- Improve moral self-reflection and be able to challenge themselves,
their colleagues, and staff to think about ethical issues in an
organized and rigorous fashion.
Course materials will be available
in the course library prior to each Real Time Session.
Required Textbook(s): There is no required textbook for this course.
About the Instructors:
Dr. Carol Morgan
- Legood, G. (2000). Veterinary Ethics, an Introduction. Continuum.
- Rollin, B. (2006). An Introduction to Veterinary Medical Ethics: Theory and Cases, 2nd Ed. Wiley-Blackwell.
Available in the VIN bookstore:
Remember to login in order to receive your VIN discount.
- Tannenbaum, J. (1995). Veterinary Ethics; Animal Welfare, Client Relations, Competition, and Collegiality, 2nd Ed. Mosby.
ISBN-13: 978- 0815188407
graduated from the Western College
of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, in 1988.
She obtained a PhD in 2009 from the University of British Columbia
(Vancouver) in Interdisciplinary Studies through the W. Maurice
Young Centre for Applied Ethics and the UBC Animal Welfare Program.
Her doctoral research focused on moral decision making by veterinarians
with respect to animal welfare decisions.
She has given lectures on ethics to students and practitioners both
nationally and internationally and written articles on the topic.
Dr. Morgan sits on the College of Veterinarians of BC (CVBC) disciplinary
committee (tasked with deliberating breaches to provincial veterinary
regulations), chairs the CVBC Animal Welfare Committee, and sits on
the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association Animal Welfare Committee.
She is a past editor and historian for the Society of Veterinary
Dr. Raymond Anthony
is a tenured, Associate
Professor of Philosophy at the University of Alaska Anchorage, USA.
He holds a PhD in Philosophy from Purdue University.
His areas of specialization include Ethical Theory and Environmental
Philosophy (especially the nexus between
environmental-animal-agricultural-food ethics), and the philosophy
of technology. His current research interests in these areas deal
with social justice, participatory democracy, obligations to future
generations and non-human animals.
Dr. Anthony has an international reputation for his expertise in
bioethical issues in the areas specified above. Dr. Anthony also
teaches philosophy of mind and philosophy of science courses.
Dr. Anthony is ethics advisor for the American Veterinary Medical
Association's Panel on Euthanasia, Panel on Humane Slaughter, and
Animal Welfare Committee and is a former council member for Agriculture,
Food and Human Values. Dr. Anthony is the receipt of a National
Science Foundation grant for climate ethics and an USDA grant
to develop teaching aids for animal welfare ethics education.
You can learn more about Dr. Anthony at:
(Real Time Session April 4):
- What is ethics?
- Understand 'ethics' as a formal discipline
- Differences between 'ethics' and 'morality' and other areas
such as law, religion, sociology, and personal opinion.
- Understand the main ethical theories, recognize them,
and understand how you use them when making an ethical argument.
(Real Time Session April 11):
Moral Development/Moral Psychology Review and Moral Decision Making
- Understand the different facets of making moral decisions
- Develop the skills necessary to recognize all of the
ethical issues in a situation
- Develop the skills necessary to manage ethical problems,
including using various tools to resolve ethical problems.
(Real Time Session April 18):
- Understand the scope of professional responsibilities
and the responsibilities of individual professionals
- Review of professional tenets relating to veterinary medicine
and other professions
- Understand the importance of trust in professional relations.
- Understand how character traits and behaviors contribute to
(Real Time Session April 25):
Responsibilities to Clients
- Professional models - the veterinary/client relationship
- Informed consent - standards of comprehension,
standards of disclosure, and client competence
- When is it acceptable to break client confidentiality?
How should it be done?
- Handling difficult clients
- Should difficult clients be penalized?
- Is firing clients ever acceptable? Is it ever unacceptable?
- Medical records
- Why are medical records so important
- Ownership of information
- Including non-medical facts within medical records
- Medical Errors
(Real Time Session May 2):
Patient Centered Ethics
- Provision of Care - Do veterinarians have a responsibility
to provide care?
- Is pro-bono work a professional responsibility for
veterinarians? Is lower level care acceptable?
- Do veterinarians have an obligation to provide at
least minimal care in emergency situations -
to client's animals? To any animal?
- Non-Therapeutic Procedures
- Are cosmetics procedures acceptable?
- What are veterinarians responsibilities with respect
to behavioral surgeries (e.g. declaws, debarks)
- Pain Management Ethics
- Is pain management optional in your clinic?
- What should be done when clients refuse at-home pain management?
(Real Time Session May 9):
Patient Centered Ethics - Continued
- Quality of life
- What responsibilities do veterinarians have about
patient quality of life? Are veterinarians or animal
owners best at determining the interests of a patient?
- End-of-life issues
- Who should decide if euthanasia is appropriate?
- Passive and active euthanasia
- Is it acceptable to let ill patients die a natural death?
If so, how should this be managed?
(Real Time Session May 16):
- Performing procedures competently and scope of practice
- When is it acceptable to perform a procedure that you are not
sure you are competent to perform?
- Referring to specialists and referred clients/patients
- When should you refer to a specialist?
- How should second opinions be handled?
- Reacting to evidence of professional incompetence of a colleague
- Delegation to non-veterinary staff
- Is it ever acceptable for non-veterinarians to perform surgery? Dentistry? Euthanasia?
(Real Time Session May 23):
CE CREDITS: 16
- Ethics around prescribing and dispensing
- Should you dispense medications from your practice?
How should patients and clients be protected?
- Avoiding conflicts of interest in business relationships (i.e. with Pet Stores, Suppliers)
- Is it appropriate to have referral arrangements with pet service
providers, such as pet stores and groomers?
- How should veterinarians manage rebate and incentive programs
with suppliers (i.e. diagnostic suppliers,
- Responsibilities in Advertising/Social Media
$320 ($288 early bird special if enrolled by March 14, 2013)
*To ensure participants are ready and prepared for classes, enrollment will close when
the maximum number of participants is reached or at 5pm ET the day of the first
Real Time Session unless otherwise noted. If the first Real Time Session is on a
weekend, course enrollment will close on the Friday before the first Real Time Session.
*For more information on how online CE works, see the
Participant Resource Center
- Enrollment qualifications: VIN CE courses are open to
VIN member and non-member veterinarians. Veterinarians enrolling in a VSPN CE course
must be a VIN member. Veterinary support staff must be a VSPN member to enroll in a
VSPN CE or a VIN CE course open to VSPN member enrollment.
- Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from @vspn.org
and @vin.com addresses. Email is our major form of communication with participants;
personal emails are highly recommended rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
- Each person is individually responsible for his/her own registration.
To ensure that all information received is secure and correct, please do not enroll
for a course on behalf of another individual.
- For further assistance call 1-800-700-INFO (4636) or email (VIN CE)
CEonVIN@vin.com or (VSPN CE)
Please include the course title, your full name, and contact information in your correspondence.
*Note: "This course is approved for 16 continuing education credits in jurisdictions
which recognize AAVSB RACE approval; however participants should be aware that some
boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or
restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education."
Call VSPN/VIN CE at 1-800-700-4636 for further information.
(Attendees are encouraged to check with their licensing jurisdiction(s) for
information regarding recognition by their board).
Course withdrawal and refund policy:
A complete refund of the paid course price will be
issued when your withdrawal request is received prior to the listed start date of the course.
If you wish to withdraw after the start date please contact the VIN/VSPN office 1-800-700-INFO (4636)
to discuss eligibility for a pro-rated refund.
* Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you
call the VIN/VSPN office at 1-800-700-INFO (4636).
*For more information on VSPN's upcoming CE courses, check the
VSPN Course Catalog
Katherine James, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (SAIM)
VIN Education Coordinator
VIN CE Services: CEonVIN@vin.com
1-800-846-0028 or 1-530-756-4881 or direct line to VIN/VSPN from the United Kingdom: 01452226154
Andrea Pomposo (Andrea@vin.com); ext 126
Debbie Friedler (Debbie@vin.com); ext 756
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