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VSPN CE Course STAF139-0315: Compassion Fatigue Module 2: Healing Our Practices
Audio only: The lectures for this course will be presented in a predominantly audio format.
Please come prepared to listen.

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Instructor(s): Katherine Dobbs, RVT, CVPM, PHR
Course Open: March 4, 2015-April 4, 2015
Real Time Sessions (RTS): Wednesdays, March 11, 18 and 25, 2015; 9:00-10:30pm ET (USA)
Course RTS Times in Your Area: World Clock Converter

Practice Sessions: 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: This intermediate course is designed for all leaders or management team members in veterinary practice or an animal care facility. This includes practice owners, hospital managers, supervisors and more. The Compassion Fatigue Module 1 (Healing Ourselves) is a logical recommended precursor for this course, but is not required.
VSPN CE Course: This course has been submitted for RACE approval for veterinarians and veterinary technicians. This course is VHMA approved for CVPM credits. (RACE program #22-15481; VHMA program #12-09)
The Veterinary Information Network (VIN) is RACE Provider #22.

Course Description:
Compassion Fatigue has been called the "cost of caring," and it is costing our practice or facility money! When we have team members who are suffering from chronic compassion fatigue it can affect the policies and processes of the business and infect the overall culture. The symptoms of organizational compassion fatigue include many basic management challenges that can affect any business; yet in a care giving profession, we should first examine compassion fatigue to see if healing first can help our business be stronger and more profitable. If your practice is not currently experiencing symptoms of compassion fatigue, it could only be a matter of time. Prevention is possible by monitoring your team, recognizing the symptoms and treating as quickly as possible. If your practice needs to become healthier or you want to preserve the healthy workplace you have now, utilize the techniques in this course to keep your team on top.

This course consists of three (3) Real Time Sessions of ninety (90) minutes each, supplemental library materials, interactive message board discussions, a mandatory end-of-course test, and may include online multiple choice quizzes (after each Real Time Session). 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.

*To learn more about the requirements for earning a CE certificate, please refer to Receiving Your CE Credit and Course Completion Certificate.

Upon completion of this course, the participant should be able to Course Materials: 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:
Katherine Dobbs holds credentials as a RVT (Registered Veterinary Technician), CVPM (Certified Veterinary Practice Manager), and PHR (Professional in Human Resources). She has taught and lectured worldwide both in onsite and online venues.

Course Outline:
Week 1 (Real Time Session March 11): Compassion Fatigue � Defining the Healthy Workplace
Content: As a practice owner, manager, or leader within your practice or facility, you know you are responsible for the culture created in your workplace. Yet the emotional health of the employees around you also affects that culture. When team members have burnout or compassion fatigue, the entire practice suffers. We review the basics of compassion fatigue and burnout from Module 1. We look at the ways burnout appears in the workplace and what we can do to alleviate these stresses. As you learn the symptoms of organizational compassion fatigue, it will be easy to see why it could be causing you time and energy as you deal with the drama and trauma of the team. You will also see the effects on the bottom line profitability of the practice. You will be able to determine how much your organization may be suffering from the ill effects of compassion fatigue and how the members of management must process compassion fatigue on the personal and the practice level to provide healing and prevention for better practice health.

Week 2 (Real Time Session March 18): Compassion Fatigue � Creating the Healthy Workplace
Content: With increased awareness comes the realization that it is time to stop talking about compassion fatigue and actually DO something about it! Within the management of the practice there are many protocols and policies that can help spread awareness and prevent the negative symptoms. From the time a person is interviewed and hired to monitoring of the compassion fatigue levels throughout his/her career tactics can be put in place to limit fatigue. Tactics may include conversations in staff meetings, critical incident debriefing, and more. It is essential the practice take a proactive approach to becoming and maintaining a positive work environment rather than letting the workplace become toxic. Learn how to create a Culture of Compassion that will benefit your practice, the team members, and ultimately the animals, and those who love them

Week 3 (Real Time Session March 25): Compassion Fatigue � Developing Action Steps for a Healthy Workplace
Content: Taking the concepts from Weeks 1 & 2, we look at how we can develop an action plan to cope with and minimize compassion fatigue and burnout in our organizations. Working from the list of how burnout appears in our practices we will identify hiring questions to use, a project log template to implement, strategies to increase employees� job satisfaction (without breaking the bank!), ideas to strengthen the team, and methods to enhance respect among team members. We open up more room to discuss particular symptoms we�ve seen in our organizations and how we can teach others to not play the �blame game.� Most importantly, we discuss how to present this topic to the other leaders in the practice so they will support compassion fatigue education and how to focus the discussion on members of the team that need it most.

CE Credits: 4.5

Tuition: $90 ($81 early bird special if enrolled by February 18, 2015)

*Enroll in both Modules by February 4, 2015 and receive a 15% discount off the regular course price.

*Students currently enrolled in and taking at least 2 classes or 5 units at an AVMA accredited or CAAHT approved Veterinary Technician Program may be eligible to receive a 50% discount off the regular rate for this course (upon verification of student status).
*To ensure participants are ready and prepared for classes, enrollment will close at 5 pm ET February 18, 2015, or when the maximum number of participants is reached.
*For more information on how online CE works, see the Participant Resource Center.

To Enroll:
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  1. 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.
  2. Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from and addresses. Email is our major form of communication with participants; personal emails are highly recommended rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
  3. 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.
  4. For further assistance call 800-846-0028 ext. 792 or email Please include the course title, your full name, and contact information in your correspondence.
*Note: "This course is submitted for approval for 4.5 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 CE at 800-846-0028 ext. 792 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 VSPN office 800-846-0028 ext. 792 to discuss eligibility for a pro-rated refund.
* Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VSPN office at 800-846-0028 ext. 792.

*For more information on VSPN's upcoming CE courses, check the VSPN Course Catalog.

The CE team:

Charlotte Waack, RVT, CVT
VSPN Director/VSPN CE Interim Director

VSPN CE Services:
800-846-0028 or 530-756-4881; ext. 792
Direct line to VIN/VSPN from the United Kingdom: (014522) 26154
Direct line to VIN/VSPN from Australia: 011 +61 26 145-2357

800.700.4636  |  |  530.756.4881  |  Fax: 530.756.6035
777 West Covell Blvd, Davis, CA 95616

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