AVMA issues report on veterinary capacity

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) today released its 2015 AVMA Report on Veterinary Capacity.

The fifth installment of the AVMA’s six-part 2015 Veterinary Economic Report series, the report focuses on the capacity of the market for veterinary services.VetCapacityEXECSUMCover

Are there too many veterinarians? Some in the profession think so. But if you take a closer look at the numbers, that’s not necessarily the case. In fact, the AVMA takes the position that there are not too many veterinarians in the workforce. What the U.S. veterinary profession is experiencing is a situation of excess capacity, in which a certain percentage of veterinarians’ capacity to provide services is going unused. Excess capacity means that services are being provided in excess of the quantity demanded at a specific price.

The concept of excess capacity is new to the veterinary profession, having been first introduced in the 2013 AVMA Workforce Study. The confusion over the difference between an oversupply of veterinarians and excess capacity continues to linger in the profession. The difference between the two is the use of price in determining what excess capacity is versus oversupply.

The report series is designed to help veterinarians better understand the markets they operate in and the factors that affect their livelihood. The 2015 AVMA Report on Veterinary Capacity can be purchased online from the AVMA Store as part of the six-installment series, and free summaries of the first five published reports also are available. The price for the series is $249 for AVMA members and $499 for nonmembers. The final report will be available upon publication. The reports and their scheduled publication dates are:

  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Markets (January)
  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Employment (March)
  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Debt and Income (May)
  • The AVMA Report on the Market for Veterinarians (July)
  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Capacity (October)
  • The AVMA Report on the Market for Veterinary Education (October)

Here’s a brief summary of what each report explores:

  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Markets: Provides data and information about general U.S. economic conditions, the markets for veterinary education, veterinarians and veterinary services, and workforce capacity utilization.
  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Employment: We surveyed veterinarians across the country and across the profession to better understand employment, unemployment and underemployment, as well as the factors affecting each.
  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Debt and Income: This report takes an in-depth look at salaries for new and existing veterinarians and their veterinary education debt load, as well as debt-to-income ratios and the net present value of a veterinary career.
  • The AVMA Report on the Market for Veterinarians: Ever wonder about the supply of and demand for veterinarians, what type of work they do and how much they are compensated? This report explores the demographics of the profession.
  • The AVMA Report on Veterinary Capacity: This report includes our excess capacity forecast and explores our capacity utilization survey, descriptive statistics for capacity utilization and the factors affecting capacity utilization.
  • The AVMA Report on the Market for Veterinary Education: The market for veterinary education is the beginning of the pipeline to the market for veterinary services. This report looks at the types of students applying to veterinary school, and the supply of and demand for veterinary education.

5 thoughts on “AVMA issues report on veterinary capacity

  1. Truely unacceptable that we would have to pay to view the reports. Especially since we all know what the market is – no matter what YOUR report says

  2. ” A workforce model that provides the appropriate strategies to improve the long-term sustainability of veterinary practices will require a continued effort with participation from every veterinarian in the profession.”

    This is the concluding sentence in the latest summary released, on veterinary capacity. I contacted the author of the initial report at the beginning of the year, who defended the cost of the report to veterinarians by saying that it cost a lot of money to produce. I contacted my AVMA district representative next, and since then, who initially said that the discount was fair, and the second time said that no, the governing board decided not to charge veterinarians at all for the report. That was more than several months ago, and, as can be seen, they are still charging dues paying members.

    If the AVMA does truly want the “participation from every veterinarian in the profession” a great start would be to not charge a single cent for the report to a dues paying member. If they want it, give it to them. My darn dues paid for the thing. Give us the whole report, not just your spin on the data.

  3. After paying steep annual dues, we have to pay a big sum for the report, which should be made available to view free for members. No wonder veterinarians are losing ground…over supply, then loss of business, requiring higher fees to maintain the business. This is due to all the new vet schools graduating a 20% oversupply in veterinarians. It takes a toll on all of us. I’m glad I’m not starting out practicing now. The AVMA should have intervened and lobbied to stop all the new colleges of Veterinary medicine. It’s ruining the profession

  4. The veterinary profession is somehow exempt from normal supply and demand economics.

    Client visits are down, graduate numbers are up, fragmentation of services has increased, YET……things are good in veterinary medicine.

    Thanks for reassuring me, AVMA.