What role can the technician have in communicating information to clients about proper nutrition?

Answer:

  • Each member of the veterinary practice team has a responsibility to communicate the importance of nutrition to clients. In fact, every member should be viewed as a “nutrition champion.”1
  • Technician’s overall role: Understands the medical reasons for the primary role of disease prevention (which includes proper nutrition) in pet health and provides client education and counseling.1 Supports the practice culture of nutrition as the fifth vital assessment.
  • Technician’s specific tasks:
    1. Obtains diet history and temperature, pulse, respiration, pain, and nutrition.
    2. Performs preliminary exam if it is part of the practice’s procedures.1
    3. Reviews tests, assessments, and procedures that will be performed on the patient due to findings from the nutritional assessment or extended nutritional evaluation.1
    4. Explains the use of relevant tools (measuring cups, nutritional handouts) to the client.1
    5. Asks the client if there are any further questions.2
    6. Reinforces the specific dietary recommendation (specific food name, form, and amount).2
The Science Behind our Recommendations
1. American Animal Hospital Association. Deploy your team. Trends magazine. 2012;28(9)(suppl):S12-S14. 2. American Animal Hospital Association. The convergence protocol: a blueprint to the Preventive Healthcare Guidelines. Trends magazine.  2012; 28(11)(suppl): S3-S5.