Veterinary Practice Act signed by Governor, goes into effect August 10, 2022

Veterinary Practice Act signed by Governor, goes into effect August 10, 2022

The 2022 Colorado Veterinary Practice Act (HB22-1235) was signed by Governor Polis on Wednesday, June 8, 2022. This means the updated Veterinary Practice Act will go into effect on Wednesday, August 10 at 12:01 am. Read the full bill summary here.

What are the changes to the Veterinary Practice Act?

(Note: these will go into effect on August 10, 2022)

  1. Continues the veterinary practice act for 11 more years until 2033.
  2. Establishes title protection regulation of veterinary technicians (this amendment was proposed jointly by CVMA and CACVT), which goes into effect January 1, 2023. Click here to read our full article and timeline of what this means.
  3. Expands the administration of rabies vaccines:
    • Allows administration of rabies vaccine by a person who is not a licensed veterinarian under direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian, or through the indirect supervision of a licensed veterinarian if the person is working on behalf of an animal shelter for shelter-owned animals
    • Amends public health statute 25-4-607 to allow veterinarians to delegate under indirect supervision the administration of rabies vaccinations in a public health emergency situation
  4. Expands continuing education requirements for veterinarians’ license renewal:
    • Allows veterinarians to receive up to 16 hours of credit toward relicensing for continuing education on topics such as client communication, management, leadership, wellbeing and developing a highly function veterinary workforce
    • Requires two hours of jurisprudence CE on the veterinary practice act per license renewal period
  5. Requires veterinarians to create a written plan for the storage, security, and disposal of patient records.
  6. Permits the state veterinary board to require a physical examination of a licensed veterinarian if there is reasonable cause to believe the veterinarian is unable to practice with reasonable skill and safety (Note: This provision exists in other practice acts such as the Dentist and Dental Hygienists Practice Act, Medical Practice Act, Nurses and Nurse Aides Practice Act, and Pharmacists Practice Act)
  7. Requires a veterinarian to notify the board if the veterinarian suffers from a physical illness or condition or a behavioral or mental health disorder that renders the veterinarian unable to practice with reasonable skill and safety
  8. Repeals the requirement that the state veterinary board send a letter of admonition by certified mail.
  9. Cleans up vague or conflicting language related to supervision:
    • Defines indirect supervision
    • Resolves conflicting language among 12-315-105 (b) and (k) and 12-315-116 regarding duties delegated to veterinary students under direct supervision
    • Clarifies the requirements concerning confidential agreements

What does this mean for you?

Colorado veterinarians will continue to practice medicine under the current Veterinary Practice Act. On August 10 at 12:01 am, the updated Veterinary Practice Act will take effect.

The new CE requirements will take effect for the licensing cycle that runs from November 1, 2022 to October 31, 2024.

The regulation of veterinary technicians will begin on January 1, 2023. Read the full article here.

CVMA thanks our elected leaders!

Three highly respected, thoughtful, and dedicated legislators have been working with CVMA to guide HB22-1235 through the 2022 legislative session. We invite Colorado veterinarians to extend warm thanks to these elected leaders.

CVMA is very appreciative for the House of Representatives leadership of our prime sponsors Rep. Karen McCormick, DVM, who represents District 11 in Boulder County, and Rep. Marc Catlin, who represents District 58, including Dolores, Montezuma, Montrose, and San Miguel counties. In the Senate, CVMA appreciates working with prime sponsor Sen. Joann Ginal, who represents District 14 in Larimer County.

Additionally, we’d like to extend a thank you to our Practice Act Review Task force (chaired by CVMA member Dr. Michelle Larsen) who put forth many, many hours of their time, knowledge, and efforts in making sure that Colorado veterinarians were fully represented in this review.

Why CVMA’s Advocacy Work is Important

One of the most essential and impactful services that CVMA provides on behalf of members is advocating on behalf of Colorado’s veterinary profession in before various legislative and regulatory groups. This work is empowered by the strength of 2,600+ CVMA members standing alongside us, and it is funded exclusively by your annual membership dues. Your commitment to CVMA means that we can effectively work at many levels to protect you, your practice, and the veterinary profession in Colorado. We consistently ensure that legislators know how proposed bills can help or hurt your livelihood, veterinary medicine, and animal health and welfare. No one else will do this work for the Colorado veterinary profession. This effort requires continual attention and action and it can only be accomplished when we come together as a single, unified voice. Together, we protect veterinary medicine.

Encourage your friends and colleagues to join CVMA. Empower the CVMA Political Action Committee with your contribution.