The Power Of The Veterinary Receptionist!


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The thing I love most about being a vet is being a part of a team. It is wonderful to be with likeminded animal-loving people, working together ensure our clients and their pets are well cared for and have a good experience in our practice.

I can’t do my work without my colleagues; the nurses, the assistants, the receptionists, the office staff and they can’t do theirs without me. Our days can be busy, and sometimes challenging, but knowing this amazing squad has my back has pulled me through some of my darkest moments.

And it is not just the vets and nurses who impact on our patients health and well-being, the front-of-house staff have a huge effect as well!

The person behind the veterinary reception desk is a very special one.

They have to have brilliant customer service skills; able to welcome a new puppy with cuddles, console a family who are saying goodbye, stay calm during emergencies and diffuse tension in difficult situations.

They also need to be the ultimate multi-talker; dealing with queries from both clients and vets, answering the phone, handing out medications, taking payments and generally keeping the whole show on the road.

The Veterinary Receptionist!

They are also a trusted face and confidant for our clients.

Often pet owners will have concerns or questions that they don’t want to ‘bother’ the vet or nurse with or, during the course of a good chat (vet receptionists are very good at that!), issues will come up. Sometimes these can be passed to clinical staff but often a knowledgable receptionist is more than capable of helping.

One area where this is particularly true is preventive health care and parasite control.

A good knowledge of these subjects is just another string to the bow of the veterinary receptionist and while the final decision on prescribing lies with the vet, a thorough explanation of why parasite control is important from the desk, will really help to ensure pets are properly protected.

Also, it can be really difficult for clinical staff to have the time to fully discuss a program of preventative health care, even in annual check-ups, and make sure pet parents know why it is important.

Whereas on the desk, the staff can chat (and commiserate!) about Tabby’s hunting habits or Deefa’s predilection for hoovering under hedges! They can also talk through the different products available and help the client to chose which would be best for their pet and family.

You don’t need to be a fast food automaton (“Would you like fries with that?!”) but a simple ‘Do you need any flea or worming treatments while you are here?’ or, ‘When was Tabby last wormed?’ can start a conversation and often clients are often more happy to engage and grateful you took the time to help.

A friendly face, an chatty personality, an animal lover, a organiser extraordinaire, a memory like an elephant and just a spot of fierceness to keep everyone on their toes!

The veterinary receptionist is a rare but powerful beast and we are all extremely lucky to have them!

Occasionally, if you are very lucky, your clinic’s receptionist may be furry, as well as fabulous!

This is a sponsored blog for Elanco Animal Health and their ‘WormWise’ campaign but all the opinions in it are my own!

If you enjoyed this blog, check out ‘My Pet Doesn’t Have Worms!’ and ‘How To Avoid A Tapeworm Takeover!’

You can follow me on Twitter; @cat_the_vet,  FaceBook;  Cat_The_Vet and Instagram, Cat The Vet

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