In March it will be a full year since the pandemic changed everything in our lives. While there was no way to predict all the impacts, one of the most unexpected effects is a dramatic surge in needed veterinary care. Folks adopted pets to be their quarantine companions, a huge change in how veterinary practices serve our patients and clients with curbside, along with other factors, have strained both pet owners and veterinarians. We truly understand how eager that everyone is to “get back to normal” and can’t wait for that day to come! In the meantime, here are a few reminders and updates about accessing care for your furry family members:
Curbside is mandatory per Oregon OSHA: In November, Oregon OSHA adopted temporary workplace rules for all workplaces in Oregon, including specific guidance for veterinary practices. These rules mandate curbside service and are in effect from November 16, 2020 through April 4, 2021 unless revised before then. Unfortunately we cannot make exceptions to these rules, but will keep you updated if regulations change. Click here to visit the Oregon OSHA website for more details.
All veterinary practices are overwhelmed: As we shared last summer, veterinary practices are experiencing unprecedented demand for our services. This is still the reality today, and the veterinary community continues to be overwhelmed with patients needing care to the point that some general practices have stopped taking new patients, and ER facilities are working on up to 12 hour wait times. Some ERs have even had to pause patient intake when they become so overwhelmed that they cannot provide care to non-critical cases. We know that it’s frustrating to wait longer than usual for appointments and even to receive a routine call back. We ask for your patience and to please review this blog post to prepare for accessing care and understand the reality our doctors, technicians and receptionists experience every day.
Practice kindness: As we shared last year, Frontier is a big, busy hospital and we’re accustomed to working at a fast pace and triaging emergencies on top of an already full appointment schedule, but the past year has been the most challenging time this hospital has ever been through. Many of you choose Frontier because we are locally owned and family operated. There are real people behind our face masks, charged with being essential workers for our local community. Sometimes that means making unpopular decisions and enforcing policies that may be inconvenient or frustrating, but are ultimately the right thing to do in order to keep our patients, clients and staff safe. Because we’re human, mistakes and miscommunications can happen, but know that we value your feedback and always want the opportunity to make things right. If you ever have a disappointing experience, please reach out directly to our Practice Manager Kim at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can help.
Thank you for your trust and the privilege of caring for your family members.