With the pandemic came the overwhelming need for virtual healthcare in human and veterinary industries. Now, not only is there an overwhelming need for ER and GP veterinarians, but consumers are demanding telehealth vets as well. Working from home is something novel and foreign for most practitioners, but it is becoming more commonplace in the veterinary field.
Are you working from home or plan to hire a remote vet to start or enhance your telehealth service? Studies have shown that people are more productive when working from home than in an office setting. With no commute time, better work life balance, and less distraction, WFH can benefit the remote employee as well as the practice.
Here are some things to consider with WFH veterinary employment:
- Your office space should be not only functional, but fun! Design a space that allows you to work efficiently, but also is a space you feel happy and comfortable in.
- Pick a spot where you will be most productive, out of the way and free from distraction.
- Consider placing your desk near a window for natural light.
- Have good lighting to save your eyes from straining.
- A door to close is ideal for minimizing noise and distraction.
- Storage is key. Have places to organize papers and supplies. Have your most used items at arms length away.
- Surround yourself and decorate with things you love: plants, personal pictures, candles, and artwork.
- Do not work from bed!
Determine the type of internet you will need for the best speed and quality for your job.
- Hot Spot
Having the right equipment is hugely important for your WFH success. Consider the following to make your WFH daily life efficient, comfortable, and stress-free
- Ergonomic and comfortable chair
- Appropriately sized desk
- Earbuds or hands free headset
- More than 1 monitor or screen
- Work while standing option (treadmill, standing desk)
- Mobile device to take with you on the move
Social Interaction and Connection
- WFH can be isolating. Make sure to connect with colleagues daily whether that be 1:1 coffee chats, meetings, or a quick message to ask how their day is going.
- Set time aside to make connection a priority.
- Choose a time of day when your energy is low. These interactions can often energize you.
Dress for the Day
- Although your WFH job may not require a video component, the way you dress will affect your mood and the tone of your day.
- If video appearances are a part of your day, dress for the part. You may need a scrub top or lab coat when speaking with clients.
- Do not work in pajamas.
- A routine is really important for WFH employment. It is easy to get off task and mis-use your time if you do not adhere to a routine.
- Wake up and start your day at least 1 hour before your scheduled work time.
- Write down your top 3 priorities for the day.
- Eat at similar times daily if possible.
- Have an end of day ritual. Turn off electronics, shut off lights, take a quick walk outside for 5 minutes, and breathe. This helps to turn off your brain and transition into home life.
How you schedule your day as a work from home veterinarian is dependent upon the needs of the practice, pet parents, and yourself as well as the telehealth services offered.
- Daily meetings are important for team communication and overall well-being. However, too many meetings can inhibit productivity.
- Have a meeting agenda to stay on track and use time efficiently.
- Breaks are important. It is easy to get wrapped up in the work that you forget to eat, drink, and live!
- Having scheduled breaks forces you to move your body and rest your brain.
Length of sessions
- Determine the appropriate length of time to devote to video sessions.
- A medical recheck appointment may only need 15 minutes of time, where a QOL or euthanasia planning session may require 45 minutes.
- When managing asynchronous and real-time sessions simultaneously, make sure enough time is being devoted to both.
- This may require more than 1 veterinary staff member to manage both types of communication modalities depending on how busy the service becomes.
End of day
- Make sure there is a clear stopping point at the end of day. If not, your day may continue indefinitely.
Telehealth Vet Schedule Example
Anipanion’s telehealth platform is an incredible way to add virtual healthcare for your pet parents and monetize communication. Integrating a telehealth veterinarian can build this service and increase quality of patient care, while freeing in-hospital vets to work on physical pets. Customize a telehealth vet schedule to meet your practice goals.
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