End-of-the-day surgery releases can bring chaos and confusion to even the most organized veterinary teams. That's why team members at Rock Road Animal Hospital in St. Louis, Mo., developed a system to route clients through the checkout process before they're reunited with their pets.
Dr. X is running behind–again. But you don't want to interrupt him in front of the client. Here's an easy solution: Get him a pager. Shelly Hiemer, CVT, a technician at AMVET in Otsego, Minn., says her doctor chose to carry one so staff members could notify him when problems arise without interrupting. Then they developed a message system to indicate the degree of emergency. For example, if the team pages the doctor with number 33, he has 10 minutes to wrap up and get to the next client. Number 66 means he only has five minutes, and 99 means it's an emergency.