Invoering van een gezondheids- en welzijnsprogramma voor paarden; implementatie binnen de paardenpraktijk op basis van klantoverwegingen
Kralingen, M.R. van
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Clients considerations regarding introducing an equine health and wellness program in veterinary practice. Introduction Equine veterinarians spend a lot of their time on the road, travelling from one patient to another. Many of them feel they have no control over their agenda and are driven by customer demand. This often results in an inefficiently run practice with not enough working hours accounted for. The introduction of an equine health and wellness program could be a good tool for better time management in equine practice since more convenient timetables and routes can be made in advance. This study tries to gauge client interest in an equine health and wellness program. Material and Method A questionnaire was send to 960 horse owners of a private equine practice in the Netherlands. The questionnaire consisted of questions regarding equine veterinary services provided and veterinary expenses. Also their interest in different templates of equine health and wellness programs was gauged. Results Twenty-six percent of the horse owners returned the questionnaire. Equine veterinary costs average €246,- (STDEV € 343,-). According to the clients most performed skills by the equine veterinarians are: vaccinations, dental care, parasite control and lameness examination. Seventy-seven percent of the horse owners would like to participate in an equine health and wellness program or is considering it. This program should include vaccinations, dental care, parasite control and lameness checkups, but also blood sampling, nutritional advice and routine clinical check-ups. Owners want access to all of these findings in a digital or paper file and are willing to spend € 123,- (STDEV € 120,-) for a simple version up to € 198,- ( STDEV € 110,-) for an extended program. Conclusion Owners of this equine clinic are very much interested in an equine health and wellness program. The challenge for this equine practice is to develop a program that meets client expectations and fits into their budget. Once in place it can be a tool for efficient time management and enhance the profitability of this equine practice.