Veterinary surgeon and veterinary Technician: a winning team

An interview with Doctor Chiara Chiaffredo, Veterinary Surgeon, CCRP, Owner of the CVF physiotherapy vet centre and Senior President of SIRIMSVET (Italian Veterinary Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine Company)

The way was paved by the Anglo-Saxon world which back in the day had understood the need to flank the figure of Veterinary Surgeon with a professional capable of assisting and supporting him/her during daily practice, shouldering a series of commitments that were taking away time from carrying out his/her activities. This is how the profession of Veterinary Technician was born: a multi-tasking position with transversal skills which thanks to ad-hoc training paths providing specific knowledge of pets, equines and exotic species, has also become specialised.

Where on the other side of the Channel therefore, the position of Veterinary Technician has a lengthy pedigree, in Italy it landed about ten years ago, with an out-and-out boom over the past 3-4 years. 
This is confirmed by Doctor Chiara Chiaffredo, a Veterinary Surgeon specialised in physiotherapy and sports medicine.

Over the past few years, the Veterinary Technician has become ever-more frequent in outpatients and clinics: what is his/her role?
It is a satellite position to the Veterinary Surgeon who entrusts a series of tasks to support him/her in daily practice. Thanks to this help, the Vet can devote more time to the patient, without having to deal with the administration, management, operational problems which generally concern every facility. Some call him/her nurse and others auxiliary: personally, I think that assistant is the correct term.

An assistant who is assigned several tasks…
Precisely. For example, a Veterinary Technician can carry out administrative tasks or manage the clinic’s spaces, take care of the patient during admission or for specific therapies decided by the Vet, flank the latter during surgery, deal with the hygiene and cleaning of the instruments as well as of the common spaces. It is therefore a professional figure called upon to intervene in several situations.

Is there a risk of overlapping the two positions of Veterinary Surgeon and Veterinary Technician?
The borderline between the two positions can be a narrow one, but if the roles are defined precisely and the Veterinary Surgeon assigns precise tasks to the assistant, there is no interference. On the contrary, a virtuous circle whose complementarity is its strength benefits the patient and the peace of mind of the owner who finds a professional Technician able to devote personal care and attention to the animal.

Does this complementarity between Vet and Technician also concern the use of instrumental therapies, laser therapy in primis?
It is always a question of teamwork: the Veterinary Surgeon establishes the therapy and instructs the Veterinary Technician in order for it to be applied correctly. Although this task may seem to be strictly operational, it is no less worthwhile. On the contrary, correctly learning how to best use a laser for example, is a decisive factor for achieving the desired result.


This was well understood by the participants in the Course organised by ATAV (Association of Auxiliary Veterinary Technicians) which focused precisely on laser therapy…
Their enthusiasm, the involvement and proactivity they showed during the course, make me lean towards a “yes”, as does the feedback collected at the end of the presentation of MLS® Laser Therapy and of the M-VET device. Once again, the complementarity between my speech, strictly clinical, and the one by the company, more scientific, was a winning combination, both in terms of clarity and of involvement. Despite some initial reluctance, immediately dispelled.

Of what type?
The theoretical aspect, based on concepts of physics, generally alarms the public, but the explanations given by Giulia Randazzo, ASA Product Specialist, were very easy to understand and to “handle”. 
Exactly like the M-VET device, of which the course participants appreciated precisely the ease of use and intuitiveness which ensure it is ‘smart’ even for those who are just at the beginning. Provided they are correctly trained.