The updated Veterinary Practice Act (VPA) was signed by Governor Polis on June 8, 2022, and went into effect on August 10th, 2022. The VPA will continue for 11 years, at which time it will undergo another sunset review. The following information is a summary of several key points pertinent to veterinary technicians, and the veterinary industry as a whole. For a detailed visual timeline, keep scrolling.

Technician Regulation and Title Protection

Starting January 1, 2023, the State Board of Veterinary Medicine (SBVM) will be responsible for governing the practice of veterinary technicians. And yes, certified veterinary technicians will become registered veterinary technicians. In fact, title protection will be one of the most impactful outcomes of the new regulatory program. Starting January 1, 2024, anyone wanting to use the titles Registered Veterinary Technician, Veterinary Technician, RVT, or VT must be registered after meeting one of three different credentialing options. The credentialing options include: graduating from an AVMA-approved programs and passing the VTNE, or one of two experience-based credentialing pathways (discussed in more depth below).

CACVT has been approved by the SBVM as the credentialing entity for Colorado. This means CACVT will award applicants a credential (formerly certification) after verifying they have met the required qualifications for registration. This credential allows individuals to apply for registration with the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies, Division of Professions and Occupations. All veterinary technicians who are currently certified with CACVT (expiration date June 20, 2024) will immediately become eligible to apply for registration. It is important to know that anyone practicing as a veterinary technician must be registered by the SBVM by January 1, 2024. The details for the complete process will be available November 21, 2022.

Veterinary technicians credentialed in another state but working in Colorado will need to register with the SBVM and satisfy the requirements of the Occupational Credential Portability Program. These registration applications will be processed through the Division of Professions and Occupations. The transfer process will be available January 1, 2023. 

Non-certified veterinary technicians will fall into 1 of 3 groups:

Group 1: Have you already met the requirements of either experience-based pathway? You are eligible to apply for a credential with CACVT before 1/1/2023. Check back on November 21, 2022 for instructions! 

Group 2:  Do you plan on meeting the requirements of one of the experience-based pathways? Group 2 is eligible to apply for a provisional registration, which declares your intention to meet the requirements of one of the pathways by 12/31/27. You will have from 1/1/23 through 12/31/23 to apply for a provisional registration. Once you complete the requirements, you will have 28 days to obtain your credential from CACVT. Check back early January 2023 for instructions!

Group 3: Are you not interested in registration, but want to continue working in your current position? There is no task restriction for anyone working under the direction and supervision of a veterinarian, so you will be able to continue working in your current role. Keep in mind, you won't be able to call yourself a veterinary technician after December 31, 2023. The consequence for identifying as a veterinary technician and not registering with the state is a misdemeanor.

Visual timeline 

State Board of Veterinary Medicine

Beginning in March 2023, two veterinary technicians will be appointed by the governor from a list of applications to hold seats on the SBVM. More information about how and when to apply will be released as soon as possible for those of you who are interested.

Rabies Vaccination

Beginning August 10th, 2022, non-veterinarians will be authorized to administer rabies vaccinations in a clinic setting under direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian. In animal shelters or a setting with shelter-owned animals, rabies vaccinations can be administered under indirect supervision of a licensed veterinarian. *Please check local ordinances on rabies vaccine administration

Peer Health Assistance Program

With the Veterinary Practice Act renewal, veterinary technicians will now be included in the Peer Health Assistance Program. This program offers resources for veterinary professionals who need guidance for their physical or mental health, while ensuring everyone in the field is equipped to perform with reasonable skill and safety. The program is administered by Peer Assistance Services and is tasked with monitoring veterinary professionals who self-report in the event of conviction for a drug or alcohol related crime. PAS also provides counseling and support for veterinary professionals who are referred for treatment. Take our on-demand course today to learn more about Peer Assistance Services (and earn 1 non-medical CE hour!)!

How can you support your staff?

  1. An important way to support your veterinary technicians is financially. Registration with the state, plus the Peer Health Assistance Program, will be an additional cost coupled with credentialing fees. Not only are you supporting your technician's dedication to maintain their registration, but will join the 75.3% of employers who are already covering their technician's credentialing fees (according to 2022 Colorado veterinary technician demographics)
  2. Don't assume your technicians know this information, please forward this information to your employees or provide their work email addresses HERE to spread this important information. Thank you for your dedication towards the advancement of our profession! 
  3. Do you employ veterinary technicians credentialed in another state? They are also subject to the registration requirement discussed in the Technician Regulation and Title Protection section. Please ensure they are aware of the requirements by forwarding this information!
  4. Send them to us with any questions! 

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