UF Hospital, Referral Services Win AAHA Accreditation

The designation reflects “the high level of veterinary expertise we offer to pet owners and to the referring veterinary community,” a university official says.

University of Florida veterinary student Heather Jimenez with a patient in the Small Animal Hospital.

Sarah Carey/UF

The University of Florida has joined more than two dozen other veterinary schools in earning accreditation from the American Animal Hospital Association.

The designation is awarded to veterinary practices across the United States and Canada that meet about 900 standards in areas ranging from pain management and cleanliness to anesthesiology and continuing education.

Florida received separate accreditation of its Small Animal Hospital and referral practice, the university reported Monday.

AAHA-accredited referral hospitals must employ a board-certified veterinarian in each area of expertise. Florida achieved recognition in nine specialties: ophthalmology, emergency and critical care, cardiology, internal medicine, dermatology, zoological medicine, neurology, surgery and oncology.

“We are so pleased to have reached this important milestone, which is a reflection of the high level of veterinary expertise we offer to pet owners and to the referring veterinary community,” said Dana Zimmel, DVM, Dipl. ACVIM, Dipl. ABVP, the associate dean for clinical services and chief medical officer at the College of Veterinary Medicine.

From 12 to 15 percent of veterinary practices hold AAHA accreditation, which is subject to review and renewal every few years. Other recent honorees include Crowfoot Veterinary Hospital in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and Fort Carson Veterinary Center in Fort Carson, Colo.

“We applaud the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine on vigilantly keeping up with advancements in veterinary medicine and adhering to high standards of veterinary excellence,” said AAHA’s CEO, Michael Cavanaugh, DVM, Dipl. ABVP.

Twenty-three university veterinary hospitals possess traditional AAHA accreditation.

Besides Florida, the U.S. schools include the University of California, Davis; Colorado State University; University of Illinois; Iowa State University; Louisiana State University; Michigan State University; University of Minnesota; Mississippi State University; University of Missouri; North Carolina State University; Ohio State University; Oklahoma State University; University of Pennsylvania; Purdue University; Ross University; Tuskegee University; University of Wisconsin; Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine; and Washington State University. In Canada, the honorees are the University of Guelph, University of Montreal and University of Saskatchewan.

In addition to Florida, referral practices are accredited at Colorado State University, Oregon State University, Texas A&M University, the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Tennessee.

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