Katerina Clarke makes the veterinary profession more personal, makes it more James Herriot-ish once more. She has a mobile veterinary clinic called Point of Care located in the Isle of Man. “The best tip to vets is to try to find a balance between work and life outside of the work, regardless how you decided to build up your own clinic”, Katerina Clarke says.
Dogs, cats, cows, sheep, goats…
“Point of Care is a mixed practice. My typical day would involve pets such as dogs and cats, vaccinations and treatment of different ailments, and also some large animal work, perhaps a lame cow, horse, sheep or goat. I have on average six to eight customers a day, but that can easily double in busy times”, she says.
Typically, her working hours are 9.30am to 5 pm. Dr. Clarke also provides her own 24/7 coverage for her customers. The Isle of Man is a small island, so her typical daily mileage averages around 100 miles (150km).
Dr. Clarke works on her own at the moment and she does have a part-time veterinary nurse/savior to help with the operations and paperwork overload.
“I have full books and at the moment about a 3-month waiting list for new customers to register”, she says. There are another 4 practices on the island, which have between two to seven vets.
Clients appreciate a mobile clinic
“My clients appreciate a mobile clinic as most of them have some kind of trouble to either get themselves to the vet or their pet. Clients don’t have a suitable transport, or they are too busy with a family or work to spend it in a waiting room or the pets are petrified of the vet, car or combination of all above”, Dr. Clarke says.
Running a mobile clinic is not typical way of working in GB or Ireland; it is still more the exception than the rule to travel to the patients’ homes, although most vets are offering the service in certain circumstances eg. euthanasia.
The best aspects of a mobile clinic for Katerina are probably arranging time as it suits her and her clients, working with the clients directly, rather than for a practice, and better communication when you cut out the middle man.
“Typically, the call would be answered by a receptionist who may then pass the message on to the vet, who then needs to find the time to answer or remember the client. I am on the other end of the phone; I remember most of my clients and their pets by name, so it shows a personal touch and care. The biggest challenge is to find the balance between work and family. I am still working on it”, Dr. Clarke laughs.
Satisfied with simplicity of Provet Cloud
When the vet is mobile, the veterinary practice management solutions have to be mobile, too. Katerina Clarke has used Provet Cloud since very beginning, since it has been in beta testing.
“I am very satisfied with it. The best feature is the simplicity. You are not overloaded with too many windows opened at the same time from the set-up of client to accounts. The easy access to lists of unpaid invoices comes to mind in order to keep an eye on the cash flow. I worked with server based management systems before and this is just so much more suitable to my needs. I just like it”, she says.
She also likes that Provet Cloud is improved every month and that client suggestions are taken seriously, so you feel like you are part of the team and the system is, in a way, built to your needs.