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Small Animal Medicine and Surgery Internship

Objectives | Prerequisites | Employment and Benefits | Advisors and Mentoring | Clinical Service Responsibilities | Emergency Duty | Teaching Responsibilities | Educational Opportunities | Monthly Meeting | Evaluations |


The internship program is designed to provide successful candidates with a broad, but intensive learning experience in various areas of small animal medicine and surgery. The program is designed to prepare individuals for residency training programs, but graduates seeking advanced training and experience prior to beginning practice will also benefit. Interns should expect to advance their technical skills, clinical decision-making, ability to critically evaluate the scientific literature, and clinical teaching abilities.

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  • DVM degree from AVMA recognized institution or equivalent is required.
  • The Ohio Revised Code requires all veterinarians within the College to hold a current Ohio license to practice veterinary medicine. A limited license is sufficient for all professional activities carried on within the College. Holding a limited license restricts you to engage in the practice of veterinary medicine only to the extent necessary to fulfill your employment obligations.  Conditions of employment are contingent based upon your eligibility to obtain and maintain the minimal state requirement of a limited license. If at anytime, you lose eligibility to be licensed your employment with the university will be at risk.
  • The offer will be contingent upon the applicant reporting for duty for their internship at The Ohio State University Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences on the agreed upon start day outlined in their letter of offer.
  • Foreign applicants will only be considered if they are US citizens or permanent residents. The Ohio State University Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences cannot provide work or study visas to internship applicants.
    • Foreign applicants must have completed at least 6 weeks of instruction at an AVMA accredited institution and have at least 2 letters of recommendation from that experience. 

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Employment and Benefits

  • The Salary for the 2021-2022 year will be $35,604. Interns are classified as Clinical instructors/Faculty for payroll purposes.
  • Health insurance will be provided by through the University. This includes full medical/dental/vision insurance. Plan information will be presented during orientation and the intern will be required to choose a plan type. While health insurance through the University is not required, some form of health insurance must be obtained (i.e., through parents or spouse).
  • Leave Policy: This policy only addresses leaves of absence that are provided and administered by the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences.  Leave provided by the Dept. of VCS is a privilege and not an entitlement.  Clinical service needs (patient management, client care, referring veterinarian service, professional student education), the performance of the individual requesting leave and, for professional leave, the educational value of the meeting will be considered. All leave must be pre-approved by the Intern Program Director and, except emergent leave, taken when it has the least impact on clinical service. All leave requires the intern to fill out a Request for Leave form, which can be obtained from the Education Program Coordinator.  If leave is taken while on clinical service with primary case responsibility (i.e. emergency), it is the responsibility of the person requesting the leave to identify and arrange coverage by an appropriate replacement clinician (other intern, instructor or faculty clinician not on service at that time) so that there is no negative impact on patient management, client care and clinical education responsibilities and duties provided by the service
  • It is the responsibility of the intern to contact Intern Program Director, and the Intern Program Coordinator with the name of the person covering the shift and to note that person’s name in the appropriate place on the Request for Leave form  The Educational Program Coordinator will update the schedule and One45 so the correct service will receive the evaluation. If a service has weekend duties and the intern is requesting time off on a weekend, then the intern must fill out a Request for Leave form for those days as well.  All leave, even those in which a trade has been agreed upon, will be deducted from the interns allowed professional or personal days.  Furthermore, it is expected that the leave will be requested as far in advance as possible, but no later than 30 days prior to the first day of leave requested. See Appendix 1 for the Scheduled Leave of Absence Form for Interns.
    • Ten days of vacation are allowed during the internship year. Five working days are mandated to be taken as assigned over the Christmas holidays, plus 5 working days at the intern’s discretion. Vacation time must be arranged at least 30 days in advance, and is expected to be taken when the intern has been assigned to an elective rotation. Vacation is not allowed on the last day of the internship.
    • Professional days for interviewing or conference attendance are allowed. Current policy allows for up to 5 days of professional leave. Professional leave time may not be taken for vacation.
    • Vacation and professional leave must be arranged in advance with both the Intern Program Director and the Service Chief of the rotation affected by the leave.
    • Vacation time and professional leave forms must be signed by the Service Chief of the rotation and the Intern Program Director.
    • The process for requesting leave is as follows: 
      • A Request for Leave form is obtained from the Intern Hub or by emailing the Education Program Coordinator and the intern will fill out the dates requested off, note if the time off is personal or professional, and note if a trade is required or not.
      • The intern will obtain verbal or email approval from the Service Chief of the Rotation and inquire as to the feasibility of taking said day off.  The Service Chief is under no obligation to allow the time off if doing so will impact clinical service or patient care. 
      • If the Service Chief allows the leave, the intern will email the completed form to the Education Program Coordinator, who will send via DocuSign for approval signatures of the Service Chief of the rotation and the Intern Director.
      • The fully signed, approved Request for Leave will be emailed to the Intern Program Director, the Service Chief of the rotation and the intern. 
    • It is the responsibility of the intern to ensure proper procedures are followed prior to any leave and that they limit leave days to within the designated allowable amounts.  Failing to submit the proper paperwork (Request for Leave form) and limiting leave to the allowable amounts is in violation of intern policy and may result in probation and/or dismissal from the program.

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Advisors and Mentoring

  • Advisor: The Intern Program Director will serve as the clinical advisor for all interns unless otherwise designated. The advisor is responsible for: coordinating the orientation, providing scheduled performance reviews, and addressing significant problems with intern performance.
  • Mentors: Interns will be assigned a faculty member from the internship committee.  The mentor is responsible for advising the intern regarding career plans or other professional development activities.  The mentor will also be responsible for performance evaluation. This faculty mentor may also be designated as the clinical advisor if agreed upon by the intern, faculty mentor and Intern Program Director.
  • Interns: Interns are responsible for notifying and working with the Intern Program Director regarding scheduling requests, seeking and incorporating performance feedback into daily activities, meeting deadlines as agreed upon with the mentor and seeking counsel and support when needed. 

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Clinical Service Responsibilities

  • Primary duties during the program include diagnosis, treatment and care of patients; timely communication to client and referring veterinarian; instruction and supervision of senior veterinary students; and timely and thorough maintenance of patient medical records. Case management will be under the guidance of the senior members of the clinical service team.
  • Interns will rotate through the following services. The times are approximate and subject to change.
    • Daytime Emergency – 6-8 weeks
    • Evening Emergency – 6-8 weeks
    • Overnight Emergency – 6-8 weeks
    • Total Emergency – 21-22 weeks
    • Critical Care Medicine – 4-6 weeks
    • Internal Medicine – 6-8 weeks
    • Soft Tissue Surgery – 4 weeks
    • Orthopedic Surgery – 2 weeks
    • Electives – 6-12 weeks
    • Anesthesia – 2 weeks
    • Radiology – 2 weeks
  • The intern is expected to have primary case responsibility for the Emergency, Critical Care Medicine, Internal Medicine, and Community Practice rotations, and will have primary case responsibility while on other services at the discretion of the Service Head.
  • Interns are expected to provide medical care at a level expected in an academic tertiary care facility. If expectations are not met, the intern may be placed on probation. If satisfactory improvements are not made, the intern on probation may be dismissed. 

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Emergency Duty

  • All interns will participate in emergency receiving. This includes rotation through daytime, evening and overnight emergency rotations (also includes weekends and holidays) with primary emergency case receiving. The intern must stay in the hospital for the duration of their shift.
  • Interns on overnight emergency duty do not have clinical duties the following day.
  • Back-up system: While on weekday emergency duty, interns will have an Emergency and Critical Care faculty and/or resident present in the hospital until 8 or 10PM, and a formal back-up call system for residents and faculty in all specialties. The intern is expected to utilize this back-up system when appropriate, especially during the first few months of internship. 

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Teaching Responsibilities

  • Clinical teaching: While formal teaching is not required, all interns are expected to participate in clinical teaching, including case discussions with the primary student(s) or group discussion.
  • Rounds: Interns are expected to attend rounds as designated by the Service Chief.
  • Seminars: Interns will present one case conference in Clinical Pathology Conference (CPC) and one case in Intern Communication (COMS) rounds.

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Educational Opportunities

  • Intern Lecture Series: Attendance is required. This lecture series will cover pathophysiology and management of common medical problems.
  • Attendance is required at monthly Intern COMS rounds. 
  • Attendance at CPC is required when interns are in the following rotations:  internal medicine, cardiology, neurology, oncology, emergency (daytime ER, overnight ER), radiation oncology, behavior, community practice and clinical pathology.
  • Journal clubs are offered by most services. Attendance at a journal club in the intern’s area of interest is strongly encouraged.
  • External (off-site) rotations are not available.

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Monthly Meeting (1st Friday of the Month)

  • Meet with Emergency and Critical Care Section Head in order to discuss issues and concerns on emergency and critical care clinical rotations, as well as review any changes to policy and procedures for the Emergency Service and the VMC in general.

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  • Formal performance reviews are given at 1, 4 and 8 months of the program.
  • Online evaluations through One45 are required to be provided by each service at the end of each rotation.

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Updated 8/24/2021