Merck-Henry Schein Study: Equine Veterinary Business Practices Segment Released

Merck Animal Health and Henry Schein Animal Health, together with the American Association of Equine Practitioners, have released the Business Practices segment of the National Equine Veterinary Economic Study.

The study was conducted by Edward L. Blach, DVM, MS, MBA, and Andrew R. Clark, DVM, MBA.Approximately 500 members of the AAEP responded to the survey, which documented the economic situation with equine practices from 2007 through 2012.In addition, respondents provided feedback regarding the management tools used in their practices, which gives tremendous insight into opportunities that are available for practices to improve their economic situation.

Brett Whitehead, Director of Equine, Merck Animal Health, said, “This study has shed more light on business practices that have been overlooked by some veterinary practitioners. In some instances, making immediate changes will equate to quick wins for the clinic and its customers.”

“This study tells us a great deal about the issues facing equine practitioners as they navigate the challenges inherent to running a business upon which so many people and animals rely,” said Jeannie Jeffery, National Director of Equine Sales, Henry Schein Animal Health. “Through a greater understanding of their needs, we can ensure that we are offering the products, services and solutions for operating an efficient practice and delivering quality care.”

Examples (refer to Figure 1) of key findings included that almost twice as many practices had a vision or mission statement (31.3%) than had a formal budget (16.0%).In addition, only 31.3% of practices had a LOCKED pharmacy, and only 32.1% utilized inventory management.These findings represent huge opportunities for practices to immediately improve their financial situation.

Figure 1.Management tools or programs utilized routinely.

Blach (the author) stated, “We are excited to have this data, because it provides a road map that we can use to help practices improve their profitability and value.Earlier results revealed that all categories of respondents included ‘financial security’ and ‘stress’ as two of their major concerns relating to their veterinary careers.From this data, we have identified several high impact ways that we can help veterinarians improve their profitability, which in turn will increase the value of their practices.Both of these will help overcome those major areas of concern.”

To obtain complete study results, to ask questions, and to learn more, go to and “Join” the site.Results are available in the Document Library.

About Merck Animal Health

Today’s Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck Animal Health, known as MSD Animal Health outside the United States and Canada, is the global animal health business unit of Merck. Through its commitment to the Science of Healthier Animals™, Merck Animal Health offers veterinarians, farmers, pet owners and governments one of the widest range of veterinary pharmaceuticals, vaccines and health management solutions and services. Merck Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being and performance of animals. It invests extensively in dynamic and comprehensive R&D resources and a modern, global supply chain. Merck Animal Health is present in more than 50 countries, while its products are available in some 150 markets. For more information, visit or connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter at @MerckAH.

About Henry Schein Animal Health, U.S.

Henry Schein Animal Health, based in Dublin, Ohio, is the leading companion animal health distribution company in the United States, and the U.S. animal health business of Henry Schein, Inc. (NASDAQ: HSIC). The Company employs approximately 900 team members, including 300 field sales representatives and 200 telesales and customer support representatives. With 12 strategically located, state-of-the-art distribution facilities and 10 inside sales centers, the Company maintains a greater than a 99 percent order-fill ratio, accomplishing its mission of providing the right product at the right place and at the right time. Henry Schein Animal Health partners with more than 500 global suppliers to bring veterinarians the broadest selection of health care products to companion animal, equine and large animal practices, including dentistry, diagnostics, diets, equipment and supplies, nutraceuticals, oncology, orthopedics, parasiticides and pharmaceuticals. In addition, the Company helps veterinarians grow their practice with its strategic Business Solutions, including AVImark® and ImproMed® Practice Management Software, CHOICE Diagnostics™, Henry Schein® Axis-Q™, Henry Schein® Financial Services, Henry Schein® ProRepair®, Henry Schein® Rapport™,® Home Delivery, Practice Partners (HRVetResource, Intelligent Inventory®, Leadership Intelligence, Employee Resource Manual and OSHA Compliance), Privacy Edge Identity Theft Protection, Professional Development Program, SmartPak™ ColicCare™, VetPressOnline Client Communications and Veterinary Instrumentation™. For more information, visit

About is a rapidly growing online community owned jointly by Edward L. Blach, DVM, MS, MBA and Andrew R. Clark, DVM, MBA.Drs. Blach and Clark developed this site as an initiative to make high-impact practice management solutions and education available to more practices.It is intended to provide brief, high-impact management education, recommended resources, and tools that will help practices improve profitability and value.Drs. Blach and Clark are experienced veterinary practice management educators, advisors, and CEO coaches who work with CEO’s of more than 200 veterinary practices across the United States and Canada.Both Drs. Blach and Clark are former CEO’s of Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, one of the largest equine veterinary practices in the world.To contact them, go to

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