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Animal Health and Veterinary Practice

Alaska Veterinary Medical Association (AKVMA)

Executive Director: Pat Anderson (907-205-4272)

For information on animal health issues, member clinics, or executive officers, see the AKVMA website.

AKVMA Peer Review Committee:

The Alaska Veterinary Medical Association has established a member peer review committee should an altercation arise between you and your veterinarian. You may want to contact them at 907-563-3701 should you have a complaint about a veterinary procedure performed on your animal. Because membership in the association is not mandatory, non-members are not considered for cases. The peer committee does not have final say in cases revolving around disputes, but may be able to come to an amicable decision between you and your veterinarian.

Board of Veterinary Examiners

The board is staffed by the Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing. The board consists of four veterinarians and one public member. Board members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Legislature. The board adopts regulations to carry out laws governing veterinary practice in Alaska. It makes final licensing decisions and takes disciplinary actions against people who violate licensing laws. The board meets three times a year and offiers a public comment period at each meeting. Meeting agendas and minutes are available on the Board of Veterinary Examiners website. For additional information contat them at:

PO Box 110806
Juneau, AK 99811-0806
Phone: 907-465-2550
Fax: 907- 465-2974
Email: license@alaska.gov

State of Alaska Veterinary Handbook (PDF 459K)

USDA Accredited Veterinarians

Canadian Food Inspection Agency Requires Hard Copies of Health Certificates

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) reported to USDA’s National staff that many exporters are not presenting hard copies of health certificates at the Canadian border and are instead offering to show the health certificates on their tablets and phones. This is not acceptable for either imports or exports as a hardcopy, paper version of the endorsed health certificate must accompany all shipments.

Please note that paper hardcopy versions of the completed, digitally signed health certificate must be presented with shipments at all borders. There is no capability or allowance to use non-paper, electronic health certificates for any live animal imports or exports.

If you have any questions or need further information about exports, please contact the Tumwater Office at WA.Export.Animals@usda.gov.

Visit the USDA APHIS Veterinary Accreditation website for additional information about the accreditation program.

APHIS Updates Accredited Veterinarian Regulations

The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is updating its regulations for the accredited veterinarian program, in order to clarify program definitions.

These administrative changes will ensure the terminology in the regulation is consistent with how the terms are being used in the accreditation program. They will also ensure the regulation contains an accurate list of all the programs covered under the Animal Health Protection Act. The specific changes include:

    • Adding definitions for accreditation and authorization
    • Clarifying the definition for accredited veterinarian
    • Updating the definitions of Category I animals, Category II animals, and Official certificate, form, record, report, tag, band, or other identification
    • Replacing the term Veterinarian-in-Charge with the term Veterinary Official.

Accredited veterinarians are private veterinarians who receive additional training and are authorized to complete specific tasks and paperwork on behalf of APHIS. These include animal inspections, testing and certifications. Accredited veterinarians serve as the first line of defense in defending our country from emerging and foreign animal diseases. They also play a key role in facilitating live animal exports. This is important for producers, as it is another source of revenue. But is just as important for everyday citizens who want to bring their pets with them when traveling overseas. Neither of these can happen without health certificates. Accredited veterinarians are an important resource for APHIS, our nation’s livestock and poultry producers, and our country’s pet owners.

APHIS received five comments during the 60-day public comment period. APHIS made two slight changes in response to the comments, to make a specific term more clear and to provide greater flexibility for how a veterinarian can prove he or she is legally able to practice veterinary medicine in a given state.

The changes are effective March 26, 2020.

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