What Are The Veterinary Technician Certifications In The US?

What are the regulations for veterinary technicians?

This is an excerpt from a longer article about Registered Veterinary Technicians.

By Allison Salonko.

Allison is a Veterinary Technician in the state of Indiana. She graduated from International Business College and Vet Tech Institute of Indianapolis with a degree in Animal Science and Technology in 2011.

Affiliate Disclosure

This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn a commission from qualifying purchases made through these links. This is at no extra cost to you.

A registered veterinary technician (RVT) can also be called a CVT (certified veterinary technician) or LVT (licensed veterinary technician).

They are all the same thing, just called something different depending on what state they practice in.

There are actually very minor differences in the R vs L vs C but they are all essentially the same idea.

Unlike a Registered Nurse (RN), which is the same thing no matter what state you live and practice in, a technician is different thanks to the US government lacking in federal standardization.

Many professional career fields, especially those that work in medical (human or animal) are federally governed, meaning that there is a general set of rules that apply to the entire field, no matter what state they practice in.

An example is human medicine and how there are specific rules and regulations for all doctors, nurses, medical assistants, etc.

In veterinary medicine, things are a little different. Veterinarians are governed federally and have several others like the DEA, USDA etc that they must follow the rules and regulations of as well.

All veterinarians in the US are called DVMs (Doctor of Veterinary Medicine) and as pointed out earlier, there are three different ways to be a credentialed veterinary technician in America.

This tells you that there is no solid federalized certification, licensing or registration for vet techs. Actually a bummer.

The fact that there is no US wide federalization of the vet tech position makes it nearly impossible for there to be a standardized salary for this particular career.

It also DEVALUES the veterinary technician role.

There are only 14 states in the US that actually recognize veterinary technicians as a RVT/LVT/CVT.

This is a huge problem.

It doesn’t hold veterinarians and practice owners to a standard of employing registered techs, meaning that they can bring anyone off the streets and teach them how to be a ‘technician’ (really they’re an assistant but still call them techs).

Even if you work in a state that does recognize the RVT’s, clinic owners can still just choose to hire on-the-job trained individuals instead of those that are professionally taught.

If the government made it to where a veterinary clinic had to have registered, certified or licensed technicians working under them then it would mean a higher and more consistent salary for the underpaid and undervalued techs.

Continue reading the article.

Photo by J C.

Leave a Comment