Posted

July 3, 2020

As we hope you and your pets are keeping healthy during this unprecedented time, we must all remember that we are still in the midst of a global pandemic. Bucks County has entered the “green” phase of reopening but we must continue to follow the protocols we have set in place at the hospital, both for your safety and the safety of our staff. Unfortunately, “green” is not a return to life as we knew it and probably won’t be for a long time. On a positive note, we are now able to begin resuming some routine care and elective procedures. This is great news but we need to insure that we can continue to expand our services for your pets SAFELY.

From the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, our singular focus has been on keeping our clients and staff as safe as possible while providing pet care within the guidelines established by PA and the AVMA. Unfortunately this meant increasing distance from each other. We closed the hospital to human visitors and maintained our normal hours of operation by splitting our staff into two teams to minimize potential risk and exposure for all.

This hasn’t been easy and is a disruption for all. If you’ve had a sick pet in the past 3 months, you have already experienced our busy phone lines, delayed call backs and difficulty scheduling appointments but you have also witnessed our staff’s willingness to go above and beyond to care for your pet, communicate with you and keep you and your family safe.

As we add back routine appointments and services, our first priority must be to our sick and injured patients but we are working hard to facilitate the back log of routine care. We simply ask for your continued patience and support.

Curbside service is the new normal and there are a few things you can do to help:

  • Please reschedule when you can’t keep an appointment. On a recent day we had 3 No Shows and a long list of patients who could have filled those appointments.
  • Bring a fully charged cellphone so the doctor can contact you during the exam. If you don’t have a cellphone please tell us when the appointment is scheduled.
  • Schedule routine appointments well in advance. We are currently booking annual wellness appointments three weeks out.
  • Allow additional time for medication and food refills to allow for delivery delays whenever possible.
  • All clients are REQUIRED TO WEAR MASKS. You will not be served if you don’t have a face covering and will need to make a new appointment.
  • The doctors and staff of Newtown Vet are doing their very best to accommodate everyone, but we really do need your help, understanding and patience.

We are in this together and will get through it, together.

April 22, 2020

The CDC posted an article today about two pet cats in New York that tested positive for COVID-19. This is the first time that pets have tested positive in the US and there is still much to understand about these cases and the pandemic.

It is important to know that they have NOT changed the safety recommendations for our pets. At this time there is no evidence that pets play a role in spreading the COVID-19 virus in the US.

For the complete CDC article, click on the link below:

https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2020/s0422-covid-19-cats-NYC.html

Our commitment to you is to share as much information about the pandemic and the safety of your family as possible. If we become aware of further updates we will share them.

April 19, 2020

In compliance with Governor Wolf’s new directive about masks for everyone, we are asking for your support when visiting Newtown Vet. Everyone interacting with staff (admitting a patient, dropping off for an urgent visit or picking up medication/food) must have face covering. We realize this is one more thing we are all dealing with but it helps to keep everyone a little safer and it is the right thing to do.

Our staff is also stepping up our use of masks and gloves while limiting use of medical grade PPE. You will see all staff wearing gloves and masks outside, but we are also wearing them inside the hospital. We have already implemented the following that is now part of this new directive:

  • Newtown Vet has been closed to all non-essential visitors since March 23rd
  • Curbside concierge for delivery of food & medications directly to your car
  • All Newtown Vet staff takes their temperature when arriving for work as a precaution – Gov Wolf mandated this for positive COVID-19 cases only
  • Staggered start/end times
  • Room for breaks/meals that enables social distancing – our break room has been reconfigured to better enable social distancing

We will continue to reach out if there are changes to our operating hours or hospital protocols. Please know that we are working hard to provide medical care while conserving PPE and taking the best care of our patients.

We are here if you need us!

April 8, 2020

We hope this message finds you social distancing and safe & healthy at home. We continue to operate at regular hours, with a reduced staff, to see sick patients, refill medications & food and help you navigate this challenging time. Our boarding facility remains closed. We are here for you, so please contact us if the need arises.

  • To extend social distancing for clients & pets visiting the hospital, we have added a new K9 Corral for all dogs coming in. Your admitting tech will give you more details but it’s a way to admit your dog without touching a tech and vice versa. All cats must be in a carrier before being admitted.
  • We’ve received a few questions about the Tiger who recently tested positive for corona virus at the Bronx Zoo as well as about any risk from our own pets. Public health officials believe this tiger became sick after being exposed to a zoo employee who was actively shedding virus. This investigation is ongoing.
    • Infectious disease experts and multiple international and domestic human and animal health organizations continue to agree there is no evidence at this point to indicate that, under natural conditions, pets can spread COVID-19 to people. Pets can have other types of coronaviruses that can make them sick, like canine and feline coronaviruses. These viruses cannot infect people and are not related to the current COVID-19 outbreak.
    • The CDC has not received any reports of pets becoming sick with COVID-19 in the US. To date, there is no evidence that pets can spread the virus to people.
      • It is still recommended that people sick with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus.
      • At this time, the testing of animals for COVID-19 is NOT recommended.
      • The best practice is to wipe down leads, carriers and gear with a household cleaner when used in a public setting.

For more information, please check the CDC or AVMA websites.

Sources:

https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/animal-health-and-welfare/covid-19

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/animals.html

  • We are still receiving shipments from most of our vendors (some mildly delayed) and are happy to fill your pet’s prescriptions for you for pick up. We are accepting payment via phone and once you have arrived, our Curb Side Concierge service will gladly bring what you need to your car. For home delivery without the need for a written prescription or a trip to Newtown Vet, please visit our competitively priced online pharmacy at: http://newtownvethospital.vetsourceweb.com/site/view/HomeDelivery.pml

Lastly, a special thank you to all of the clients who have sent care packages our way over the last few weeks. These days can be long and we appreciate the kindness!

Happy Easter and Passover,

Stay safe & we hope to see all of you soon!

March 21, 2020

To our valued clients: 

This is a challenging time for all of us! The good news is that veterinary services are deemed “essential” which will allow us to remain open as long as we have healthy staff available. Veterinarians are the only profession who take an oath to serve and protect the well being of both pets and humans. We have implemented new protocols and will continue to modify them in order to minimize the risk to all humans involved while doing our best to take care of the patients we all love so dearly. To date, we have no members of the Newtown Vet team or their families who have symptoms of or confirmed Corona virus. We hope to keep it that way for as long as possible.  

At this time we will maintain our normal hours of operation but everything about how we operate has been changed to help protect you, your human family, our staff and their families. Following the social distancing guidelines while caring for house pets is challenging but we are taking actions to observe all state and federal guidelines and regulations as closely as possible. To that end we have divided our staff to limit the number of people in the building on any given day and to limit cross contamination if/when someone is exposed.  

The most important things for you to know:

  • There is no evidence that pets can contract Corona virus but we assume they could potentially carry the virus on their fur, collar or leash so you should limit your pet’s exposure the same as you are limiting your own
  • All staff members have their temperature taken prior to starting their shift and throughout the day. No one will work with a fever
  • We will do everything in our power to care for your sick or injured pet

Important changes to our process/protocols:

  • Based on state orders all elective surgeries will be postponed at least 1 month (this includes puppy/kitten spay and neuter, grade 1 dental/oral health assessment, lumps and bumps unless considered malignant) 
  • Also based on state order, well visits and vaccines will be postponed at least 1 month (Rabies vaccines should be kept current and puppy/kitten vaccine series already initiated and time sensitive. Others can wait.
  • Sick visits will continue to be seen spread out through our normal hours but they will be seen by the doctor available at the time.
  • All appointments will be confirmed with a time, including surgery pick ups. Until we are able to return to a normal schedule we can not guarantee that your pet will be seen by a specific doctor. 
  • No clients, vendors, delivery people will be allowed inside the hospital
  • All clients will remain in their vehicles and if outside their vehicle they must observe social distancing recommendations. Please call us when you arrive.
  • All dogs must be on a secure leash and all cats must be in a carrier (no exceptions) so that staff can meet you at your vehicle to bring just your pet into the hospital. 
  • Medical history will be taken over the phone
  • Your pet will be examined by the doctor and the doctor will call you on the phone to discuss their findings and recommendations.
  • Your pet will be returned to you and your invoice processed (please bring credit card or debit card)
  • We are looking into possible telemedicine formats that might assist us in caring for your pets from a distance if needed. 

We are accepting refills for medications and food for pick up but many of the deliveries are taking an extra day or two.  As usual, we will call you when your order arrives.  This may be a good time to look at our online pharmacy.  The prescription process is electronic (no paper prescription to pick up) and the supplies are shipped directly to your home. 

The Newtown Veterinary Hospital has been serving the people of Newtown and the surrounding communities since the 1930’s and we will continue to do so to the best of our ability while keeping all of our staff employed and doing everything in our power to keep them and our clients safe. We greatly appreciate your patience, understanding and patronage during these difficult times. 

 Sincerely,

The Doctors and Staff