Veterinary Wellness Resources

NOTE:  The information contained in these self help documents is not to be used as a substitute for professional care.  Neither the authors nor the Washington State Veterinary Medical Association (WSVMA) assume liability for injury incurred by following the information presented in these self-help documents.

I Had a Black Dog:

Recently, an animated YouTube video addressing depression circulated on Facebook. I had a Black Dog, His Name Was Depression, created by the World Health Organization is a creative an engaging effort to demystify and destigmatize depression that also includes easy to adopt self-care tips, as well as recommendations for gaining support.

The “Black Dog” theme used to illustrate depression seems oddly appropriate for those of us in veterinary medicine, and, if nothing else, the creativity and narrator’s pleasant voice make this worth viewing. Sometimes, the dark of winter, press of holiday busy-ness or longing for deceased loved ones can reveal depressive symptoms or aggravate existing depression.

We will all be touched by depression in one way or another…someone we know, someone we work with, a client, ourselves. I Had a Black Dog, His Name Was Depression is a way to learn more. Take a look. Start a conversation. Share the video. Give yourself and those you care for the gift of understanding.

As WSVMA’s holiday gift to you, here are some links to websites that offer proven methods for self-care that anyone’s schedule can accommodate:

UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center

Gratitude-Emmons Lab University of Davis

Yale School of Medicine Therapeutic Neuroscience Clinic

 

Resources

Washington Physicians Health Program (WPHP) - To facilitate the rehabilitation of veterinarians who have physical or mental conditions that could compromise public safety and to monitor their recovery.

Washington Health Professional Services (WHPS) - A confidential program for chemically impaired health professionals, including licensed veterinary technicians and registered veterinary medication clerks. WHPS ensures early entry into recovery for the impaired practitioner while providing maximal protection of the public safety by identifying, assessing, and monitoring healthcare professionals and attracting the professional on a self-referral basis.

Downloadable informational PowerPoint Presentations. Use these tools to recognize and respond to the six behavioral indicators of impairment.

WPHP Brochure: Program overview and resources.

Washington Physicians Health Program (WPHP) - Resource Page.
 

Suicide Prevention

If you or someone you know is thinking of committing suicide, click here.

Resources:

Suicide: Conspiracy of Silence - by Carrie La Jeunesse, DVM, CT, CCFE

Veterinarians’ Risk for Addictive Illness and Suicide - report from Washington Physicians Health Program

Physician Depression and Suicide – article from Washington Physicians Health Program

What are the signs and symptoms of depression? The National Institute of Mental Health offers resources on depression, treatment options and where to go for help.
 

Helpful Websites

Washington Physicians Health Program (WPHP) - To facilitate the rehabilitation of healthcare practitioners who have physical or mental conditions that could compromise public safety and to monitor their recovery.

Washington Physicians Health Program (WPHP) - Resource Page.

WSU College of Veterinary Medicine Counseling & Wellness Services - Wellness resources for issues surrounding doctors and students.

Everyday Health.com - Find health resources and personalized health tools.

WebMD - The leading source for trustworthy and timely health and medical news and information.

My Family Health Portrait  - Helps document family health history to track diseases that may be hereditary.

This Emotional Life - A multi-year campaign to foster awareness, connections and solutions around emotional wellness.

American Heart Association: Go Red for Women Campaign

Anthrozoology.org - Pet loss, grief, euthanasia, thanatology

2 minute video from Mayo Clinic - Learn the new CPR method that may help you save someone's life.
 

Recommended Reading List

Purchase books from the WSVMA Store and save money!  

Compassion Fatigue in the Animal-Care Community, Humane Society of the United States 

Kitchen Table Wisdom: Stories That Heal, by Rachel Remen, MD

The Five Things We Cannot Change and the Happiness We Find in Embracing Them, by David Richo

Helpful Articles

How Can I tell if a Provider is Chemically Impaired?- Charles Meredith, MD,  Washington Physicians Health Program

And Then, the Silence Was Fatal! Mandatory Reporting for Healthcare Practitioners - Mick Oreskovich, MD

German study: Widespread Stress Found Among Veterinarians

A Disturbing Trend: Veterinary Cyber Bullying Suzanne Smither, Veterinary Team Brief, April 2014

Compassion Fatigue: Healing the Healer

Would you recognize a stroke? If someone experienced a sudden stroke, would you recognize it and know what to do? Make a commitment to learn the stroke warning signs and where stroke hospitals exist in your area.

Health Care Reform Timeline

Addiction in the Practice: Is it time to do something about it? - AAHA Trends Magazine, April 2013

Is There Hope? Exclusive addiction survey results from AAHA - AAHA Trends Magazine, May 2013

Workplace Violence: Issues in Response - Federal Bureau of Investigation

NOTE:  The information contained in these self help documents is not to be used as a substitute for professional care.  Neither the authors nor the Washington State Veterinary Medical Association (WSVMA) assume liability for injury incurred by following the information presented in these self-help documents.

 

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