Hampton Veterinary Hospital veterinarian holding dog patient

Pets are part of our families, and we want the best for them. But with so many pet veterinary clinics available, how can you know what’s best regarding your pet’s medical care?

If you’re considering a new veterinarian for your pet, it’s important to know what AAHA-accredited hospitals have to offer.

What Is the AAHA?

The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of pets and people.

The organization was established in 1933 when a group of veterinarians decided that there was a need for an association like this. They started by creating standards for care that would help animal hospitals across the country provide better service to their clients.

How Do Pet Hospitals Become AAHA-accredited?

Animal hospitals and clinics that seek accreditation from the American Animal Hospital Association must meet a long list of requirements. These include:

  • A minimum staffing level, including at least one full-time veterinarian with hospital privileges, one full-time veterinary technician, and one part-time veterinary technician.
  • A written policy for responding to emergencies twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
  • A written policy on handling medical records and client communication.
  • Client education services.
  • Quality control programs.
  • Advanced medical equipment and technology.
  • Expertise in treating specific conditions, such as orthopedic surgery and oncology.
  • Staff training and continuing education.
  • Anesthesia monitoring equipment.

Additionally, AAHA standards require an on-site pharmacy where medications can be dispensed.

The facility must have a cleanliness rating of at least 80 percent in each category that AAHA inspectors evaluate. This includes corridors, waiting rooms, exam rooms, treatment rooms, surgery suites, and kennels or catteries.

What Does It Mean When AAHA Accredits a Pet Hospital?

When you visit an AAHA-accredited hospital, you can be confident that your pet will receive high-quality care from veterinarians who’ve gone above and beyond to meet the stringent training standards the organization sets. 

How Do Animal Hospitals Maintain AAHA Accreditation?

At least once every three years, AAHA sends in unannounced inspectors to evaluate an accredited practice. These inspectors are not employees of the organization—they’re volunteers who’ve undergone rigorous training and testing. They must be practicing veterinarians with at least five years of experience working in an AAHA-accredited hospital before being accepted as an inspector.

The purpose of these inspections is to ensure that AAHA-accredited practices continually meet specific standards for quality care and service.

What Are the Advantages of Using an AAHA-Accredited Animal Hospital?

AAHA-Accredited Hospitals:

  • Provide high-quality care for your pet.
  • Encourage preventive health care that can prevent or control disease.
  • Promote wellness through routine examinations and vaccinations.
  • Use a comprehensive approach for diagnosing illnesses and conditions.
  • Have access to the latest modern technology and equipment to provide the best possible care for your pet.

Hampton Veterinary Hospital is a well-established, AAHA-accredited practice. Our team prides itself on forming long-lasting relationships with our clients and their pets.

Your pet deserves the best medical care possible at a facility with comprehensive healthcare practices. Call us at (603) 926-7978 if you have any questions or to schedule an appointment. We’re always ready to help you and your pet.