03/11/20 Optimal Staffing for Shelter Medical Departments & Clinics

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Recorded On: 03/11/2020

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Do your medical staff procedures humanely meet the needs of every animal in your care? How about the humane needs of your staff? If your shelter or clinic has medical staff, then you need to attend this webinar! We will take a comprehensive look at important considerations and strategies when planning medical staffing protocols, procedures, and schedules.  This presentation will include lessons learned, from medical and HR perspectives, and will offer practical approaches including:

  • Competitive recruiting and staff retention
  • Data-driven staffing capacity
  • Alternative work schedules
  • Employee engagement and satisfaction
  • Process improvement
  • Cost-saving measures

This session is part of the Shelter Medicine series, a collaboration between the Association of Shelter Veterinarians and The Association for Animal Welfare Advancement.

This program (both live and recorded) has been approved for:

  • 1 Certified Animal Welfare Administrator continuing education credit
  • 1 CE  by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) for Texas Animal Control Officers

Audrey Lang, MS, SPHR

Sr. Vice President for Organizational Development, San Diego Humane Society

At San Diego Humane Society, Lang leads the critical work associated with Employee Engagement and building the capacity of the organization to meet its strategic goals and mission. Lang has held several leadership roles for nonprofit organizations, most recently as the Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President for American Humane where she worked in various strategic leadership roles, overseeing programs and operations.

Lang has managed Human Resources departments for state and national organizations, including the Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses (AORN) and the University of Illinois Center for the Advancement of Distance Education in Chicago. She also served in fundraising, marketing, public relations and training management roles at United Way of Minneapolis. Her areas of specialty include HR, strategic planning, operations and organizational transformation. She holds a Master of Science degree in Human Resource Management, with a concentration in International Business from Roosevelt University in Chicago and an Executive Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership from Duke University. She is SPHR certified by the Human Resource Certification Institute.


Chief Medical Officer, San Diego Humane Society

As Chief Medical Officer for San Diego Humane Society, Dr. Zarah Hedge oversees a team 15+ veterinarians who provide lifesaving specialized surgeries, progressive treatments and long-term care and rehabilitation for animal patients in the care of San Diego Humane Society. The Veterinary Medical Department offers medical examinations, vaccinations, microchipping, diagnostic testing and dental procedures. The program is also equipped to treat animals with allergies, heart problems, basic orthopedic conditions and other injuries. San Diego Humane Society also performs more than 16,000 spay and neuter procedures each year, many at low or no cost. The organization’s Center for Shelter Medicine includes a pharmacy, evaluation and treatment areas, isolation ward, surgery suite, dental suite and recovery room.

Certified veterinarians in the field of shelter medicine remain quite limited. Dr. Hedge is one of only 28 veterinarians in the world who hold the distinction of being certified in shelter medicine by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. She brings more than a decade of experience and is a graduate of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, where she was also an assistant professor after graduating. Most recently, Dr. Hedge worked as hospital director at WesternU Spay/Neuter Center in Van Nuys. She also continues to serve as a Reserve Field Veterinarian for Rural Area Veterinary Services, a program of The Fund for Animals. 

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