In the first study of its kind, the field of veterinary medicine is credited with having a $1.72 billion economic impact on the state of Texas.
Veterinary medicine services total $827 million annually, and when the multiplier effect – how much each dollar generates in related revenue is applied – more than $1.72 billion is produced in Texas, researchers conclude.
The 4,507 licensed veterinarians in Texas contribute to the state’s economy in a variety of sectors, including private practice, government, military, industrial and academia. The veterinary medical profession returns to the state economy an annual average estimated output of $381,629 per veterinarian in total business sales.
” Texas is the second most populous state in the nation and is a leader in many aspects of animal agriculture and companion animal care,” said H. Richard Adams, the Carl B. King Dean of Texas A&M University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
“When the tens of millions of livestock are considered along with the tens of thousands of dogs, cats, and other companion animals in our state, the full economic value of animal health and well being becomes apparent.”
Texas A&M is the only veterinary medicine college in Texas and one of the largest in the nation.
The majority of Texas’ licensed veterinary practitioners graduated from Texas A&M and are engaged in private practice which is estimated to provide more than 12,871 jobs including veterinary support staff. According to the study, the private practice sector provides more than $369 million in salaries with approximately $25 million being generated for the state government in the form of indirect business taxes.
“Although the economic impact of veterinary medicine in government, military, industrial, and academia sectors may be more difficult to quantify, the impact of the veterinary medical profession in safeguarding our nation’s food supply, protecting the public health, and educating the next generation of veterinary medical clinical and research scientists is evident in the daily lives of Texans across the state,” say the authors, three veterinary medical students who are also working toward their MBA. They include Dana R. Boehm, M. Erin Mitchell and Amber C. Williams, all of whom worked with various consultants and experts in economic impact studies.
The study was jointly sponsored by the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the Texas Veterinary Medical Association.
“Whether you eat a safe and nutritious steak, have your child immunized, or enjoy the companionship of your special pet, one thing appears to be certain: veterinarians helped to make it possible somewhere along the way,” the authors add.
The students are among the first graduates from the recently developed dual-degree DVM/MBA program at Texas A&M University involving both the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the Mays Business School.
In recognition of the vital role that veterinarians play in society and the economy, Texas A&M University established The Center for Executive Leadership in Veterinary Medical Education which was instrumental in creating the dual-degree DVM/MBA program as well as the DVM/PhD Veterinary Medical Scientist Training Program.
“Our goal in establishing the center was to provide the nation’s model leadership training program for DVM students to develop as leaders in their personal and professional lives and to benefit the communities in which they live and work,” said Dr. E. Dean Gage, executive director of the Center for Executive Leadership in Veterinary Medical Education and holder of the Charlie and Mildred Bridges Chair in Leadership.
“We are fortunate that many leaders across the veterinary medical profession, including industry and government leaders, are joining our efforts to develop the veterinary medical leaders of tomorrow through service on the center’s External Advisory Council,” added Gage.
Executives from several well-known companies and organizations provide counsel regarding the major issues facing the veterinary medical profession and will help to secure funding for the center and other College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences programs related to professional student leadership and veterinary medical education. They include Pet’s Choice, Inc., Banfield Pet Hospitals, VCA Antech Diagnositcs, Inc., Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Inc., Nestle-Purina Petcare, Inc., The Iams Company, Novartis Animal Health US, Inc., Fort Dodge Animal Health, Inc., Bayer Animal Health, Pfizer Animal Health R&D;, Merial Animal Health, Idexx Laboratories, Cargill, Inc., Brakkee Consulting, Inc., University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and the Texas Veterinary Medical Association.