The North American Veterinary Community (NAVC) concluded its 40th annual Veterinary Meeting and Expo (VMX 2023) Wednesday, Jan. 18., kicking off the new year with introductions and demonstrations of veterinary healthcare innovations. According to a press release from NAVC, a record-breaking number of over 28,000 people attended from 78 countries, representing a local economic contribution of $70.8 million. And, Goodnewsforpets.com was there once again. While VMX celebrated its 40th anniversary, Goodnewsforpets.com covered the conference for the 23rd time (including two online versions). Our editor and publisher, Lea-Ann Germinder, celebrated attending 26 in-person conferences and two pandemic conferences.
We saw plenty of new booths, visited old favorites, and learned much about Solensia, Zoetis’ new treatment for osteoarthritis in cats, from Drs. Joyce Login and Duncan Lascelles. Video link here.
We were thrilled to witness a great event on Martin Luther King Day this year. As reported previously, the NAVC joined with the nationally-recognized DEI program, BLENDVet, to host more than 20 central Florida middle school students for a new Martin Luther King Jr. “Day of Service.” This was a highlight as the event was designed to increase diversity in the veterinary profession, in which only 6.7% of veterinarians are people of color and 1.2% are Black.
“The bond between humans and animals has grown tremendously over the past 40 years, and animals are not just pets; they are family members,” said Gene O’Neill, NAVC CEO. “The reach of the veterinary industry has exponentially expanded over the past four decades, and the commitment to providing the very best healthcare to animals of all kinds has been on full display at VMX 2023, from record attendance, education sessions, exhibits and the incredible excitement we see everywhere.”
With over 50% more attendees than previous highs, VMX 2023 shattered attendance records, including over 9,500 first-time attendees. VMX 2023 included more than 1,300 hours of continuing education in both virtual and on-site sessions.
“Over the last 40 years, we have seen tremendous change in the veterinary industry. Animals are not only living longer, but they are also living better lives. Dogs live almost twice as long as they did 40 years ago,” said Dr. Dana Varble, NAVC Chief Veterinary Officer. “A longer lifespan comes with diseases like cancer, arthritis, and diabetes. As we have seen over the course of VMX 2023, there are incredible breakthroughs today with new medications designed specifically for cats, dogs, horses, and other species, as well as new medical devices to improve their healthspan and increase lifespan. The more exciting trends this year are non-invasive ways to do surgery, diagnose skin cancer and even understand pain.”
During VMX 2023, NAVC announced a new sustainability initiative and a new, community-based live event program that focuses on topics and trends of interest in local veterinary communities across the country. These events will aim to tackle different needs of the veterinary industry, including patient treatment and the needs of specific members of the veterinary team. Registration for VMX 2024 is now open. The NAVC announced that the special $125 anniversary registration pricing would be extended through VMX 2024 during early bird registration. For more information about VMX 2024, visit this link.
Manolita Moore, formerly of VMX, is now CEO and Co-Founder of Pet Zone360 and COO of Simulocity. We share a previous interview with her during her time at VMX for the launch of VMX Virtual in celebration of VMX’s 40th year.