Veterinary Shortage Overview
There has been a trend in Vermont and nationwide whereby certain geographic pockets have seen their food animal population dwindle, and subsequently, a drop in the number of food animal practitioners. The concern is that this trend, which may be the result of short-term market forces, may perpetuate itself and permanently alter the landscape of Vermont’s food animal industry.
Vermont Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program
The Vermont Educational Loan Repayment Task Force is accepting applications for the 2017 award cycle through October 31, 2017. To learn more about this opportunity or to apply for funding, visit the Vermont Veterinary Medical Association website.
The Vermont legislature authorized the appropriation of state funds in 2011 and 2012 for purposes of ensuring an "adequate and stable supply of food animal veterinarians in Vermont". In response to this appropriation, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets partnered with the Vermont Veterinary Medical Association to establish the Vermont Food Animal Veterinarian Educational Loan Repayment Program (VFAVELRP), the purpose of which is to award funding to qualified food animal veterinary applicants to help support repayment of their veterinary loan debt. The program was implemented in 2012, and will continue for as long as there is need and available funding. By taking the initiative to allocate funds of $30,000 annually, our state government has identified and acknowledges the integral role food animals play in the fabric that makes up Vermont.
United States Department of Agriculture's VMLRP
USDA’s Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (VMLRP), authorized by the National Veterinary Medical Services Act (NVMSA), helps qualified veterinarians offset a significant portion of the debt incurred in pursuit of their veterinary medical degrees in return for their service in certain high-priority veterinary shortage situations. The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) implements NVMSA by entering into educational loan repayment agreements with veterinarians who agree to provide veterinary services in veterinarian shortage situations for a determined period of time. Visit the following link for more information about the program and about Vermont's designated shortage areas: