February 2013



Phone (908) 782-4426 - [email protected]


Preventive Medicine for Combating Communication Diseases in a Veterinary Practice Part II


One of the associate veterinarians in your practice is upset with the inability of a technician to perform her job functions effectively. The associate comes to you, as the practice owner, to express her frustrations and demand that the technician be fired. Throughout the exchange, the associate continues to raise her voice and catalog each and every shortcoming of the technician.


You're in a bind. If you fire the technician, the practice will be understaffed, but you don't want ongoing disharmony between staff members. So, how do you handle this situation in a way that keeps communication open and alleviates friction within the staff? Additionally, how can you diagnose potential communication issues and immunize your practice against future communication eruptions?


This is the conclusion of last month's article. 


(Click here to read full article)  To read the first half of the article click here.
On-boarding Your New Hire



You finally hired your A player... now what?


On-Boarding is the process by which a Practice acclimatizes its new employees.  It is one of the keys for improving productivity, building loyalty and engagement, fostering a stronger team, and helping employees become successful early in their careers within the new Practice. Employee on-boarding includes the processes that allow new employees to learn about the Practice, its structure and its vision, missionandvalues, as well as to complete new-employee paperwork relative to benefits and legal documents such as non-competes, at-will statements, and employee handbooks. For some Practices, the employee on-boarding process consists of one or two days of activities; for others, this process may involve a series of activities spanning one or many months.


Veterinary practices have learned that employee on-boarding is not merely a process for getting new employees to sign off on their new-hire paperwork, but a process that is essential to transitioning a new employee into your Practice.


(Click here to read full article)

ObamaCare and What Every Employer Needs to Know to

Prepare for 2013 and 2014


Summary of Benefits and Coverage


This is a new description of benefits and coverage that must be provided with Open Enrollment Materials for your group health plans starting with the first Open Enrollment period after September 23, 2013. Employers should verify with their health plan insurers that the new summaries have been prepared and that they are ready to be distributed during the upcoming Open Enrollment period. 


Health Care Flexible Spending Account Contributions Limited to $2,500


Effective for 2013, health care Flexible Spending Account contributions are limited to $2,500. If your cafeteria plan currently permits health care flexible spending contributions over $2,500, the plan should be amended and participants should be informed of this new limit.


Employer-Provided Notices of Exchanges and Premium Tax Credits


Beginning March 1, 2013, employers are required to provide all employees with written notice of their health coverage options, including information about health insurance exchanges and premium tax credit eligibility.  Employers should check with their health plan insurer to make sure they will prepare these notices for distribution. 


Employer Mandates


Employers with 50 or more "full time equivalent" employees are subject to the Employer Mandates and should start planning for them now. The Employer Mandates require employees to offer affordable health coverage to their full-time employees or pay a penalty.  Because these mandates become effective in 2014, any employer subject to the Employer Mandates should start by determining if eligibility and/or contribution levels of the employer's health plan should be changed to comply.


W-2 Reporting


Large employers (250+) must report the health insurance value starting with the 2012 W-2s. Small employers are not subject to this requirement until notice from the IRS.


This information was gathered by our friends at Nukk-Freeman & Cerra, P.C.  If you have any questions regarding how to prepare for the Affordable Care Act mandates coming up in 2013 and 2014, please contact Nukk-Freeman & Cerra, P.C.  It is vital that employers understand these changes and the ultimate effect on their businesses and employees.

Click here to see the original e-alert by Nukk-Freeman & Cerra, P.C.



In This Issue
Communication Diseases
On-boarding Your New Hire
ObamaCare - what you need to know!
Extern Lukas Kawalilak
VBA Welcomes Extern Lukas Kawalilak!       



Lukas Kawalilak is a 4th year student at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. After being exposed to the business and legal aspects of veterinary practice in a 3rd year elective, Lukas wanted to further explore these increasingly important facets through practical experience, leading to his externship at VBA.


His previous business experience includes company representative positions with AgCareers.com and Hill's Pet Nutrition, as well as leadership roles in numerous school organizations including the Business Management Club. He also has represented the students of the WCVM in the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association and at the Western Veterinary Conference.


Lukas graduates in May of 2013 and is moving on to a small animal rotating internship at Washington State University; his long-term goal is to gain entrance into a medical imaging residency. One of Lukas' interests is maintaining the completeness and security of medical records in the digital age, as well as preserving the important role of local veterinary medical associations in shaping public policy affecting veterinarians.


Lukas is an avid runner and swimmer, and helps his family train Seeing Eye and assistance dogs when not away at school.

 Copyright 2013 - Veterinary Business Advisors, Inc. 
 Like us on Facebook View our profile on LinkedIn Follow us on Twitter