AVMF, Purina Pro Plan expand charitable care program to support veterinarians, clients

(SCHAUMBURG, Illinois) April 26, 2023–Veterinarians often face conflict and ethical distress in the normal course of practice, especially when it comes to determining a treatment for a patient and the clients’ inability to meet the increasing costs of veterinary care.

In a 2017 JAVMA survey of small animal veterinarians, 77% of respondents reported that the economic limitations of clients were either a moderate or primary contributor to their level of professional burnout.

To help address this challenge, the American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF) is partnering with Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets to help expand the Foundation’s Reaching Every Animal with Charitable Care (REACH) Program. Learn more about the American Veterinary Medical Foundation’s Reaching Every Animal with Charitable Care (REACH) Program and how to apply.

This national program provides grants to AVMA members who offer immediate care at a low cost to pets with owners experiencing financial limitations. Grant requests will not be considered for elective surgery, including spays and neuters, or routine preventative care. Each charitable care grant request may be funded for up to $500 per case as determined by reviewers, for a total of no more than $2,000 per applicant per year. More information on the program is available through a frequently asked questions document (PDF).

The campaign with Purina will offer up to $200,000 for the AVMF REACH Program™ to provide veterinarians relief from stress brought on by financial struggles of pet owners.

To further increase funding for the program, Purina has committed to donating $1 to the AVMF to support the REACH program, up to $200,000 for each purchase made on Purina Pro Plan’s VetDirect website through June 30, 2023, so that veterinarians don’t have to choose between their patients and their practice.

REACH aims to break down barriers to access to immediate veterinary care by increasing assistance and access to the most vulnerable communities.

This program empowers AVMF to bring its “Helping Veterinarians Help Animals” motto to life on a greater scale, said Dr. José Arce, chair of the AVMF board of directors.

“The goal of the AVMF REACH Program is to remove some of the difficult decisions practitioners must make when a client can’t afford lifesaving care for their pet. Thanks to the donation from Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets, more of their answers can be ‘yes’ instead of ‘no,’” Dr. Arce said.

A version of this article appears in the June 2023 print issue of JAVMA.