Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Missouri offers loan waivers to veterinary students

Livestock producers and others in related industries continue to be affected by a national shortage of large-animal veterinarians, Julie Harker writes for Brownfield Network, but some states are using financial incentives to lure students to the trade. The Missouri legislature recently appropriated half a million dollars for the Large Animal Veterinary Student Loan Program, which waives loans for new vets who work in Missouri's areas of need. Click here to read a summary of the bill. (Photo by Alex Witkowicz, Worcester, Mass., Telegram and Gazette)

College educations of six University of Missouri students will be paid for by the money appropriated this year. Dr. Taylor Woods, Missouri's acting state veterinarian, "says it will take about 10 years of steady funding to ease the critical shortage of farm veterinarians in Missouri and he hopes legislature commits each year to do that," because the shortage is critical, Harker writes. "Last summer I had a person who went out and bought a group of registered heifers," Woods told her. "They were getting (probably) pneumonia and were dying but the problem was, the veterinarians in the area were tied up and couldn’t get there for a day or so. And that cost the producer a lot of money." (Read more)

The Rural Blog reported on the shortage of large-animal veterinarians May 22 and Oct. 4.

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