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Veterinary field contributes billions to Ohio economy

RGtimeline/iStock/Thinkstock vet with pigs
Veterinarians work in a variety of disciplines affecting economic growth and job creation beyond caring for companion animals.

Veterinary medicine contributes $13 billion annually in direct and supporting services to Ohio’s economy, according to a recent economic study. The findings are from a 2017 analysis by Regionomics LLC, which researched the impact veterinary medicine has in economic activity and employment contributions to Ohio.

The study, a collaborative effort between the Ohio Veterinary Medical Assn. (OVMA) and The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM), found that veterinary services in Ohio contribute $2.4 billion in direct economic output while sustaining more than 23,000 jobs. Support of animal-related industries, including agricultural production, reflects an additional $10.6 billion in annual economic activity.

“Veterinary medicine supports Ohio’s economy and communities in a variety of substantive ways, including agriculture, research and human health,” Ohio State CVM dean Rustin Moore said. “As the only college of veterinary medicine in Ohio, we are proud of the role we play in direct economic activity, supporting the efforts of veterinary practitioners and advancing the economic health of all animal care-related industries in Ohio.”

Veterinarians work in a variety of disciplines affecting economic growth and job creation beyond caring for companion animals. Areas not often considered as part of the veterinary field include food animal production, zoos, racetracks, health research, education and animal nutrition. The economic study not only reaffirmed the importance of veterinary medicine’s role in supporting the economic activity of these industries, but it also explored issues of veterinary geographic distribution, veterinary student loan debt and the contributions of the human/animal bond in mitigating human health care costs, the announcement said.

“Veterinary medicine not only keeps Ohio’s pet and farm animals healthy, but it also plays an important role in Ohio’s economic health,” OVMA president Dr. Tod Beckett explained. “We are proud of the meaningful contributions we make and see greater opportunities to serve and contribute in the years ahead.”

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