Policy on Essential Functions for Veterinary Technology

Physical and intellectual requirements

              The field of veterinary technology is both intellectually and physically challenging.  The American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 ensure that qualified applicants have the ability to pursue program admission however, the applicant must meet the essential skills and technical standards to perform functions required of the Program and profession.  Every student will be held to the same standards with or without reasonable accommodations.

  • Vision, with or without correction, must allow the determination of minute areas of detail, very small variations in color and adequate depth perception (size, shape and texture), including differentiation of details as viewed through a microscope.  Visual ability must be sufficient for observation and assessment necessary in nursing care both from a distance and close by in order to recognize physical status and non-verbal responses including behaviors.
  • Speech and hearing must permit clear and effective communication with colleagues, clients, faculty and staff without lip reading.  Auditory ability must be sufficient to monitor and assess health status, including auscultation of heart and lungs, and hear equipment alarms and warning sounds from animals and humans of impending danger or injury.
  • Students must be able to read, write, speak and report accurately and effectively in English.
  • Students must be able to comprehend and carry out complex written and oral directions given in English. 
  • Students must possess the physical ability to tolerate walking and standing for sustained periods of time, be capable of lifting and/or carrying up to 50 pounds from floor to waist level frequently, and be capable of handling, positioning, and restraining live animals of small and large animal species. 
  • Students must be able to move his/her entire body a distance of no less than three meters within two seconds of a signal to do so, to move from danger while handling animals in confined spaces. 
  • Students must possess fine motor movements in order to perform the essential functions of the profession.  This includes the dexterity to manipulate small equipment, adjust resistance on equipment, and manage syringes, catheters, and common surgical instruments. 
  • Students must possess tactile ability sufficient for physical assessment and to perform nursing duties in a timely manner.  Examples include performing palpation during physical exams, administering oral, intramuscular, subcutaneous, and intravenous medication, insert and remove tubes and perform wound care. 
  • Student must be able to have sustained contact with multiple species of animals and be amenable to learning the safe handling, restraining, and working with these animals.  An individual should not be allergic to domestic animals to the extent that would prohibit working in a facility that has them. 
  • Student must be able to work around strong chemicals. 
  • Students must be able to function in a structured environment within significant time constraints.
  • Students must possess a willingness to assist with and perform a wide variety of routine medical, surgical, and diagnostic procedures common to the veterinary setting, including humane euthanasia.
  • Students must be able to complete required tasks/functions under stressful conditions, including emergency situations.
  • Students must demonstrate socially appropriate behavior; maintain cleanliness and personal grooming consistent with close human and animal contact. 
  • Students must be able to progress toward minimal supervision as they advance through the program.
  • Students must be able to interact appropriately with clients and all members of the veterinary healthcare team. 

                  Students receiving accommodations for classes or for any other program related purpose must report the accommodation to the Program Chair and individual instructors prior to the start of each quarter.  It is the students' responsibility to notify the Veterinary Technology Program of any necessary accommodation for disability.  Call 509-574-4961 for Disability Support Services.