have followed the same trend as Law Schools and are more interested in increasing profitability by filling as many seats as possible. As a result, Veterinary schools are turning out many more graduates who will not be able to build a career because there isn’t enough market demand, i.e., there aren’t enough jobs.
Increasing financial pressures to pay back large student loan debts (The average Veterinary School debt is $300k with a 7% interest rate.), along with the emotional demands of caring for sick and dying animals, places young Veterinarians at a high risk for mental distress. To further compound matters, the liability insurance for Veterinarians is prohibitively expensive, while job prospects are modest. Many young Veterinarians have no choice but to work for large corporate types of veterinary practices. The large corporate Veterinarian Clinics far outpace the solo practitioners of the past.
All of these stresses and more have made the practice of Veterinary medicine a career pursuit that is high in risk and low in reward. Many of the Veterinarians involved in animal care have high suicide rates when compared to the general population. To further compound matters, veterinarians are at high risk for being sued by litigious plaintiffs and their attorneys for the smallest of errors, or for no reason at all. Working with sick or dying animals and dealing with their emotionally wrought owners takes its toll. It’s one thing to lose an animal while undergoing care and quite another to be sued simply because it was the animal’s time to die.
For Dr. Morris Samson, his work as an advocate for his fellow Veterinarians is just beginning. “I became an activist only when I could retire,” he said. “Now I can talk openly about what is wrong with the field. I’ve been an activist my whole life and I can talk about what needs to be done to provide a better quality of life for Veterinarians.”
For more information about Dr. Morris Samson, please see his press kit.