A California pet parent’s user experience with pet telemedicine using Airvet

Jan 31, 2024

As the clock struck midnight on January 1, 2024, California’s pet care landscape entered a new era with a groundbreaking event—the first-ever pet telemedicine visit led by Airvet’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr. Jeff Werber. During this visit, pet parent Mickey Schlesinger virtually received a flea and tick refill for his dog, a 3 year old German Shepherd named Bamba. 

We followed up with Mickey with a quick interview about his experience to help others better understand how the telemedicine experience is different from pet telehealth. Please read on and enjoy the interview!

Interview with Airvet & Mickey, Pet Parent to Bamba

Airvet Product Team: Mickey, can you share a bit about why you were calling Airvet on January 1st?

Mickey: Sure thing! I needed a flea & tick medicine refill for my dog, Bamba, a 3 year old German Shepard. When I heard that Airvet was offering telemedicine appointments in California, I knew that’s where I wanted to get my refill instead of heading all the way to the vet. Since Dr. Jeff and I didn’t have a VCPR (Veterinary Client-Patient Relationship), as I hadn’t seen him in over a year, so I was able to get the prescription refill using Airvet. It’s great that being in California means we can do this virtually now!

Airvet Product Team:  How long did the appointment take from the time you opened the app to getting the prescription Bamba needed?

Mickey: The entire process, from opening the Airvet app to receiving the prescription Bamba needed, was fast! Connecting with Dr. Werber took about a minute, and the actual telemedicine appointment with Dr. Werber was just a few minutes longer. During this time, we discussed Bamba’s medical history, experience with the medication, and Dr. Werber efficiently provided the refill prescription. The entire appointment took less than ten minutes!

Airvet Product Team: What message would you like to convey to other pet parents who might be hesitant to try telemedicine for their pets?

Mickey: For those hesitant about telemedicine, I encourage them to consider the advantages, such as saving time and reducing stress for both themselves and their pets. Usually, I have to pack up Bamba in the car and head to the vet. And, depending on the appointment availability, sometimes I also have to take time off work to ensure that Bamba gets their medication on time. 

Ultimately, my positive experience with telemedicine has led me to appreciate the convenience and effectiveness this service offers. Embracing these innovative solutions can be a valuable addition to any pet parent’s toolkit, especially when addressing minor health concerns or seeking prescription refills.

Airvet Product Team: Thanks so much, Mickey! Do you have any final thoughts on your experience with Airvet and how you think telemedicine will impact the world of pet care?

Mickey: I’m truly impressed by the effectiveness and convenience our telemedicine appointment brought to Bamba’s veterinary care. The seamless process, from opening the app to receiving a prescription refill, showcased the potential of telemedicine in streamlining common pet care requests and increasing accessibility of pet care more generally.

Airvet Product Team:

We’re so excited that you had a great experience with Airvet in obtaining a prescription for Bamba so quickly and efficiently. The broader implications of telemedicine in pet care are profound and as an organization dedicated to the wellbeing of pets everywhere, we’re excited for the future. 

Telemedicine for our pets addresses potential barriers to seeking veterinary care, such as travel, time constraints, or even current global circumstances. It enhances accessibility, making quality healthcare more attainable for pets and their parents. The future looks very bright for accessible pet care!

How to request a prescription through Airvet

Starting Jan. 1, pet parents in the state of California will be able to connect with a veterinarian to determine if a prescription is needed for their pet.

To request a prescription visit, simply open the Airvet app and tap “Need a prescription” on the homepage.

Why telemedicine for pets matters

The implementation of California Assembly Bill 1399 (AB1399) marked a transformative moment in pet care delivery. This legislation revolutionized veterinary services in California, enabling veterinarians to prescribe medications remotely and broadening access for pet parents. This is particularly impactful for those in remote areas, those facing mobility issues, or other constraints that make it hard to visit a vet in person. 

Airvet, driven by a commitment to enhancing pets’ lives promptly utilized AB1399 to launch the first pet telemedicine visit at midnight on Jan 1, 2024, marking a significant step in making veterinary care more accessible and stress-free. The bill not only expanded care opportunities but also streamlined the prescription process allowing California veterinarians the latitude to prescribe certain medication for up to six months following an initial remote veterinary consultation. This newfound flexibility both accelerates treatment for pets and reduces stress for owners and the veterinary system.