Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Question: What does AAHA stand for and why is it important?

Dear Dr. Schaeberle,

Shiloh Veterinary Hospital has an AAHA plaque in the waiting room, what does AAHA stand for and why is it important to me?




Hi Barry,

As a proud member of the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), I never get tired of this question! In 1987, we sought accreditation by the AAHA because it was important to my practice, no matter what costs were involved. AAHA helps me make my practice better and ensures each pet is getting a high quality of care.

AAHA has approximately 3,000 hospitals that voluntarily participate in the evaluation program. Outside consultants from AAHA perform rigorous inspections to ensure we comply with the 900 different standards for service and facilities In York County, only 3 hospitals are certified: Shiloh Veterinary Hospital in Dover, Shiloh Veterinary Hospital East and Patton Animal Hospital in Red Lion.

An excellent example of the difference between certified AAHA hospitals and non-certified hospitals is quality of care during surgery and anesthesia. For instance, to perform a spay we utilize a surgeon, a surgical assistant, and a technician in charge of anesthesia from the 1st injection of a sedative to your pet’s awakening. Depending on the surgery performed, oxygen levels, heart rate, EKG, blood pressure, respiration and body temperature are monitored during the procedure. Pain medication is used before, during, and after any surgery that we perform, to keep your pet comfortable and to speed healing.

Are there national standardized protocols written for non-certified veterinary hospitals on quality of care
for your pet?

That’s the importance of AAHA certification, visit our website at or to learn more.

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Shiloh Veterinary Hospital has been hard at work to come up with the perfect blog. In July we started to run an Ask A Veterinarian article in the York Newspaper's Weekly Record. We would like to bring those questions to the masses! The questions will be posted here weekly. Overtime we will add more articles from technicians and client care representatives. So check back often as we grow this feature of our website.

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