The inaugural Necropsy course was held on June 11 and 12, 2022 at Murray State University, Breathitt Veterinary Center in Hopkinsville, KY. This was a new endeavor of the Foundation created primarily to assist foreign graduate veterinarians preparing for the AVMA Educational Commission for Foreign Veterinary Graduates Clinical Proficiency Exam (CPE). However, the course was also attended by veterinarians looking to improve their necropsy skills. The course was hosted by Dr. Rafaela De Negri and Dr. Nathan Helgert and provided the opportunity for ten veterinarians to spend 2 days practicing necropsy techniques. In addition, the course provided a necropsy demonstration to a virtual audience via Zoom. Participants were from all over the world, including the USA, Canada, Brazil, India, Iraq, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Poland, Peru and Spain.
The focus of the course was to develop a consistent, easily reproducible necropsy protocol to ensure that all procedures and samples in the CPE handbook are completed. All participants were provided introductory instruction followed by a live necropsy demonstration. The in-person participants were able to practice necropsy following the guidelines laid out in the CPE handbook and take a mock exam in preparation. By the end of the weekend, all veterinarians, including those with very limited necropsy experience were comfortable performing a necropsy following the CPE guidelines. We anticipate this outreach opportunity will plant little seeds to also improve the quality of samples veterinarians provide to diagnostic laboratories all over the USA. When these veterinarians complete the CPE, they will become licensed veterinarians, and the majority are interested in pursuing careers in general practice.
In-person participants were treated to the gracious Southern hospitality of a small KY town and built great camaraderie to relieve their arduous journey into board equivalency. Given the interest and positive feedback received, we hope to provide this course on a regular basis.