Stories From Our Customers: Animal Medical Center of Watkins Park

Today we’re proud to share the story of Animal Medical Center of Watkins Park. Animal Medical Center of Watkins Park was originally a satellite clinic of a large hospital in Washington, D.C. called Friendship Hospital for Animals. In 1992 Dr. Sue Maturo and her husband at the time purchased the clinic and turned it into a full-service animal hospital. For the past 26 years the practice has been thriving under her leadership.

Here’s Dr. Maturo’s story in her own words:

We were using an old software system called DVM Manager for reminders, invoicing and scheduling, but our medical records were 100% paper. I wanted to solve two big issues. First, I didn’t want to be a paper-based practice anymore. I thought we were way behind the times in our manner of recordkeeping. Second, we had a big issue with inventory control. I knew that our inventory system was not ideal (neither was our pricing structure), and I wanted to get a better handle on that.

By the time I decided that 2018 was going to be “the year” to come into the 21st century, I knew that I would go with a cloud-based software system. I spent quite a bit of time reading and re-reading the Veterinary Information Network discussions about the various cloud-based software systems. It wasn't really a slam-dunk decision. There were pros and cons to all of the systems. Knowing that Vetter had been in existence longer than some of the others was important to me, as well as the knowledge that, if I was unhappy with Vetter, I could retrieve my data and move on. My practice management consultant, Jeff Sanford, also recommended Vetter as one of his suggestions to improve practice profitability and workflow, and this weighed heavily with my decision-making. I should also mention that a large corporation recently purchased one of the contenders, and this definitely factored into my decision-making. My Vetter demo was really the clincher. The software looked intuitive and one that all of my staff could work with and learn.

Even though we've only been using Vetter for a month, we are already seeing how the software is improving our workflow and our inventory control. Our inventory is tight!! Also, the ability to text or email clients with their reminders is so awesome! Clients seem to prefer these methods of communication to our phone calls. It is also so nice for all the doctors to be able to see what their schedule for the upcoming days looks like, from the comfort of home. In the past, one doctor would call the office every day to see what time she started. Now she just goes on Vetter and has her answer, which frees up our receptionists to tend to their clients at the front desk. It used to be that if I wanted to email or call a client after I left the office, I would have to have remembered to write down the client's email address and phone number and take it home with me. Now, all I have to do is get on the Internet and sign into Vetter. Everything is right there for me, including lab results and old, scanned documents. I love the fact that I can access records from anywhere. If a client emails me after hours, I can speak intelligently about their pet, because all records are accessible!

Initially, our biggest stumbling block was that some of my staff members wanted to compare our old system to Vetter. Yes, this new system is different, but this does not mean that the old system was better. It simply means that we have to learn how to work with the new system to make our lives easier. This is only human nature, I know, and the great thing is that we know that we can call customer support at any time (and we do!!) and a friendly, knowledgeable person will walk us through our issue. We’re still learning something new every day, and we’re doing things better every day.

The most important reason that I would recommend Vetter to a colleague would be that the support is EXCELLENT! From the moment I "took the plunge" and signed on, the support team was phenomenal - and our data migration was a big deal! I had endless questions, and the Vetter team was always patient and happy to answer. Given that I am anything but a tech-savvy veterinarian, I felt that I understood how the process was going to work. The training was also very good for my staff and me. Lastly, I feel that Vetter adds value to any veterinary practice, if one is thinking about selling a practice in the future.

If I had to sum up my relationship with Vetter in a few words, I would say “even dinosaurs can learn Vetter!” The software is intuitive and the customer support feels like a real partnership.

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