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Life is a wild, wild ride! - Part 1

June 25, 2019

Life is a wild, wild ride! - Part 1

Have you ever wondered how some people end up where they are in life? Sometimes I wonder how I ended up where I am today - board certified surgeon working as clinical faculty at a veterinary school, CEO of AcuroVet®, veterinarian for a non-profit equine sanctuary in CA, with a family of 4 (well… a husband, a horse, 2 dogs and a cat….) Twenty years ago I would never have imagined it! So how did I get here?

Well, since I don’t want to bore you with a lengthy story of my life I will give you some highlights. First, veterinary school - wasn’t even on my radar! I was finishing up my third year of undergraduate work, volunteering for the National Park Service, all ready to someday be a Park Ranger. Then I saw IT… colic surgery… unfortunately on my own horse…. It was my first (only?) epiphany. I know, I know - so cliche - saw a surgery and then HAD TO go to veterinary school. But it did take another year of undergrad work and an unsuccessful round of applications before I made it.

Things proceeded in relatively orderly fashion from there. Graduation. Internship. Private practice. Residency. Acupuncture certification. Back to private practice. No big epiphanies occurred. What did happen was a thriving acupuncture schedule. What also happened was crappy medical records for those acupuncture visits. Yes, I worked for a group that had a nice, big, box-brand veterinary electronic practice management program, but, boy was it cumbersome for me to not only write my records, but also to refer back to see trends with my patients.

Semi-epiphany! Could I create a program to fill my needs? I mean, we were living in a technology based era, were we not? Sure, sure, I could download some “form maker” - but how would that really help me? I wanted to easily SEE what I had found and treated in the past, not try to read a bunch of abbreviations. So down the rabbit hole I went. Asking friends and acquaintances for recommendations, advise, consul. Over time, I nosed my way through all the information and found the company I was looking for - a solution company that could build my lightbulb idea - a visual based way to record acupuncture visits. What it also took, though, was money. So, in order to solve my own medical record issue, I thought “maybe I am not alone” - and other veterinarians will need this too! Thus, Acuro was created - to solve my own problem and to disseminate this solution to other veterinarians who needed it.

I saved time by simply tapping on acupuncture points on a horse image (or a dog, cat, or bovid....) My patient care and follow-up improved as I could track response to treatment by seeing how the patterns of sensitivity changed from visit to visit. I could easily send a professional looking report to my clients with a horse image showing where their horse was sore and where they were treated. Acuro was well received by my clients (horse owners) and my customer (veterinarians using Acuro.)

Next time…. The ride continues…. Learn how I went from Acuro to AcuroVet®.

Dr. Maureen Kelleher is an equine veterinarian specializing in lameness, imaging, and surgery. In addition to her commitment to AcuroVet®, she is a clinical assistant professor of equine sports medicine and surgery at Virginia Tech’s Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center. She is board certified in large animal surgery and a certified veterinary acupuncturist.


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