WSR 10-11-120



(Veterinary Board of Governors)

[ Filed May 18, 2010, 5:27 p.m. , effective June 18, 2010 ]

Effective Date of Rule: Thirty-one days after filing.

Purpose: The amendments clarify what must be included and maintained in the record of veterinary patients. The amended rules also clarify who may request copies of patient records and the fees that may be charged for providing the patient records. The rules also shorten the time period for responding to a request for records from fifteen to ten days.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 246-933-320.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 18.92.030.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 10-01-068 on December 11, 2009.

A final cost-benefit analysis is available by contacting Judy Haenke, P.O. Box 47850, Olympia, WA 98504-7850, phone (360) 236-4947, fax (360) 586-4359, e-mail

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Date Adopted: May 18, 2010.

Timothy D. Gintz, DVM, Chair

Veterinary Board of Governors


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 03-14-035, filed 6/23/03, effective 7/24/03)

WAC 246-933-320   General requirements for all veterinary medical facilities.   (1) Construction and maintenance: All facilities shall be so constructed and maintained as to provide comfort and safety for patients and clients. All areas of the premises shall be maintained in a clean and orderly condition, free of objectionable odors. All facilities shall comply with applicable state, county and municipal laws, ordinances and regulations.

(2) Ventilation: Adequate heating and cooling shall be provided for the comfort of the animals, and the facility shall have sufficient ventilation in all areas.

(3) Lighting: Proper lighting shall be provided in all rooms utilized for the practice of veterinary medicine. Outside lighting shall be adequate to identify the building and to assist the clients.

(4) Water: Potable water shall be provided.

(5) Basic sanitation: Any equipment, instruments or facilities used in the treatment of animals shall be clean and sanitary at all times to protect against the spread of diseases, parasites and infection.

(6) Waste disposal: Covered waste containers, impermeable by water, shall be used for the removal and disposal of animal and food wastes, bedding, animal tissues, debris and other waste.

Disposal facilities shall be so operated as to minimize insect or other vermin infestation, and to prevent odor and disease hazards or other nuisance conditions.

The facility shall use refrigeration and employ a procedure for the prompt, sanitary and esthetic disposal of dead animals which complies with all applicable state, county and municipal laws, ordinances and regulations.

(7) Records:

(a) Every veterinarian shall keep daily written ((reports)) records of the animals he or she treats.

(b) Separate records for companion animals shall be kept for each animal.

(c) The medical record for a litter may be recorded either on the dam's record or on a litter record until the individual animals are permanently placed or reach the age of three months.

(d) Records for food and fibre producing animals and animals kept in herds or flocks, etc., may be maintained on a group or ((client)) owner or authorized agent basis.

(e) All records shall be legible, readily retrievable and shall be kept for a period of three years following the last treatment or examination.

(f) The author of all medical record entries must be identified by code or employee number, or initials.

(g) The records shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

(i) Name, address and telephone number of the owner or authorized agent.

(ii) Name, number or other identification of the animal or group.

(iii) Species, breed, age, sex, weight and color of the animal.

(iv) Immunization record.

(v) Beginning and ending dates of custody of the animal.

(((vi))) (h) The records must include sufficient information ((in the history and examination portions of the record)) to justify the tentative diagnosis and to warrant the treatment. This would include, but not be limited to:

(((A))) (i) A short history of the animal's condition as it pertains to its medical status.

(((B))) (ii) Physical examination findings and any laboratory or other diagnostic tests performed ((and/))or recommended.

(((vii))) (iii) Provisional or final diagnosis.

(((viii))) (iv) Treatment administered ((and/))or recommended.

(((ix))) (v) Dosage and route of medications administered, prescribed or dispensed.

(((x))) (vi) Anesthesia dosage and route of administration.

(((xi))) (vii) Description of surgery performed.

(((xii))) (viii) Progress of the case.

(((xiii) If applicable, documentation of the low-income status for persons that seek the limited veterinary services provided by qualified animal care and control agencies and humane societies.

(b))) (8) Veterinary medical records and ((radiographs)) medical images are the property of the veterinarian or the veterinary facility that originally ordered their preparation.

(9) When requested by the ((client)) owner or authorized agent, copies of records will be made available as promptly as required ((under the)) by medical necessity or public health circumstances, but no later than ((fifteen)) ten working days upon the ((client's)) owner or authorized agent's request.

(a) The veterinarian may charge ((a reasonable)) the copying fee((, not to exceed the actual cost for providing the veterinary care information)) as set forth in WAC 246-08-400 as now or hereafter amended.

(b) A ((radiograph)) medical image shall be released upon the request of another veterinarian who has the authorization of the owner or authorized agent of the animal to which it pertains. ((Such radiograph))

The medical image shall be returned ((to)) within ten working days following receipt of a written request from the originating veterinarian or veterinary facility ((within fifteen working days of receipt of a written request)). If the originating veterinarian provides a copy of the medical image, he or she may charge the actual costs of duplicating the medical image.

(((8))) (10) Storage: All supplies, including food and bedding, shall be stored in facilities which adequately protect such supplies against infestation, contamination or deterioration. Refrigeration shall be provided for all supplies that are of a perishable nature, including foods, drugs and biologicals.

(((9))) (11) Biologicals and drugs: Biologicals and other drugs shall be stored in such a manner as to prevent contamination and deterioration in accordance with the packaging and storage requirements of the current editions of the U.S. Pharmacopeia, 12601 Twinbrook Parkway, Rockville, Maryland 20852, and the National Formulary, Mack Publishing Company, 20th and Northampton Streets, Easton, Pennsylvania 18042 ((and/))or manufacturers' recommendation.

All controlled substances shall be maintained in a locked cabinet or other suitable secure container in accordance with federal and Washington state laws.

Controlled substance records shall be readily retrievable, in accordance with federal and Washington state laws.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 18.92.030 and 18.92.260. 03-14-035, 246-933-320, filed 6/23/03, effective 7/24/03. Statutory Authority: RCW 18.92.030. 92-17-076 (Order 299B), 246-933-320, filed 8/19/92, effective 9/19/92; 91-24-098 (Order 221B), 246-933-320, filed 12/4/91, effective 1/4/92; 91-02-060 (Order 108B), recodified as 246-933-320, filed 12/28/90, effective 1/31/91; 88-08-033 (Order PM 719), 308-153-020, filed 4/1/88. Statutory Authority: RCW 18.92.030, 18.130.050 (1) and (12) and 1986 c 259 139. 86-13-070 (Order PM 600), 308-153-020, filed 6/18/86; Order PL-236, 308-153-020, filed 2/18/76.]

Washington State Code Reviser's Office