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Press Releases

February 27, 2023
VDACS and LMU College of Veterinary Medicine to Launch Additional Laboratory Service in Southwest Virginia
Additional service expands VDACS lab capabilities, provides farmers herd health options
Contact: Michael Wallace

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) and the Lincoln Memorial University Richard A. Gillespie College of Veterinary Medicine (LMU-CVM) announced a partnership today to launch an additional laboratory service for Southwest Virginia livestock producers. This partnership enables LMU-CVM veterinarians to perform on-farm necropsies on deceased livestock and poultry and submit tissue samples to the VDACS’ Regional Animal Health Laboratory (RAHL) in Wytheville for testing. This new service is in addition to the necropsy and testing that is already performed at the Wytheville RAHL. Samples may also be tested at the other VDACS’ RAHLs in Lynchburg, Warrenton, and Harrisonburg.

“This partnership provides a new low-cost field necropsy option to ensure producers and veterinarians in the western most portion of Virginia have access to animal health diagnostics. I would like to thank Dr. Stacy Anderson and everyone at LMU-CVM for their collaboration on this very important initiative,” said Joseph Guthrie, VDACS Commissioner. “During the recent laboratory listening sessions, we heard the needs of producers very clearly. This alliance and additional service strengthens the VDACS lab system and demonstrates our focus on the need for food animal necropsies in Southwest Virginia.”

Today’s announcement provides livestock farmers with operations in, but not limited to, Lee, Scott, Wise, Dickenson, Buchanan, Russell, and Washington counties an additional option for disease surveillance and support for owner herd health plans. While the Wytheville RAHL will continue to perform necropsies, the new service enables livestock producers to eliminate the time and transportation cost of traveling to Wytheville.

In addition, performing field necropsies adds to the veterinary curriculum of LMU-CVM. “In addition to serving the local community, this partnership expands the classroom experience by providing our veterinary students with valuable field experience,” said Dr. Stacy Anderson, LMU-CVM Dean. “Partnerships such as this help to ensure the work force readiness of our veterinary graduates.”

Livestock producers may be charged by LMU-CVM for field service. The fee for necropsy sample testing and reporting is listed in the VDACS Office of Laboratory Services Test Fee Schedule. Livestock field necropsies are provided with the same level of quality and reporting timeliness as necropsies performed in the laboratory.

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