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Emergency Medicine Distance Education

Emergency Medicine Distance Education

Develop your capacity to treat small animal emergency and critical care cases confidently and maximise your patient outcomes.

This course aims to develop your practical skills and techniques for the treatment and monitoring of critically ill animals. Triage, fluid therapy, analgesia, acute abdomen, respiratory distress and multisystem trauma are all covered with an emphasis on case-based problem solving.

Up to date theoretical information is put into practice in a cadaver-based workshop making this an essential course for veterinarians in all small animal practice situations.

Hear what tutor Trudi McAlees has to say about the course:

Past Participant:

I have really enjoyed the course, the notes and practical were excellent and very well organised. The mix of practical advice and up to date theory was an excellent mix for vets in practice. Over the years I have done quite a bit of post grad study and I will be back to the CVE.
Stephen Reid

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, you will:

  • Confidently assess and treat acute trauma cases and critically ill patients, including cases of acute dyspnoea, acute abdomen, diabetic ketoacidosis and intoxication
  • Better understand the principles of, and be able to perform, emergency procedures such as thoracocentesis, tracheostomy and CPR
  • Develop the ability to create appropriate fluid therapy plans to manage shock and hypovolaemia and for ongoing maintenance
  • Reach competency in ‘cage side’ clinical pathology (using blood smears to assess anaemia, analysing fluid from body cavities and analysing urine sediment)
  • Perform blood transfusions safely and improve optimal wound management
  • Monitor critically ill animals
  • Improve your ability to differentiate between cardiac and pulmonary disease.


  1. General set-up of a critical care area, toxicities and envenomations
    • Triage of the emergency patient
    • Interpretation of the emergency database blood tests
    • General approach to animals with a suspected intoxication
  2. Shock, fluid therapy and transfusion therapy
    • A practical run through of the pathophysiology of shock
    • What fluids to use and when
    • A review of the current recommendations for the use of synthetic colloids
    • Blood transfusion basics
  3. Electrolytes, acid/base 
    A discussion of serum electrolytes and their impact on fluid therapy
    • An introduction to acid base
    • Interpretation and use of acid base in clinical cases
  4. CPR and analgesia
    • Analgesia options in emergency and critically ill
    • Current recommendations in veterinary CPR
  5. Cardiovascular and respiratory disease
    • How do you tell them apart?
    • Emergency treatment of the dyspnoeic patient
    • Oxygen supplementation
    • An introduction to ventilation
  6. Anaemia, erythrocytosis and bleeding disorders
    • How to narrow the differential list for anaemia
    • What, other than dehydration causes erythrocytosis
    • How to differentiate the causes for abnormal bleeding
  7. Acute abdominal disease and nutrition
    • The approach to an animal with an acute abdomen
    • Pharmacology of drugs used to treat abdominal disease
    • GDV, pancreatitis
    • Abdominal effusions including uroabdomen
  8. Metabolic and endocrine emergencies, urinary tract disease
    • An overview of the approach to common endocrine emergencies
    • How do I manage the DKA patient?
    • Managing acute renal failure
    • Laboratory diagnosis of renal insufficiency
  9. Multi-system trauma and wounds
    • Managing wounds to ensure we don’t interfere with healing
    • Putting it all together: how to approach the patient with multi-system trauma
  10. Intra-cranial and extra-cranial neurological disease, ocular emergencies
    • Treating the animal with head trauma
    • Managing seizuring animals
    • Ophthalmic examination
    • Ocular emergencies
  11. This distance education course includes an optional 3-day practical workshop held in Sydney. Dates to be confirmed.

Course Delivery

This online course comes with:

  • Comprehensive digital notes supplemented by key journal articles and recommended readings
  • Self-assessed quizzes and case studies to test your knowledge and understanding
  • A discussion forum for conversation, debate and sharing cases with your peers and tutors
  • A monthly assignment where you will receive individual feedback and explanations from your tutors
  • Monthly webinars to review and discuss each module
  • 3-Day workshop practical workshop to develop practical techniques

What is Distance Education?

Premium, intensive online veterinary CPD

All CVE Distance Education (DE) programs are mentored by leading veterinary experts who will provide individual feedback and advice on completion of each monthly module. Each module may include written content, technique videos, self-reflections, quizzes and online submission of monthly assignments.

Maximise the opportunity to expand and consolidate your learning by participating in the tutor moderated group discussion forum and attending the optional 3-day practical workshop to apply the knowledge you have gained.


3-Day Workshop: Sydney TBA

*Note: if travel restrictions impact on workshops running as face to face events, arrangements will be made for an online alternative.

Who should enrol?

This course is suitable for qualified veterinarians.

Pay as you learn

Choosing your DE course is a big commitment, so there’s no need to add further stress by paying your course up front. To pay as you learn, you will need a AU$1,000 deposit to secure your place, followed by 50% of the total course fee 10 days prior to course commencement date. We’ll arrange simple monthly direct debits from your credit card over 3 or 6 months.

Note: Payment Plan will incur an additional AU$250 administration fee, and Early Bird rates do not apply if you choose the payment plan option.

For the full terms and conditions please see our Terms.

Course fees Member* Super
Early Bird
Early Bird
Member* Full Rate Non-member Rate
Emergency Medicine $6550 $6730 $6920 $7280

*Members include: Practice, Professional, Part-time Professional, Recent Graduate, and Academic members.

Loyalty DE Discount: Completed 2 or more Distance Education (DE) courses in the previous 5 years, you are eligible for a 10% discount on future DE courses. Discounts are not cumulative. For further information about discount options for multiple registrations at the one event, please read the full Terms. To redeem your discount contact the CVE via email or phone +61 2 9351 7979 (Monday to Friday, AEST 9am to 5pm).

Distance Education
Tuesday, 01 February 2022 to
Wednesday, 30 November 2022
334 CPD Point/s

Super Early Bird
30 Jun 2021
Early Bird
31 Oct 2021

Delivered Online

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Dr Trudi McAlees
Trudi McAlees
Dr Sandra Forsyth
Sandra Forsyth
Dr Yenny Indrawirawan
Yenny Indrawirawan
Dr Trudi McAlees
Trudi McAlees
Dr Trudi McAlees is a Massey Graduate who started her career in NZ in a mainly dairy practice in a small town in the centre of the North Island of New Zealand. There she was introd...
Dr Sandra Forsyth
Sandra Forsyth
Sandra Forsyth has had a mixed career having been in practice, undertaken a residency in anaesthesia and critical care, gained her boards in Anaesthesia and taught anaesthesia and ...
Dr Yenny Indrawirawan
Yenny Indrawirawan
Dr Yenny Indrawirawan is a Fellow of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care. She graduated in 2004 from the Unive...


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