The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) is accepting nominations for geographic areas of Texas experiencing a shortage of veterinarians who work in food animal medicine, rural private practice or public practice.

TAHC will accept nominations until 5:00 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 30.

As part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (VMLRP) FY2021, individuals may submit nominations to TAHC for areas they believe have a veterinary shortage.

Areas selected as having a qualified veterinary shortage may benefit from the VMLRP by having a practicing veterinarian relocate to the area or remain in the area to exchange up to three years of service for the opportunity to have up to $25,000 per year of student loan debt repaid.

The VMLRP focuses on three types of veterinary practice and will accept nominations in each category:

Type I Shortage: a veterinarian is needed to commit at least 80 percent of their time to private practice food supply veterinary medicine

Type II Shortage: a veterinarian is needed to commit at least 30 percent of their time to private practice food supply veterinary medicine in a rural area (e.g., remote or economically depressed area)

Type III Shortage: a veterinarian is needed to commit at least 49 percent time of their time to public practice settings (e.g., local, state, or federal governmental work), typically in public health, diagnostic laboratory, meat inspection, epidemiology or regulatory veterinary medicine

TAHC will also accept comments regarding the need to re-nominate previously designated areas. To view the FY2020 designated areas, click here.

The completed nomination form (pages 1 and 2 only) and comments regarding re-nominations must be submitted to comments@tahc.texas.gov or faxed to 512.832.6803, attention Dr. Roger Parker.

Provide accurate contact information upon submission and do not send forms directly to USDA.

USDA will only accept nominations that are reviewed, approved and submitted by the TAHC executive director. TAHC will review all nominations and may combine geographic areas, if appropriate.

For more information about the VMLRP and the process of shortage designation, visit the VMLRP website or contact Dr. Roger Parker at 512.832.6580.

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