Advanced Veterinary Specialists (AVS) Certified by Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society (VECCS) as Level II Facility

Level II Facility

Santa Barbara, CA ¬– Advanced Veterinary Specialists (AVS), Santa Barbara’s only locally owned, multi-specialty, 24-hour emergency pet hospital, was recently certified as a Level II facility by the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society (VECCS). The prestigious certification is only held by two other veterinary hospitals in the state of California: Fresno Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center (Level I) and The Pet Emergency and Specialty Center of Marin (Level II). There are 27 Level I and II certified hospitals throughout the United States.
“We are pleased to be Southern California’s only facility certified by the VECCS,” says AVS owner Andrea Wells, DVM, DACVIM. “We’ve worked hard to become a trusted veterinary leader in Santa Barbara, and to now be recognized nation-wide is an accomplishment we are very proud of.”
In order to attain a Level II certification, an emergency and critical care facility must be a 24-hour acute care facility with the medical staff, personnel, and training necessary to provide emergent and critical patient care. The facility must be open to receive small animal emergency patients 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
In addition to a long list of prerequisites including strict staffing requirements, medical record requirements, continuing education standards, emergent and surgical capabilities and more, a Level II facility must have a dedicated surgical preparation area and specialized medical items on site at all times. These items include canine and feline red blood cell and plasma transfusion products, central venous catheters, chest tubes, on-site laboratory equipment, analgesia, advanced surgical instruments, ultrasound, endoscopy, and much more. The facility must have board-certified specialists in specific disciplines on site, specialty medical equipment, high level anesthetic monitoring, specialized training, and must also have consultation capabilities with a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Radiology for the review of diagnostic images when necessary.
The mission of VECCS is to raise the level of patient care in the veterinary industry, helping to improve access and quality of emergency and critical care to every patient in need. VECCS lists its core values as integrity, service, competence, collaboration, support, and education, all values the staff at Advanced Veterinary Specialists align with and intend to further promote in the Santa Barbara area.
“The certification process took about a year, and required incredible dedication and teamwork,” Dr. Wells said. “Our board certified critical care specialist, Dr. Carol Haak, spearheaded the massive undertaking to achieve this high honor. I am extremely proud of our entire group of exceptional individuals who work so well together and love taking care of our patients.”
Founded in 2012, AVS is the only locally owned, multi-specialty, 24-hour emergency pet hospital in Santa Barbara. The practice, located in a 5,000-sq-ft facility on East Carrillo Street, is staffed with board-certified internists, an oncologist, cardiologists, surgeons, and dentists, as well as five emergency medicine veterinarians, a board-certified critical care specialist, a grief specialist, and 40 trained veterinary assistants and technicians. The critical care hospital is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and all holidays. The emergency staff is prepared to handle an abundance of medical emergencies.
AVS also provides specialized care for illnesses and injuries outside the scope of general veterinary care. The hospital’s specialists utilize advanced equipment to perform surgical procedures, cancer therapy, ultrasounds, echocardiograms, endoscopy, chemotherapy, biopsies, bone marrow sampling, blood and plasma transfusions, advanced imaging, and more, in a modern, comfortable, and accessible location in downtown Santa Barbara. For more information, visit
AVS is located at 414 East Carrillo Street in Santa Barbara.


Advanced Veterinary Specialists
414 East Carrillo Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101

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