In May of 2004, the College of Veterinary Medicine at Mississippi State University hosted the 1st Symposium devoted to evidence-based veterinary medicine. The last session of that symposium was devoted to the participants sharing ideas of how best to advance the concept of evidence-based medicine in veterinary medicine. One of the suggestions made at that time was to collate our individual efforts into a national initiative, the main thrust of the initiative being to promote the principles of evidence-based medicine to the point that these principles, as much as possible, replace the authoritarian aspects of veterinary medicine. The end results would be to place the profession squarely on a foundation of results obtained from research that meets certain standards of design and analysis.
In October of 2004, a small group of attendees from the 1st Symposium met to explore the concept of a national initiative further. At that meeting, it was decided to work toward the formation of an Evidence-Based Veterinary Medicine Association (EBVMA) and to proceed on several fronts: determine feasibility of starting a journal, standardize on formats for critically appraised topics and levels of evidence (LoE), elicit support of the American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC), query the colleges of veterinary medicine about the status of evidence-based medicine in their curricula, hold a 2nd Symposium on EBVM, promote EBVM at national and regional veterinary meetings, and explore funding sources to further the Association’s goals.
Several of those who met in October 2004 re-met in October 2005 to review the various activities of the participants. At that meeting, plans were also made to proceed with the 2nd Symposium on EBVM. It was also decided to initiate a series of EBVMA-affiliated feature articles in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (JAVMA) and to make a formal proposal to associate at the 2nd Symposium.
The 2nd Symposium on EBVM was held at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Mississippi State University June 14-15, 2006. The symposium expanded on the topics that were discussed at the 1st Symposium and included a poster session. Following the symposium, a business meeting was held with those in attendance. The principal item of business was a vote to incorporate the EBVMA, adoption of a set of bylaws and constitution and election of officers.
The 3rd Symposium on EBVM was held at the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Georgia June 9-10, 2008. The symposium expanded on the topics that were discussed at the two previous symposia. At the Association’s Business Meeting, some changes were made in the constitution and bylaws and new officers were elected for the next two-year terms. In addition, the Association decided to hold a summer meeting in the intervening years between the biennial symposia.
The 4th Symposium on EBVM was held at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California, on June 14-15, 2010. Two pre-symposium workshops were held on June 13. The symposium focused on practitioners’ use of EBVM. Constitutional changes were approved at the Business Meeting.