dagger]) The location of a VETCAP, as previously stated, was unrelated to the presence of a local VFU, so places visited could be well or underserved.
Not only is there direct competition, where the VETCAP "steals" the business of the local veterinarian, but there is also a more subtle effect.
According to commanders informally interviewed several weeks after each mission, the VETCAP was extremely effective in producing a more open and friendly community attitude toward the coalition forces.
In order to limit the negative effects of performing a VETCAP while still retaining the military objectives, the following standard operating procedure was developed based on this study:
If there is no veterinarian within 10 km of the VETCAP site, then the site may be designated as underserved, and we provide full-service veterinary care.
Fliers were distributed at every VETCAP, which explained that this event was a one-time gift of the Coalition Forces, and explained that further treatment and guidance was available from the local veterinarian.
One can build a silo and paint "a gift from the American public" in large letters on the side, and it will be more permanently appreciated within the community than any one-day VETCAP.
The VETCAP is performed for the purposes of gaining favor within a community.
These short-term clinics are referred to as civil action programs (CAPs), or, more specifically, MEDCAPs (medical), VETCAPs (veterinary), and DENCAPs (dental), according to the services offered.
For this reason, we must be very careful in the performance of VETCAPs to ensure that we do not endanger the long-term viability of the local veterinarians.