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What is the Difference Between LVT and RVT?

by Paige Allen, MS, RVT and Josh L. Clark, MS, RVT

In the world of veterinary medicine, there are several different acronyms to identify veterinary technicians. The most common acronyms are:

  • LVT (Licensed Veterinary Technician)
  • CVT (Certified Veterinary Technician)
  • RVT (Registered Veterinary Technician)
  • LVMT (Licensed Veterinary Medical Technician)

They all refer to the same profession but are used differently depending on state regulations.

It is worth noting that you may also see the acronym CrVT (Credentialed Veterinary Technician). The CrVT acronym is used to encompass all the other acronyms.

The titles are determined by the laws in each state where veterinary technicians are required to obtain credentials to practice. Credentialing usually involves completing an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited vet tech program, passing the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE), and meeting any additional state-specific requirements.

The differences between acronyms aren't in job functions or qualifications but rather in the terminology used by different state’s practice acts. All vet techs must complete similar educational pathways, pass the VTNE, and keep their credentials current through continuing education.

The job role and duties for a veterinary technician, regardless of their acronym, are typically the same and involve assisting veterinarians with a wide range of tasks, including conducting lab work, assisting with surgeries, performing dental procedures, administering medications, and much more.

Always remember to check your specific state's requirements, as they can vary, and some states may have unique stipulations or additional exams necessary to obtain your credentials as a veterinary technician.

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