Meet the NorthStar VETS Team: Steven Berkowitz, DVM

Steven Berkowitz, DVM is a doctor in the Emergency and Critical Care service at NorthStar VETS. In this blog post and video below, he talks about when he knew he was going to be a veterinarian, how the critical care service works, and his favorite thing about working at NorthStar VETS.

How Dr. Berkowitz got into veterinary medicine
We caught up with Emergency and Critical Care veterinarian, Dr. Steven Berkowitz, who was examining a patient. “I originally wanted to become a veterinarian when I was eight years old. My father is a physician, and my uncle was a veterinarian. I fell in love with the science aspect of it, but obviously love dogs and cats and felt like that really was my calling. Even in my elementary school yearbook, it asked what everyone wanted to be, what their favorite character was, and what their favorite food was, and I wanted to be a veterinarian in fifth grade already.”

“I went to undergrad at the University of Miami, did my veterinary studies at St. Georges University in Grenada in the West Indies, and did my final year at the University of Illinois. After that, I did an internship at ASPCA in New York City, and was an emergency doctor at a hospital in North Jersey for a couple of years before deciding to go back and do a residency in critical care, which I completed at Oradell Animal Hospital up in North Jersey. Shortly after that, I started in the critical care department here at NorthStar VETS.”

How the Critical Care service works
Chesterfield Fire Company Recieving Award from NorthStar VETSThe Critical Care department at NorthStar VETS sees a huge variety of different emergency cases each week. “In Emergency, we take in patients that have traumas, toxicities, have severe metabolic derangements, or have things like diabetes and hyperthyroidism. What we do is we take them in from their local veterinarians or on an emergent basis, take care of them overnight, and then transfer them to other specialty services. In Critical Care, what we do is take care of those same patients, and help out all the other services in the hospital. For example, if the Surgery department has a really complicated anesthetic case and they need to focus on the surgery, we can focus on the anesthesia, whether that be with the protocol or helping out in the operating room suite. If the Internal Medicine team has a complicated case that requires special attention and needs more surveillance, they may have us monitor cases as well. The Critical Care service is like a catch-all to help the other services and help take care of the sickest of the sick animals.”

“Even with bad days, we’re still helping patients and their families, so at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how busy we are, how crazy the cases are, or how crazy the day is, we feel great knowing that we’re helping people and we’re helping maintain pets’ quality of life, which to me is the most important thing we can do.”

This is Dr. Berkowitz favorite thing about working at NorthStar VETS
Dr. Berkowitz and the team at NorthStar VETS will continue to provide world-class care for you and your pets. “My favorite thing here is not only the volume of patients that we see, but the camaraderie between the different departments and how well we all work together. It’s an awesome place to be. From the front desk to the back, we all get along very well, and it’s a nice cohesive team.”

“…we’re helping maintain pets’ quality of life, which to me is the most important thing we can do.”

Learn more about the Emergency and Critical Care service at NorthStar VETS

Steven Berkowitz, DVMSteven Berkowitz, DVM
Dr. Steven Berkowitz attended St. Georges University and did his clinical year at the University of Illinois. Berkowitz joined NorthStar VETS after serving as the Chief of Emergency and Critical Care at another specialty hospital. Prior to that, he completed a three-year residency in Emergency and Critical Care medicine at the Oradell Animal Hospital in Paramus, NJ. His residency was completed at one of only a few recognized veterinary trauma centers in the United States. Prior to his residency, he was a staff Emergency Veterinarian at Animal Specialty Center in Yonkers, NY as well as serving as an emergency doctor at Animal Emergency and Referral Associates in Fairfield, NJ for 3 years. Dr. Berkowitz can be seen on seasons 5 and 6 of “Animal Precinct” on Animal Planet, which was filmed during his internship at The Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital of the ASPCA in New York City.
Dr. Berkowitz has special interest in the management of metabolic and endocrine derangements, trauma, as well as management of the septic patient.

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