By Jo de Roo
Photography: Jo de Roo, and courtesy Equine Care Group
In mid May 2022 the merger was announced in Belgium between the world-famous De Bosdreef equine clinic and one of the largest equine practices in Europe, Equitom. Until now, this type of merger to create the Equine Care Group is unheard of, and together they account for an annual total of 4,000 surgical procedures, 30,000 consultations, 850 MRIs and 600 CT scans.
So, who is who? In 1992, the De Bosdreef animal clinic was founded in Moerbeke-Waas under the initiative of Hans Wilderjans and Bernard Boussauw. De Bosdreef was thus the first private clinic for horses and small animals in Belgium with, at that time, four veterinarians, five stables, two operating theatres and two exam rooms for horses and small animals, respectively, one reception hall and an admin office.
From the outset there was a strong focus on quality and the pursuit of perfection as far as medical care was concerned, and De Bosdreef has played a pioneering role in the development and evolution of equine medicine. They were among the first in Belgium to perform arthroscopies on horses, and installed the latest technologies such as MRI, scintigraphy, CT scans, and objective motion analysis. All of this steered by world-renowned certified specialists.
Strengthened by the entry of partners Filip Vandenberghe and Michael Meulyzer, De Bosdreef quickly built a strong national and international reputation in the equine veterinary world and grew as a reference state-of-the-art equine hospital. In 2017, the hospital moved to a brand-new hypermodern site, adapted to the modern needs of top sport horses, their riders, and owners. The new infrastructure includes 54 stables, five examination rooms, three operating theatres and one indoor arena.
The De Bosdreef Group also has a clinic in Ternat, called De Morette. This clinic is ideally located and is a strategic attraction for horses from Flanders, Wallonia, and northern France. Michael Meulyzer, a European- and US-recognized specialist surgeon heads this equine clinic and provides a permanent service in this region with his ambitious team. In 2018, a third department was opened in Lille, namely the Cavallina medical where a variety of services are provided by the team on an in-and-out basis.
Equitom was founded in 2002 by Tom Mariën, whose clinic has grown into a state-of-the-art equine clinic with a complete range of medical services in the fields of surgery, internal medicine, orthopaedics, ophthalmology, medical imaging, and rehabilitation. Equitom has developed innovative surgical techniques that are used throughout the world. Due to its strong image, the continuous rapid growth over the past 20 years, and the presence of state-of-the-art equipment, the Lummen clinic has become a unique medical equine centre with clients from around the world. Globally, Equitom is one of the largest equine hospitals.
Just a few months after the official opening in May 2014, the need for a specialized orthopaedic centre with additional rehabilitation facilities grew. On September 1, 2017, the new orthopaedics and rehabili-tation complex was officially opened. In 2019, Equitom invested in the purchase of the Mazy Castle in Wallonia in order to build a new equine clinic to offer high-quality veterinary medicine. The inauguration of this brand-new clinic is planned for the end of 2022... To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber
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