EPRUMA highlights key role of veterinary visits to further responsible use of antibiotics in animals
Since 2005 EPRUMA has been actively promoting best practices for responsible use of medicines in animals and has published best-practice guidelines for the use of antibiotics, vaccines and anthelmintics in food-producing animals (you can download our guidelines here).
EPRUMA partners reiterate the need for on-the-ground action to ensure adherence to these guidelines and recognise the key role that veterinarians and regular veterinary visits on farms play in this respect.
Veterinary supervision and care through the implementation of regular veterinary visits as foreseen by EU rules on transmissible animal diseases (Regulation 2016/429) is a welcome recognition of the important role that veterinarians can play in addressing antibiotic resistance by acting as stewards for responsible antibiotic use.
“A well-designed animal health plan, including vaccination programmes, and farmer interactions with veterinarians is a key element for every farm. Furthermore, proper monitoring of the animals and record keeping of observations made is essential for an early diagnosis of conditions affecting the animal’s health and welfare.
Veterinarians are highly educated to evaluate the health condition of animals under their care, to diagnose and to prescribe the necessary treatment. They are additionally well-aware of the mechanisms leading to the development of antibiotic resistance and the risks for animals and people. In Europe antibiotics are only ever used following the examination, diagnosis and prescription by a veterinarian. Greater recognition of this reality is a welcome addition for policy discussions around the use of antibiotics in animals,” said EPRUMA Chair Steve Hallahan.
Antibiotics remain valuable tools to treat infectious bacterial diseases. They are essential for safeguarding the health and welfare of both farm and companion animals. On farms the administration of antibiotics should be complementary to good farm-management practices and a properly designed animal health plan. For companion animals the administration of antibiotics follows the general principle of ‘as little as possible, as much as necessary’ as advised by the veterinarian.
EPRUMA partners remain committed to promoting the key role of veterinary oversight and supporting transparency of data on the use of veterinary antibiotics to determine trends and identify possible risk factors so that they can addressed appropriately.
Here is the video “Reducing Use for EPRUMA“