Antimicrobial Stewardship

The issue of antimicrobial resistance will be closely examined by presenters from both the veterinary and human health professions during the 2014 Summit of Veterinary Leaders, which takes place during the CVMA Convention. We asked Dr. Jean Gauvin, CVMA President-Elect and Chair of the 2014 Summit of Veterinary Leaders, to explain why he selected “Antimicrobial Stewardship: A New World Order” as this year’s theme.

As all veterinarians know, antimicrobials are used to treat infections by different disease-causing microorganisms, including bacteria, mycobacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi. But microorganisms have found ways to resist antimicrobial agents. Infections with resistant bacteria were first reported over 60 years ago and early on the problem was often overlooked. If one antibiotic did not treat the infection, another one was usually available.

The situation has changed, unfortunately not for the better. Resistant bacteria are being discovered regularly and many antibiotics are now ineffective. To make things worse, very few new antibiotics are being introduced on the market. A paradigm shift is needed, which must include antimicrobial stewardship.

The “One Health” concept has always been a top priority for CVMA. Because of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), it is now more relevant than ever. AMR is a public health problem of increasing magnitude. It’s a global issue, no countries are spared, whether industrialized or emerging, hence the subtitle of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s 2014 Summit of Veterinary Leaders: “A New World Order”.

Unlike the longstanding denial attitude, the importance of this threat is now widely recognized by both the human and veterinary medical professions. During CVMA’s 2014 Summit of Veterinary Leaders, highly knowledgeable speakers will share valuable information on AMR in Canada, the USA and Europe. Attendees will discover how the world’s veterinary community is facing this threat. On top of having a fabulous roster of veterinary speakers, a medical microbiologist with a long history of association with the veterinary community will provide an overview of resistance issues in Canada from the human medicine perspective.

In order to counteract AMR, the veterinary profession must promote antimicrobial stewardship. The 2014 Summit of Veterinary Leaders is an excellent forum for CVMA to illustrate the veterinary profession’s concerns about this public health threat. Please join us for this important event on July 9, during the 2014 CVMA Convention in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Dr. Jean Gauvin, M.V.
President-Elect, Canadian Veterinary Medical Association
Chair, 2014 CVMA Summit of Veterinary Leaders