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CVMA Participates in Ministerial Roundtable on Antimicrobial Resistance

March 31, 2015

Earlier this month, Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health, met key leaders in human and animal health organizations to discuss the Government of Canada’s plan for combatting antimicrobial resistance (AMR). The release of the new Federal Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance and Use builds on the previously released Federal Framework for Action released in 2014.

The key focus of the roundtable discussion was on Antimicrobial Stewardship and the two actions listed under that focus area in the Federal Action Plan:

  1. Strengthen the promotion of the appropriate use of antimicrobials in human and veterinary medicine.
  2. Work with the animal agriculture sector partners to strengthen the regulatory framework on veterinary medicines and medicated feeds, including facilitating access to alternatives and encourage the adoption of practices in order to reduce the use of antimicrobials.

All stakeholders had agreed that more education, more advocacy and more collaboration is needed to continue the combat of antimicrobial resistance.

CVMA holds that successful antimicrobial stewardship involves the prudent use of antimicrobials. It also believes that extending veterinary oversight over antimicrobial drug use in Canada is needed in conjunction with regulatory changes. Currently, the unregulated importation, through the Own-Use Importation loophole, of animal health products for commercial use in food producing has potential for indiscriminate use. CVMA has a long-standing policy expressing concern for the unregulated importation and use of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients in animal agriculture which poses a potential risk the Canadian public health and food safety.

CVMA and all veterinarians in Canada applaud Health Canada for taking this initiative. Canadian veterinarians realize the importance of prudent use of antimicrobials and welcome the opportunity for further engagement and action with colleagues on this topic. 

For more information on the roundtable and the newly released Federal Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance and Use in Canada, click here.

The following highlights what CVMA has done to date to advocate for change and encourage the prudent use of antimicrobials in animals: