Thursday, 4 September 2014
British VMD warns veterinarians over antibiotics
We are not very enthusiastic about veterinary self-regulation, under a royal charter, in Britain.
The veterinary record is appalling, in recent years, with animal disease endangering the human population, and antibiotic resistance spreading under a cover of spin, secrecy and bullying.
Britain has had too many animal and zoonotic disease epidemics to have any confidence in the existing failing veterinary regime.
The (British) Veterinary Medicines Directorate seems to be veterinarians, operating under Defra licence, attempting to keep an often arrogant profession operating legally.
However, they have recently reminded private veterinarians they might get sued if they wrongly prescribe antibiotics.
They should not need warning.
Still, the VMD have warned the private veterinarians they might face an action for compensation if they do not follow the prescribing guidelines and make some vague effort to codify the guidelines.
Although it is very unimpressive, mostly hot air and shifting responsibility, the fact that they have issued a reminder of an existing warning is real progress.
So, when the writer regularly reminds veterinarians and their cronies that "they might get their pants sued off," he is reflecting a very real risk recognised by the government.
They need to start by making sure the true level of MRSA st398 in pigs is admitted and the longevity of the problem.
There will be a massive row, but an open admission would mitigate the fall-out.
It might also save a few human lives, even their own and that's not to be sniffed at.
The VMD warning on the Defra website is here. Be sure to read in full
"…The current guidance on the use of the Cascade (VMGN No. 13) states
In departing from the clinical particulars on the SPC the veterinary surgeon must balance the benefits against the risks of doing so and thus take responsibility for their clinical decision. The potential benefits of using the product are usually obvious but the risks may not be. Risk could relate to the animal, the owner or person administering the product, consumers (where veterinary medicine residues in food might be affected), the environment and even wider public health (for example where increased selection for antimicrobial resistance might be the outcome). Any departure from the SPC must be considered carefully as the advice and warnings given are there for good reason and based on assessed data. To ignore or disregard them without due care and thought would be inappropriate and, if something goes wrong with the treatment, could lay the veterinary surgeon open to litigation…"