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Canadian Veterinarians Tackle Growing Concern about Antibiotic Resistance’s Impact on the Veterinary Community

This article was originally published by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association.

Niagara Falls, Ont. - Veterinarians from across Canada gathered in Niagara Falls, Ont. at the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) Summit to discuss the growing concern about antibiotic resistance in both veterinary and human medicine, and the new reality it creates for the veterinary profession: the need for increased oversight of antibiotic use in animals. 

In 2015, the Public Health Agency of Canada announced Health Canada’s Veterinary Drugs Directorate would introduce new federal regulations requiring veterinary oversight of antibiotics used in food animals, including those administered in feed or water. The changes are anticipated for the end of 2017. 

“The anticipated changes in regulation and federal policy will have a profound impact on veterinary healthcare professionals and the veterinary practice,” says Dr. Nicole Gallant, CVMA President. “Today’s discussions allowed key stakeholders from the veterinary community, producer groups and regulators to work together and openly discuss the issue and find solutions.” 

The CVMA, in close collaboration with the Canadian Council of Veterinary Registrars (CCVR), presented a draft document at the all-day Summit, titled, “Veterinary Oversight of Antimicrobial Use – A Pan-Canadian Framework for Professional Standards for Veterinarians.” 

The objective of the Framework is to provide a template of professional standards for Canadian provincial and territorial veterinary regulatory (licensing) bodies to use in developing regulations, guidelines, or bylaws related to the professional responsibilities of veterinarians to provide oversight on antimicrobial use. 

“It is very clear that food animal producers and veterinarians must work together to ensure the prudent use of antimicrobials,” says Mr. Rob McNabb, General Manager, Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. “Our collective objectives must address antimicrobial resistance while preserving our ability to treat animal disease.”

Feedback from the Summit discussions will align the finalization of the document to be complete before the federal regulations are in effect. 

The CVMA Summit took place during the 2016 CVMA Convention, running until July 10. Its scientific program features more than 35 highly-rated speakers from Canada and the United States. Topics include anesthesia, pain management, ophthalmology, nutrition and infectious diseases. 

The convention program is approved by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards’ Registry of Approved Continuing Education program that applies uniform standards to providers and programs of continuing education in veterinary medicine. 

An annual awards luncheon also took place on July 7, recognizing individuals and groups for their outstanding contribution to veterinary medicine.

CVMA is the national and international voice for approximately 13,685 veterinarians in Canada. The convention is held in collaboration with the Registered Veterinary Technologists and Technicians of Canada.

The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) is the national and international voice for Canada’s veterinarians, providing leadership and advocacy for veterinary medicine. Visit to learn more about CVMA.

Tanya Frye, Canadian Veterinary Medical Association
613-236-1162 ext. 128 (office)
On site: 613-302-2671
[email protected]