December 15, 2008

 

 Resolutions on agenda for HOD winter session - December 15, 2008

 

 

posted December 1, 2008

 

The AVMA House of Delegates may consider 10 resolutions at its winter session this January in Chicago.

In the past, the HOD acted on proposed AVMA policies only at its session in July. But recent revisions to the AVMA Bylaws allow business to be conducted at the January session.

These latest resolutions deal with issues ranging from veterinary student debt relief and antimicrobial resistance to the Veterinary Leadership Experience and council service terms.  

Resolution 1, submitted by the South Carolina Association of Veterinarians and American Association of Food Hygiene Veterinarians

Veterinary Student Loan Debt Relief

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association urge the United States Department of Agriculture to make student loan debt relief available for veterinary diagnosticians and veterinarians pursuing residencies and advanced degrees who work in food animal veterinary diagnostic laboratories."
    The Executive Board and House Advisory Committee recommended the HOD approve Resolution 1. 
 
Resolution 2, submitted by the House Advisory Committee

Council Term Length

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) House Advisory Committee be directed to develop and propose AVMA Bylaws amendments to change the term of service of Council members (with the exception of the Council on Education) from a six year term to a three year term with an allowance to permit a member to serve two consecutive terms."
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD disapprove Resolution 2, but the HAC recommended its approval. 

 

Resolution 3, submitted by the House Advisory Committee

Submittal of Resolutions by HOD Reference Committees

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Manual of the House of Delegates be revised to allow reference committees to submit resolutions that pertain to the business of the committee, for consideration by the House of Delegates."
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD disapprove Resolution 3, but HAC recommended its approval.  

 

Resolution 4, submitted by the House Advisory Committee, American Association of Food Hygiene Veterinarians, and National Association of Federal Veterinarians

USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service Chief Veterinary Public Health Officer

    "RESOLVED, that the AVMA urge the United States Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) reestablish and fill the position of Chief Veterinary Public Health Officer."
    The Executive Board and HAC recommended the HOD approve Resolution 4.  
 
Resolution 5, submitted by the House Advisory Committee

Temporary Reclassification to At-Large Positions

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical House of Delegates delete the following paragraph from the House Manual:
    Election Procedures–Council Members
    If by February 1 (COE) or April 1, there are no eligible candidates for a pending vacancy on an AVMA council that is restricted to individuals representing a particular professional classification, then the vacancy will automatically be designated as open to all AVMA members at large for the subsequent term. In this instance, the Executive Vice President will notify all organizations represented in the House of Delegates of the temporary reclassification of the vacancy. Nominations of candidates for any such vacancy must be submitted on a prescribed nomination form to the Executive Vice President no later than May 1 (COE) or July 1. Following completion of the term of the individual elected to this temporarily reclassified position, the position will revert to its original classification.
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD approve Resolution 5. The HAC sent the resolution to the HOD without a recommendation.  

 

Resolution 6, submitted by the American Association of Avian Pathologists, American Association of Bovine Practitioners, American Association of Small Ruminant Practitioners, American Association of Swine Veterinarians, and the Alabama VMA

Amend the AVMA Policy "Antimicrobials in Livestock Feed" to Proactively Address the Issue of Antimicrobial Resistance Through Science Based Risk Analysis

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) amend its policy on "Antimicrobials in Livestock Feeds" as shown below (additions are underlined and deletions are struckthrough)"
    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves antimicrobials used in livestock feeds to prevent, control, or treat certain diseases (therapeutic uses); or to promote growth or increase feed efficiency. The availability and effectiveness of antimicrobials are important for maintaining the health and welfare of food producing animals and ensuring human food safety. The AVMA believes that livestock producers and veterinarians should have availability of FDA-approved antimicrobials for administration in livestock feeds in accordance with the labeled directions.
    The AVMA supports a transparent FDA drug approval process that is rigorous and based on substantial scientific evidence supported by data and that includes an assessment of food safety. The AVMA believes FDA must continue to rely on robust antimicrobial resistance surveillance (e.g., National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System) and on science to evaluate possible public health impacts. Because of the national interest in ensuring food safety and public health and because of the interstate movement of animals and products in modern food production, the AVMA believes that a nationally coordinated effort is the only way to effectively address the issue of antimicrobial resistance.
    All regulatory or legislative actions should be transparent and based on scientific risk analysis. Risk analysis should continue to evaluate the risks and benefits to animal health and welfare in addition to the risks and benefits to human health attributed to uses in animals. Risk analysis includes risk assessment, risk communication, and risk management actions that are commensurate with the level of actual risk. Risk management options are not limited to withdrawal of approval for a drug product, but can also include continued approval of use; review by the Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee; and limitations of use such as use in only certain species or changing to a Veterinary Feed Directive drug.
    The AVMA urges veterinarians to work with all livestock producers to implement judicious use guidelines and to encourage the implementation of food animal quality assurance programs such as Dairy Quality Assurance (DQA), Beef Quality Assurance (BQA), Pork Quality Assurance (PQA), and Take Care – Use Antibiotics Responsibly. The AVMA also recommends that veterinarians assist food animal producers in reviewing and assessing the uses of antimicrobials in livestock feed. Veterinarians should also recommend preventive practices to minimize antimicrobial need.
    The AVMA recognizes that more data are needed to complete a risk analysis on the public health significance of all many antimicrobial uses in livestock feeds. The AVMA supports access to the data and actions necessary to conduct an accurate scientific risk assessment to facilitate risk-based decisions concerning the appropriate and judicious use of antimicrobials. We urge the FDA and other public health agencies, as well as veterinarians, and livestock producers, and pharmaceutical companies, to cooperatively support scientific studies needed to close the data gaps. The AVMA seeks input and support for a concerted and coordinated effort to obtain the data necessary to conduct assessments to enable risk-based decisions concerning use.
    The AVMA concludes that currently there is not enough evidence to justify legislative or regulatory prohibition of classes of use of antimicrobials in livestock feeds, whether for therapeutic use or for improving animal growth and feed conversion. All regulatory or legislative actions should be transparent and based on scientific risk analysis.
    The AVMA recognizes the importance of antimicrobials that are also used in human medicine. To further safeguard public health and to maintain the long-term effectiveness of antimicrobials, the AVMA supports a science based medical evaluation to determine the appropriate use of such antimicrobials in animals. If determined through a risk analysis, the use of such antimicrobials should be authorized by and under the control and direction of a veterinarian. Veterinarians are professionally educated, trained, and licensed, and should retain primary responsibility for the use of important antimicrobials. The AVMA emphasizes the importance of the role of the veterinarian, the existence of a veterinarian-client-patient relationship, and the appropriate and judicious use of antimicrobials in animals.
    The AVMA urges veterinarians to continually assess and critically review the uses of antimicrobials in livestock feed. Veterinarians should also recommend preventive practices to minimize the need for antimicrobials.
    The AVMA welcomes stakeholder input and cooperation.
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD approve Resolution 6. The resolution was submitted after the HAC meeting Nov. 2-4.   

 

Resolution 7, submitted by the Missouri, Rhode Island, and Florida VMAs

Funding for Continued Support of the AVMA Veterinary Leadership Experience

    "RESOLVED, that the AVMA continue to provide support for the AVMA Veterinary Leadership Experience (AVMA VLE) for four additional years (2010-2013) after the current support ends with the conclusion of the 2009 AVMA VLE."
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD approve Resolution 7. The resolution was submitted after the HAC meeting Nov. 2-4.  

 

Resolution 8, submitted by the Alabama VMA

Non-Weighted Voting on Animal Welfare Resolutions for Informational Purposes Only

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) will allow non-weighted voting for informational purposes only in the House of Delegates following official weighted voting on Animal Welfare Resolutions for a period of up to three years."
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD disapprove Resolution 8. The resolution was submitted after the HAC meeting Nov. 2-4.  

 

Resolution 9, submitted by the New Jersey and Maine VMAs

Amend Policy on "Antimicrobial Use in Animal Feeds"

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) amend the policy on "Antimicrobial Use in Animal Feeds" to state:
    The AVMA Policy on Antimicrobial Use in Animal Feeds emphasizes the importance of the role of the veterinarian, the existence of a valid veterinarian-client-patient relationship, and the appropriate and judicious use of antimicrobials in animals for the treatment, prevention, and control of disease. In particular, the AVMA recognizes the importance of antimicrobials that have human medical and public health impact. The AVMA supports a medical and science based evaluation by a licensed veterinarian in which the veterinarian determines the appropriate use of such antimicrobials. The veterinarian is professionally educated, trained, and licensed, and should retain primary responsibility in prescribing antimicrobials with regard to appropriate choice, dosage, duration, and evaluation of effectiveness.
    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves antimicrobials used in livestock feeds to prevent, control, or treat certain diseases (therapeutic uses). The FDA also approved antimicrobial use to promote growth or increase feed efficiency in the past, but although applications may be submitted, none have been approved in many years. The availability and effectiveness of antimicrobials are important for maintaining the health and welfare of food producing animals and ensuring human food safety. The AVMA believes that FDA approved antimicrobials for administration in livestock feeds must be used in accordance with the labeled directions. To that end, the AVMA seeks a revision of label statements that pre-date the current accepted standards of testing for safety and efficacy to bring them in compliance with currently accepted standards for risk assessment.
    The AVMA supports a transparent FDA drug approval process that is rigorous and based on substantial scientific evidence supported by data and that includes an assessment of food safety. The AVMA believes FDA must continue to rely on robust antimicrobial resistance surveillance (e.g., National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System) and on science to evaluate possible public health impacts. Because of the national interest in ensuring food safety and public health and because of the interstate movement of animals and products in modern food production, the AVMA believes that a nationally coordinated effort is the only way to effectively address the issue of antimicrobial resistance.
    All regulatory or legislative actions should be transparent and based on scientific risk analysis. All current and future antimicrobials for use in animal feeds should conform to current standards including but not limited to the Veterinary Feed Directive or Guideline for Industry #152 of the FDA. Response to the risk analysis, once determined, should be commensurate with the level of actual risk. Risk management options include withdrawal of approval for a drug product; continued approval of use; review by the Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee; amendment of the label claim and direction for use; and limitations of use such as use in only certain species or changing to a Veterinary Feed Directive drug. Risk analysis should continue to evaluate the risks and benefits to animal health and welfare in addition to the risks and benefits to human health attributed to uses in animals.
    The AVMA recognizes that additional data are needed to conduct on-going risk analyses on the public health significance of many antimicrobial uses in livestock feeds. We urge the FDA and other public health agencies, as well as veterinarians, livestock producers, and pharmaceutical companies, to cooperatively support the indicated changes derived from scientific studies and compliance with modern FDA rules and guidelines. The AVMA seeks input and support for a concerted effort to utilize current knowledge and research and to conduct additional assessments concerning use and potential label changes on previously approved products.
    The AVMA urges veterinarians and the FDA to review and assess the uses of antimicrobials in livestock feed. Veterinarians should also recommend preventive practices to limit antimicrobial use for treatment, prevention, and control of disease.
    The AVMA welcomes stakeholder input and cooperation
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD disapprove Resolution 9. The resolution was submitted after the HAC meeting Nov. 2-4.

 

Resolution 10, submitted by the AVMA Executive Board

Veal Calf Management

    "RESOLVED, that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) adopt the following policy titled "Veal Calf Management," which will supersede the current policies "Veal Calf Welfare" and "Veal Calf Housing:"
    VEAL CALF MANAGEMENT
    Individual housing during the neonatal period facilitates sanitation, disease control and individual attention for observation and treatment. Individual housing must allow the calf to turn around comfortably and to assume normal postures.
    Calves should be housed in groups by 10 weeks of age to facilitate normal behaviors, including social interaction. Like individual housing, group housing must allow all calves to turn around comfortably and to assume normal postures.
    Calves must be fed diets that provide adequate energy, protein and minerals to maintain good health and positive growth. Diets must be balanced to prevent nutritional deficiencies and their consequences, including but not limited to iron deficiency with subsequent anemia. Water must be provided from birth. Dry feed must be provided for rumen development and to allow the normal process of rumination. All calves must be fed colostrum after birth.
    Housing must be ventilated to provide fresh air and to prevent buildup of ammonia or pathogens. Floors and bedding must be clean, dry and maintained to prevent injuries, and allow calves to maintain normal body temperature in cold weather.
    The Executive Board recommended the HOD approve Resolution 10. The resolution was submitted after the HAC meeting Nov. 2-4. Consideration by the HOD will require a two-thirds vote by delegates to waive the 60-day deadline for submission because the board met after the Nov. 11 deadline for submission of resolutions.

The resolutions and their respective backgrounds can be viewed by clicking on the About the AVMA bar and then on "House of Delegates Winter Session Resolutions—January 2009" on the AVMA Web site (www.avma.org).