A delegation led by the FDA is representing the United States in global discussions about antimicrobial resistance this week in South Korea, and the AVMA is there to help provide the veterinary practitioner’s perspective.
FDA officials asked the AVMA to send a representative as part of the U.S. delegation to the meeting of the Ad hoc Codex Alimentarius Intergovernmental Task Force on Antimicrobial Resistance. The task force is working to revise the Code of Practice to Minimize and Contain Antimicrobial Resistance, and developing guidance for integrated monitoring and surveillance of foodborne antimicrobial resistance. The task force, convened jointly by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE), is meeting Dec. 10-14 in Busan, South Korea.
Dr. Mike Costin, an assistant director in the AVMA’s Division of Animal and Public Health, is the AVMA’s representative. Just a few weeks ago, Dr. Costin also attended the OIE Global Conference on Antimicrobial Resistance.
The AVMA’s presence at meetings such as these gives U.S. veterinarians a voice in global discussions that affect our daily practice of veterinary medicine. Codex Alimentarius standards relating to food production and food safety influence federal regulations and policy in the United States and other nations. Veterinarians need to be at the table during discussions of antimicrobial use and antimicrobial resistance, and with 91,000-plus member veterinarians serving in all facets of veterinary medicine, the AVMA is a logical choice to contribute the veterinarian’s perspective.
The AVMA advocates strongly for effective antimicrobial stewardship, providing policies and resources that help veterinarians combat antimicrobial resistance. In further support of global efforts, the AVMA joined last week with the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) and Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE) to release a Joint Statement on Continuous Monitoring of Antimicrobial Use and Antimicrobial Resistance. The statement outlines strategies to preserve the effectiveness and availability of antimicrobial drugs, and safeguard animal health and welfare, public health, and the environment. In September, the AVMA also signed on to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control’s Antimicrobial Resistance Challenge, which aims to accelerate the worldwide battle against antimicrobial resistance.