AVMA develops communications on pet prescriptions

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The AVMA has developed new communications regarding prescriptions for pets, comprising a message to AVMA members about working with pharmacies, a model letter to a pharmacist, and a client handout on pet prescriptions.

Your Pet's Prescription Choices handout“Like you, pharmacists are trained professionals who want to do what’s best for their clients,” states the message to members. “They receive training in advanced chemistry, biochemistry, and human physiology and pharmacology. But your local pharmacists may or may not be aware that animal physiology and pharmacology can differ significantly from that of humans, and this can lead to unintentional prescription errors and conflict.”

Refusing to write a prescription is unethical, according to the message. The AVMA has been working with pharmacy organizations to emphasize the need for pharmacists to establish and maintain a working rapport with veterinarians when it comes to filling prescriptions for pet medications.

The message also asks members to oppose federal legislation that would require veterinarians to write prescriptions even when the veterinarian dispenses the medication and encourages members to develop positive, collegial relationships with local pharmacies.

Members can access the model letter to a pharmacist as well as the client handout, “Your Pet Prescription Choices.” The handout outlines options for filling a prescription, caveats about pharmacies, and safety points.

“A message to AVMA members about working with pharmacies” is here. The message links to the model letter. The client handout is here.

Related JAVMA content:

Substitution errors (Sept. 01, 2014)

AVMA no-vote on pet prescription legislation (June 1, 2014)