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September 15, 2020

Delegates revise policies on transport of research animals, antiparasitic resistance

Published on August 26, 2020

The AVMA House of Delegates approved revisions to AVMA policies on transportation of research animals and on antiparasitic resistance during the regular annual session of the HOD in late July.

The AVMA Animal Welfare Committee had reviewed the AVMA policy on “Transportation of Research Animals for the Purpose of Research, Testing, and Education” because of the directive that all policies be reviewed every five years.

The HOD approved changes that included adding language stating that veterinarians should be involved in the evaluation of transportation methods for research animals and that air and ground transportation should be available to allow for selection of the best method to provide for animal welfare.

“In recent years, there have been very severe restrictions put on the air transportation of certain species due to pressures from outside groups,” said Dr. William Stokes, delegate for the American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioners, in an HOD reference committee. For instance, very few airlines worldwide will transport nonhuman primates for research. “When air transportation is advantageous to the welfare of the animal because you can get it to a place much faster than by ground transportation or even ship transportation, the biomedical research community and the veterinary laboratory animal community would really like to have better access to air transportation.”

The AVMA Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents reviewed the AVMA policy “Antiparasitic Resistance” also in accordance with the five-year review directive. The HOD approved changes to delete a list of parasites known to have developed resistance to common parasiticides because the list is not exhaustive and to recommend that veterinarians lead the decision-making process regarding use of parasiticides and that studies of antiparasitic drug susceptibility be considered in decision-making.