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April 01, 2021

In Short

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Robertson Hale promoted to USPHS rear admiral

Dr. Robertson Hale
Dr. Kis Robertson Hale

Earlier this year, Dr. Kis Robertson Hale was made rear admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service, a rank equivalent to brigadier general in the Army. The promotion bears the responsibilities of a U.S. assistant surgeon general.

Dr. Robertson Hale is currently deputy assistant administrator of the Office of Public Health Science within the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service and is the agency’s chief public health veterinarian. In these roles, she oversees the science behind the regulatory agenda at FSIS and represents the agency in one-health activities.

Prior to joining FSIS, Dr. Robertson Hale was an Epidemic Intelligence Service officer with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Additionally, she was a CDC fellow in preventive medicine with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

Dr. Robertson Hale is a 2003 graduate of Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine and a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine.

Preliminary settlement reached in Hill’s lawsuit

Hill's Transforming Lives logoHill’s Pet Nutrition will pay $12.5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by pet owners who purchased canned dog foods containing excess vitamin D.

The preliminary settlement reached in early February in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas is set for a final approval hearing this July.

In 2019, Hill’s voluntarily recalled a total of 86 product lots, including 33 varieties of its canned dog food products, after it was discovered that the vitamin premix contained excessive amounts of vitamin D.

The recall started in January and expanded to include additional products and product lots in the spring. The products were manufactured by Hill’s and marketed under the Hill’s Science Diet and Hill’s Prescription Diet brands. Overall, the recalls affected slightly more than 1 million cases of dog food, or nearly 22 million cans.

A subsequent investigation by the Food and Drug Administration faulted Hill’s for failing to follow company procedures for consistently verifying the quality of ingredients in its pet foods. The company responded that it had already addressed the FDA’s concerns to avoid potential problems with its food ingredients in the future.

Education council schedules site visits

AVMA Council on EducationThe AVMA Council on Education has scheduled site visits to 11 schools and colleges of veterinary medicine for the remainder of 2021.

Comprehensive site visits are planned for Oregon State University Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine, April 4-8; the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine, April 25-29; the University of Melbourne, Melbourne Veterinary School, May 9-14; Massey University School of Veterinary Science, May 23-28; the University of Arizona College of Veterinary Medicine, July 18-22; Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine, Aug. 29-Sept. 2; Utrecht University Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Sept. 26-30; Long Island University College of Veterinary Medicine, Oct. 10-14; Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, Oct. 24-28; Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Nov. 7-11; and The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Nov. 14-18.

The council welcomes written comments on these plans or the programs to be evaluated. Comments should be addressed to Dr. Karen Martens Brandt, Director, Education and Research Division, AVMA, 1931 N. Meacham Road, Suite 100, Schaumburg, IL 60173. Comments must be signed by the person submitting them to be considered.

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