Equine vets urged to think twice about antibiotic use

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The responsible use of antibiotics will be in the spotlight this weekend as European Antibiotic Awareness Day is marked this Saturday, and it has the support of the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA).

BEVA is giving free online access to its antimicrobial Congress session with two lectures from the 2017 BEVA Congress: Antimicrobial resistance – One Health gets serious presented by Professor the Lord Trees and Antimicrobial use in equine practice presented by John Marshall.

Antimicrobial resistance is an emerging clinical problem, recognised internationally as one of the largest threats to human and animal health.

All major health and veterinary organisations are working to try to limit the development of resistance so that effective antimicrobials can be retained for use in clinical practice.

BEVA is a consistent campaigner for the responsible use of antibiotics; last year it introduced the BEVA Antibiotic Champion Award to encourage members to document their efforts to reduce the use of critically important antibiotics. In 2015 the Association received a national Antibiotic Guardian award from Public Health England and was the only organisation from the veterinary profession to be shortlisted. In 2012 BEVA launched the Protect ME antimicrobial campaign to facilitate compliance and educate the public about the importance of antimicrobial awareness.

Professor Josh Slater, Chair of BEVA’s Health & Medicines Committee said European Antibiotic Awareness Day was an excellent time for the profession to reflect on its successes in improving antibiotic prescribing and also an opportunity to plan for future improvements in antimicrobial stewardship.

“BEVA’s antibiotic champion award is a chance to recognise the massive contribution that equine vets have made in changing prescribing behaviours, in particular relating to critically important, or ‘protected’, antibiotics,” Slater said.

In 2015, the Equine Veterinary Journal released a special online collection of articles on antimicrobials.

 

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