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Vets ‘must act now’ on antimicrobial resistance

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‘WE have no doubt that there will be pressure from some quarters to restrict or limit the veterinary use of antibiotics, as concern about antimicrobial resistance continues to grow. We must protect our privileges, but not blindly.

‘We cannot pay lip service to this global challenge; we must act now and we must have a genuine belief in doing the right thing and taking responsibility.’

So said Robin Hargreaves, the BVA President, in his end-of-year address during BVA Members' Day, which was held in Manchester last week. The event at the Midland Hotel on September 25, also featured the Association's annual general meeting and awards ceremony, and a keynote address from Allen Parton, founder of the charity Hounds for Heroes.

The BVA's new officer team for 2014/15: (from left) Sean Wensley, junior vice-president, John Blackwell, President, and Robin Hargreaves, senior vice-president

Noting that the European Commission had recently published proposals for new legislation on veterinary medicines and medicated feedingstuffs (VR, September 20, 2014, vol 175, p 262), Mr Hargreaves warned that, while the BVA had taken a lead in promoting the responsible use of antimicrobials, every individual veterinary surgeon needed to ensure they were playing their part in combating resistance.

‘If we don't, something will be inflicted upon us because of the inevitable conclusion that “something must be done”,’ he said,

Describing some of the other issues that had occupied his year as president, he commented: ‘It will come as no surprise that one of the biggest challenges I have faced this year is in managing our response to the pilot badger culls …

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