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THE veterinary profession and the agricultural industry have been placed under a lot of pressure to reduce the use of antibiotics in veterinary medicine by both the media and government. I think the responsible use of antimicrobial drugs is the way forward for the profession but I think the medical profession, the O'Neill report (Review on Antimicrobial Resistance 2016) and government have overestimated the role that antimicrobial use in animals is having on human antimicrobial resistance in the UK. The Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies, said at the 2014 BVA Congress that ‘Lack of evidence doesn't mean it doesn't happen, it just means that no one has invested in looking before’ (VR, November 29, 2014, vol 175, pp 522-523). Well, I have tried.
I think most people accept that the use of antibiotics will select for antimicrobial resistance. This is especially the case when they are given orally either …
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