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Veterinary pharmacy

Training programme for UK farmers and vets aims to encourage responsible use of antibiotics

A training programme aimed at supporting the responsible use of antibiotics across UK farms has been launched by the National Office of Animal Health (NOAH), which represents the UK animal medicines industry.

The Animal Medicines Best Practice Programme, launched on 17 July 2018 at the House of Lords, offers farmers and vets working in the sheep, dairy, beef and pig sectors access to a range of online training modules and resource materials.

To develop the programme, NOAH worked with stakeholders across the industry, including the Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture Alliance and the Veterinary Medicines Directorate.

It is hoped that the programme will raise awareness, knowledge and understanding of antimicrobial resistance and drive best practice across UK farms.

“We know that there is a real demand for this type of accessible training and we’re delighted to be able to lead the way in making it available,” said Gaynor Hillier, chair of NOAH.

“This new collaborative, cross-sector strategy on training will support both farmers and vets, demonstrating that our farmers have the skills to use antibiotics responsibly, providing reassurance to consumers and policy makers.”

Lord Gardiner, under-secretary of state for rural affairs and biosecurity, said that recent statistics have shown a 27% drop in use of antibiotics in food-producing animals in the UK since 2014.

“Our farmers and vets must be commended for driving down antibiotic use in livestock to this all-time low — setting an excellent example for others around the world to follow,” he said. ”But it is vital we continue making progress.”

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2018.20205190

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