Vet medicines: ‘Several options open’ to minister

According to the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA), Minister of Agriculture, Food and Navy, Charlie McConalogue, “has several options” to address the impending problems of prescribing and selling veterinary medicines.

As of January 1 of next year, anthelmintic (anti-parasitic) medications must be prescribed by the veterinarian before they can be purchased.

This has led to a variety of concerns, particularly the impact on other suppliers of these medicines, including licensed distributors.

Pat Farrell, chairman of IFA’s animal health organization, said the minister “must provide a practical and workable solution for all concerned”.

Farrell argued that Secretary McConalogue and his officials were “very aware” of the reluctance of farmers, licensed dealers and animal pharmacies to place control in the hands of a service provider who, as Farrell claimed, had “a viable economic interest in supplying them Products ”. “.

“In Northern Ireland and our main export market, the UK, there is no need to have a veterinarian involved in prescribing these products,” said Farrell.

“In the EU legal text of the Veterinary Medicines Regulation, there is a lot of leeway to offer a practicable solution for all parties.

“To solve this problem, we need to make sure that farmers can get these products in a competitive market. Licensed dealers and veterinary pharmacies must continue to play a crucial role in advising, instructing and selling anti-parasitic products, ”said the IFA Animal Health Director.

He stressed that defining these products as prescription-only products would place the prescriber in a “dominant supply position”, which he believed would have particular implications in areas where there was little or no competition for veterinary services for livestock.

“The minister has several options for solving this problem. If we are serious about implementing a coordinated national anti-parasite program, everyone involved must have the opportunity to actively participate. “

Farrell says advances in analytics and laboratory testing allow for a better, more focused approach to prescribing and use, rather than assuming that only the vet will be able to prescribe.

“Farmers fully support the better and more targeted use of anti-parasitic products; However, this is not achieved when control is in the hands of a prescribing doctor who has a significant economic interest in supplying these products, ”he argued.

“It is up to the minister to take into account the views of the vast majority of stakeholders. It must provide a practical and workable solution to ensure that farmers continue to have a competitive system to purchase anti-parasitic products on their farms when needed, ”concluded Farrell.

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