Acting on antibiotic resistance

Acting on antibiotic resistance

AnimalhealthEurope supports the Responsible Use of antibiotics. This means use in the context of biosecurity, good housing and ventilation, good hygiene, appropriate nutrition, regular monitoring of animal health and welfare, animal health planning, use of diagnostics, vaccination, and using and maintaining the pharmacovigilance system when necessary, as well as the use of antibiotics under veterinary prescription.

Animal health sector commitments and actions on antibiotic use

AnimalhealthEurope is a signatory of the global 'Animal health sector commitments and actions on antibiotic use'. Supported by over 200 companies and associations, and 700,000 veterinarians worldwide, the sector has agreed a set of five principles and practical actions to address the global health challenge of antibiotic resistance.

What the European animal medicines industry does to fight antibiotic resistance

For the past two decades, AnimalhealthEurope and its membership have been proactively leading the charge against the challenge of antibiotic resistance development on a number of different levels. This includes actions such as: providing input into policy tools; promoting responsible veterinary and animal health practices; awareness-raising and more. Some key actions are outlined below and highlighted in the paper linked under 'More Info'.

- Our actions -

1. ADHERING TO REGULATORY ASSESSMENT

  • All medicines undergo thorough review by the EMA including proof of efficacy & assessment of resistance risk

  • Risk management of any potential human impact

  • Application of good manufacturing practice ensuring medicines comply with quality requirements

2. COMMUNICATING RESPONSIBLE USE

  • Promoting our core message that antibiotics should always be handled responsibly and only used under prescription: “as little as possible, as much as necessary”.

  • Contributing to awareness-raising through active involvement in events organised at both EU – e.g. European Antibiotics Awareness Day - and national level.

3. ENGAGING WITH STAKEHOLDERS

  • Established a stakeholder platform with vets and farmers in 2005 to promote responsible use of medicines in animals

  • Growing engagement with stakeholders as EPRUMA membership now includes: vets; farmers and agri-cooperatives; manufacturers of animal medicines and diagnostics; feed manufacturers; professionals working in animal health, sanitary security and sustainable agriculture; and pharmacists.

  • National responsible use stakeholder platforms established in Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and the UK

4. PROMOTING DISEASE PREVENTION PRACTICES

  • Promote a “Prevention is better than cure” approach in the context of good hygiene; nutrition; prevention through vaccination; health management; etc.

  • Stakeholder platforms and members developed brochures aimed at vets, farmers and pet owners promoting best practices and responsible use.

5. HELPING DEVELOP RESPONSIBLE USE STANDARDS

  • Contributed proactively to the development of guidelines at EU level as well as internationally via Codex and the OIE, and in many European countries.

  • Contributed in time, commitment and funding to standards developed by numerous responsible use platforms.

6. CONTRIBUTING TO POLICY

  • Provided input during consultations on both the first and second EU action plans on AMR.

  • Contributed to the EMA Antimicrobial Expert Group response to a series of questions posed by the European Commission on AMR in veterinary medicine.

  • National member associations work with local authorities in member states to help form national action plans to address the challenge.

7. IMPROVING LABELLING AND PRACTICES

  • Adhering to requirements in terms of marketing and distribution of all medicines, including antibiotics.

  • Including responsible use guidelines on the labelling of medicines.

8. MONITORING, SURVEILLANCE AND USAGE STUDIES

  • Advocating more harmonised data collection

  • Backing the CEESA programme - a unique pan-European programme of monitoring resistance in foodborne and veterinary pathogens.

  • Contributing to usage studies, including the EMA’s ESVAC report, OIE usage reports, etc.

  • National members and companies contributing to national reports on use and resistance data: DANMAP (DK); SVARM (SE); VARSS (UK); etc.

  • Some member companies work directly with food producers to develop tools to help monitor and manage use of antibiotics from the very beginning of the food chain.

9. INVESTING IN R&D

  • Investing on average 8% of annual turnover in R&D to continuously provide new and improved solutions for managing infectious diseases.

  • Researching and developing innovative prevention options including vaccines, immunostimulants, or novel anti-infectives.

10. ADVOCATING LEGISLATION CONDUCIVE TO INNOVATION

  • Calling for antibiotics to be given special status in the ongoing EU revision of the legal framework for veterinary medicinal products to encourage innovation.

  • Supporting proposals for EU decision-making on the categorisation of critically important antibiotics to be entirely science-based, following the recommendations of EU scientific experts within the EMA.

  • Supporting support proposals for legislation that would curb unnecessary prophylactic use of antibiotics in livestock, provided there is no negative impact on animal health.

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More info

  • What the European animal medicines industry does to fight antibiotic resistance Download
  • Animal health sector commitments & actions on antibiotic use Download