Growing Forward 2 - Final Report - Page 49

Participating veterinarians felt that they would derive substantial benefit from the opportunity to continually update their expertise in this rapidly changing environment of appropriate antibiotic use through CE. This education could include topics such as rationale for appropriate antibiotic choices and use, mechanisms and implications of antibiotic resistance, pharmacology, SOPs, how to educate producers, surveillance data on antibiotic use, changes in sensitivity patterns and trends in antibiotic resistance. In addition, opportunities and best practices for educating producers, as well as the establishment of an appropriate VCPR, were thought to be important topics for the CE programs for veterinarians. QUALITY ASSURANCE FOR VETERINARIANS Participating veterinarians felt that there was a role for the CVO in the assurance to the public of appropriate use of antibiotics by Ontario veterinarians in food-producing animal practice. Ontario veterinarians are self-regulated under the Veterinarians Act, 1990 through the CVO, whose principal objective is to regulate the practice of veterinary medicine and to govern its members, in order that the public interest may be served and protected. The CVO has an additional objective to establish, maintain and develop standards of knowledge and skill among Ontario veterinarians. It was suggested by some that ongoing CE regarding antibiotic use could be required for continued licensure with the CVO, as it is in some other provinces. Further, guidelines on antibiotic use could be updated and enforced. Some participating veterinarians also suggested that there could be increased surveillance and monitoring of antibiotic use and prescribing in veterinary practices, with a requirement to report on an annual basis. A few also felt that CVO could enforce the requirement for a VCPR. CVO could provide support to veterinarians by creating documents outlining decision cascades and other aspects of appropriate antibiotic dispensing. With respect to providing antibiotics to food-producing animals, some participating veterinarians suggested that the potential perceived conflict of interest inherent in prescribing antibiotics could be addressed by ensuring prescribing is separate from drug sale profits with a decreased reliance on antibiotic sales for veterinary income. As well, rebate programs for antibiotic purchases could be restricted. Further, consideration could be made of the possibility of imposing financial penalties on veterinarians that prescribe high levels of antibiotics. Participating veterinarians felt that they would derive substantial benefit from the opportunity to continually update their expertise in this rapidly changing environment of appropriate antibiotic use through continuing education. As part of this initiative, it was suggested that the veterinary student curriculum have an increased emphasis on appropriate use of antibiotics and the development of antibiotic resistance. 49  Antibiotic Use in Food-Producing Animals in Ontario: A Study of the Current Practises and Perceptions of Ontario Veterinarians