The Coalition for Animal Health is speaking up against Congress' proposed ban involving use in food-producing animals. Specifically, as a follow up to last week's hearings on the subject, the American Meat Institute this week asked Congressional leaders to ensure that H.R. 1549, the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act, or any part thereof, is not added to pending legislation, particularly the food-safety bill or the health-care-reform bill. Inclusion in either are very likely tactics.

 The proposed H.R. 1549 bill seeks to amend and redefine “Critical Antimicrobial Animal Drugs” and “Nontherapeutic Use” as they pertain to animal health.  This bill also rescinds the approval of a list of seven “critical antimicrobial animal drugs” unless the sponsor demonstrates there is a reasonable certainty of no harm to human health from the development of antimicrobial resistance from “nontherapeutic” use of the drug.

“The food-safety bill and the health-care-reform bill are based on the important principle of prevention,” states the Coalition in a letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md). “It would be ironic and inconsistent to add an amendment that would remove important tools for disease prevention used in veterinary medicine.”

Click here to read the coalition's letter.

To read more on this topic: FDA would limit antibiotics and What’s the big deal about animal antibiotic usage?