Representatives of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) met with members of Congress and their staff last week to dispel misconceptions related to the risks of human antibiotic resistance. The briefings were part of AVMA’s continued efforts to shed light on the complex nature and crucial need to treat animals, and how the health of those animals affects human health through the food supply or direct contact with pets.

Lloyd Keck, a worldwide animal health consultant to the poultry industry, told congressional sources the benefits of using antibiotics to animals and people outweigh any current risk associated with bacterial resistance. He said decision makers “need to let good sense and good science guide this issue.”

AVMA and NCBA are among many organizations strongly opposing the “Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act (PAMTA)” currently under consideration in Congress. PAMTA is a proposed broad-based antibiotic ban that would keep veterinarians, ranchers, feeders and dairymen from preventing diseases in livestock. The bill ultimately would harm animal welfare, animal health and food safety.

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