The role of veterinarians in keeping medicines for animals safe

Yesterday, EMA (European Medicines Agency)held the first of a series of webinars with FVE – Federation of Veterinarians of Europe on the key changes that will be brought about by the new Veterinary Medicinal Products Regulation. These webinars are an excellent opportunity to discuss important topics and strengthen engagement with animal health professionals in the EU.

The topic of the first joint webinar with the FVE was pharmacovigilance. Veterinarians play a major role in keeping veterinary medicines safe. Their commitment to reporting suspected adverse events following administration of medicines in animals contributes to improving risk management and safety monitoring in the European Union (EU). In fact, 98 % of all reports on adverse events are reported by vets.

However, underreporting of adverse events seen with veterinary medicines is a major issue. In a 2017 survey [see reference below] conducted by FVE with the support of EMA, less than half had reported an adverse event in the year running up to the survey, even though over 95% of practitioners say they have experienced suspected adverse events of veterinary medicines in their own practice.

The new veterinary medicinal products regulation contains new measures for increasing the availability and safety of medicines for animals. In the area of pharmacovigilance there is a focus on better collection and processing of safety data. The participants at today’s webinar were not only updated of the upcoming changes to the reporting of adverse events with veterinary medicines. The event provided also a platform to consider obstacles to reporting experienced by vets and discuss potential solutions to overcome them in order to encourage more and better collection of safety data.

With over 320 veterinarians joining the webinar, this was a positive start to a series of events that will facilitate exchange of know-how between EU regulators and veterinary practitioners, one of the hallmarks of the new legislation.

Source: Emer Cooke

The author:

Jack Mullen Editor of Farm Safely
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