Brussels, 18 November 2016: EPRUMA welcomes the 9th edition of European Antibiotic Awareness Day, and takes the opportunity to reiterate its commitment to promoting the responsible use of all veterinary medicines, including antibiotics.

Cooperation between EU institutions, national authorities and key stakeholders – working in both human and animal health – is critical to ensure the responsible use of all antibiotics from a truly OneHealth approach, and to fight antimicrobial resistance. On European Antibiotic Awareness Day, EPRUMA reconfirms its firm commitment to promoting the responsible use of veterinary medicines through the collaborative work of its 10 member organisations. This includes facilitating information exchange on best practices, developing best-practice framework documents, and supporting transparency on antibiotic use through surveillance and resistance monitoring.

‘The latest EU report on the surveillance of veterinary antimicrobial consumption (ESVAC) shows a continued downwards trend of antibiotic sales for veterinary use. This is a clear indication of the veterinary sector’s sustained commitment to responsible use’, said EPRUMA’s Chairman, Rens van Dobbenburgh. ‘EPRUMA will work to further increase awareness and common understanding of the responsible use of veterinary medicines among all stakeholders, both in the EU and nationally, building on our collective work during the last 11 years’, he concluded.

EPRUMA has produced a short video featuring Rens van Dobbenburgh, where he outlines the platform’s contribution to fighting against antimicrobial resistance, and explains key elements from EPRUMA’s recent declaration on its 7 commitments to the responsible use of veterinary medicines.

The declaration crystallises 11 years of EPRUMA’s dedicated work in promoting best practices to maintain the efficacy of veterinary medicines, and both prevent and minimise adverse reactions. Through the declaration, EPRUMA partners marked their commitment to pursuing the following objectives:

  1. Promoting animal health and welfare, and by extension human health, through the responsible use of veterinary medicines (hereinafter ‘responsible use’) with a One Health approach, which links animals, people and the environment.
  2. Working together to reach the highest achievable level of animal health and an optimal balance between different elements that may have an impact on animal health, e.g. nutrition, housing, etc.
  3. Facilitating coordination and exchange of information on best practice together with national responsible use initiatives; and encouraging cooperation between public authorities and the private sector in countries where such initiatives do not yet exist.
  4. Engaging and communicating with the EU institutions and relevant agencies, European organisations and platforms working on animal health and welfare, agriculture and food, public health, as well as consumer organisations, to increase understanding of EPRUMA’s approach to best practice in the use of veterinary medicines.
  5. Developing best-practice frameworks on the responsible use of veterinary medicines, and advocating for more availability of veterinary medicines for all species in EU, as well as access to innovative medicines and diagnostic tools.
  6. Supporting transparency on the use of veterinary medicines, such as surveillance of use and resistance monitoring.
  7. Sharing knowledge by developing awareness campaigns on responsible use for operators and key stakeholders.