AABP Executive Director Dr. Fred Gingrich provides an advocacy update for the membership in this episode of the AABP Have You Herd? podcast. Gingrich begins the podcast by explaining how AABP staff and volunteers work with allied organizations to advocate for veterinary issues important to cattle practitioners. He encourages our members to join AVMA to support the veterinary association that represents all veterinarians in the U.S. The AVMA Government Relations Division (GRD) is based in Washington, D.C. and has a staff the advocates both the federal and state legislative level as well as working with regulatory agencies to ensure our voice is represented.
Cattle veterinarians represent a minority of the veterinary profession. According to AVMA data, food animal and mixed animal veterinarians represent less than 10% of clinical practice veterinarians. In the past 10 years, the U.S. has seen a 22% increase in the number of clinical practice veterinarians, but a 15% decrease in the number of food animal or mixed animal veterinarians according to the AVMA Census of Veterinarians.
A grassroots effort by veterinarians is needed to make sure that representatives here our message on issues important to AABP members. Gingrich encourages members to sign up for the AVMA Congressional Advocacy Network at this link to receive messages about important issues as well as have the ability to send emails to Congressional representatives. Less than 2% of AVMA members donate to the AVMA PAC compared with 13-18% for other professional organization. Gingrich encourages AABP members who are AVMA members to donate to the PAC so that our voice is heard.
Gingrich walks listeners through the proposed rules to schedule xylazine as a controlled substance. The primary concern with this proposed regulation is loss of access to the drug due to manufacturers and distributors being unwilling to comply with the regulations, especially on a state-by-state level. AVMA and AABP have advocated for passage of the Combatting Illicit Xylazine Act which would impose federal penalties on illicit use, but maintain veterinary use as prescription. Please send an email to your Congressional representatives using the AVMA Congressional Advocacy Network system to support this bill. He also discusses the results on xylazine use survey by AABP members which can be found at this link.
The other issues discussed in the podcast are protecting the VCPR, utilizing telemedicine in bovine practice for established clients, and mobilization of credentialed veterinary technicians in bovine practice.
Please support the advocacy efforts of AABP by joining us or renewing your dues today at this link.