OVMA Responds to CVO Consultations
OVMA recently provided input into three consultations issued by the College of Veterinarians of Ontario. The three were professional practice standards on: Delegation, Telemedicine, and a report on antimicrobial resistance. In each case, OVMA responded with general support for updates to CVO’s standards, however the Association also provided the College with realistic applications to the standards as well as illustrating some areas where the standards did not fully address all possible scenarios.
OVMA also recently responded to the College’s draft report, Ontario Veterinary Stewardship of Antibiotic Use in Food-Producing Animals, a project funded by the federal and provincial governments via the Growing Forward 2 Program.
The report is an evaluation of the antimicrobial landscape with an aim to determine how and why practitioners are using antimicrobials and their thoughts on how antimicrobial resistance should be addressed. OVMA wrote to the College advocating for effective consultation with the profession and producers, as well as with some specific recommendations. The College will be using the report as a reference point as it determines what to do about antimicrobial resistance in the future.
CVO draft Professional Practice Standard on Telemedicine
CVO draft Professional Practice Standard on Delegation
CVO draft report Ontario Veterinary Stewardship of Antibiotic Use in Food-Producing Animals
Lyme Disease Update
In 2014, we reached out to the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care to encourage the provincial government to get more involved in Lyme disease prevention. This included advocating for a Lyme disease strategy that would include consultations with human and animal health experts with an aim to prevent, recognize, diagnose and treat Lyme disease in humans.
This past summer, the Ministry of Health contacted OVMA with an invitation to establish the Ministry’s Lyme disease Stakeholder Reference Group. Attendees included the Minister of Health and representatives from a wide array of stakeholders, including public health officials, the Ontario Medical Association, hunters, trail users, veterinary technicians, and groups representing Lyme patients.
The group committed to working together to advance Lyme prevention, diagnosis and treatment. In addition, there was an acknowledgement from the Minister that the human health sector has much work to do to better understand Lyme disease in humans. In addition, there was recognition of the need for more research and diagnostic tools in human health. OVMA will continue to work with stakeholders to advance Lyme disease prevention and treatment.
OVMA Works with Municipalities to Improve Local Bylaws
An OVMA member approached us about his concerns that a proposed local bylaw in the Town of Georgina to regulate kennels, duplicated some CVO regulations and did not properly serve the animals the legislation aimed to protect.
We investigated the matter and worked with the municipality to improve the bylaw to ensure there were no redundant regulations. The final bylaw included improvements that will better ensure oversight where it's needed, which will result in improved animal welfare.
The City of Mississauga also contacted us seeking expertise on animal welfare issues as the City embarked on redeveloping its bylaws that regulate standards for outdoor pets. We were asked help City Council as it considered its proposed amendments. We connected the City with a local member who has a background in animal welfare, who presented to City Council on several occasions to help them agree to a fair and balanced bylaw.
Veterinarians Act Review
As part of CVO’s strategic plan, the College has embarked on a review of Ontario’s Veterinarians Act. Enacted in the 1980s, the profession has felt that the current legislation is increasingly out of date with today's veterinary medicine.
The process will be ongoing and will focus on a number of key areas, including scope of practice, investigations and resolutions, and quality practice. We intend to be deeply involved in this process and will continue to monitor opportunities to improve animal health and day-to-day practice for veterinarians. We've named several representatives who will serve on the College’s working groups that will specialize in the priority areas for legislative reform.
Ontario Animal Health Network
The Ontario Animal Health Network (OAHN) is a program funded by the federal and provincial government, and administered by the Animal Health Lab (AHL). Its long-term goal is to establish a province-wide disease surveillance program that will be integrated into daily veterinary medicine.
OAHN Network is pleased to release the first companion animal quarterly disease report, and wildlife disease report. The report contains important information about the recent canine respiratory outbreaks, and an emerging zoonotic disease to southern Ontario, echinococcus multilocularis.
Reports can be accessed via the OAHN website in the veterinarian only log in area (sign up in one easy step here).
Those wishing to receive regular reports to their inbox should email firstname.lastname@example.org.