During a recent workshop hosted by the Federal Trade Commission, the AVMA strongly defended the veterinary profession and spoke out against a proposed federal mandate on prescription writing. Invited panelists explored competition and consumer protection issues in the pet medication industry.
Our appearance at the October 2 workshop was a continuation of our opposition to H.R. 1406, also known as the Fairness to Pet Owners Act, and our unwavering commitment to pet health, pet owners and their freedom to choose where they fill prescriptions for their pets, without placing an unnecessary burden on veterinary practices.
The workshop brought together a number of veterinary experts, including Dr. Doug Aspros, AVMA president; Adrian Hochstadt, the AVMA’s director of state legislative and regulatory affairs; Dr. Link Welborn, the chair of the AVMA’s Veterinary Economics Strategy Committee; and several others representing veterinary medicine, veterinary practitioners and the pet medications industry. In addition, many of the approximately 150 in the audience were veterinarians.
Each of the guests shared their expertise on the distribution of pet medications and whether or not H.R. 1406 is necessary. The AVMA believes the legislation is unnecessary and redundant, especially since many states already require prescription portability, and because the AVMA’s Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics state that veterinarians should provide clients with a written prescription when requested.
More than 500 comments – mostly from veterinarians and their associations – about the pet medications industry have been submitted to the FTC as the agency seeks public input on the issue. The comment period has been extended to November 1, and we encourage all veterinarians to add their voices and experiences to those of their colleagues by commenting on the FTC site. You can view a video of the workshop on the FTC website, and a press release summarizing the day’s events can be found in the AVMA Press Room.