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Joint Statement: Antibiotic use in gamebirds MUST fall further - Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust on behalf of parntership organsiations

The current global crisis has emphasised the very real need to keep health services resilient. For the UK gamebird sector this means continuing to drive down all unnecessary antibiotic use.

Our focus in 2020 is to encourage all gamebird rearers to provide better husbandry for their birds and to be proactive, consulting with their vets with the aim of reducing the need to treat with antibiotics (ABs). The lower numbers being reared this year provide a great opportunity to concentrate on that.

Meanwhile, the representative bodies for the veterinary profession will be bearing down on any unlawful prescribing, for example by non-avian vets who have been pressurised by clients into writing inappropriate scripts for gamebirds. Vets should only be prescribing for birds they have physically seen and have under their care.

Download guidance (pdf) on correct prescribing procedures for gamebirds, produced by the enforcing body, the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS). Please make sure that all your relevant contacts within the gamebird sector are aware of this document. If all the antibiotic used in 2020 is prescribed correctly, we will see further significant falls.

Click through for more new recommendations to bring down AB use this year.

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