The Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture Alliance (RUMA) fully supports the UK Government’s Five Year Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Strategy that was launched on 10 September 2013 and has produced an action plan for the livestock sector.
RUMA Secretary General, John FitzGerald, said the Alliance had discussed the actions that will be required to implement the Strategy and had developed the action plan that has been published on the RUMA website. The plan is based on the detailed actions in Annex B of the Strategy and sets out the actions that RUMA and/or its individual member organisations will take. Inevitably, the plan is still at an early stage. RUMA members have agreed to review and record progress against the plan at RUMA’s quarterly meetings and to publish the plan and its subsequent revisions to provide an open report on how this work is developing. During these reviews new actions will be added to the plan including any identified by the high level steering group made up of DARC, ARHAI and ACMSF members set out in the Strategy as being responsible for agreeing the overall plan for its implementation.
In response to the action to improve public engagement, RUMA has published an information note on antibiotic resistance. Written in Plain English, the information note aims to:
- Explain antibiotic resistance and why it matters to human and animal health
- Set out why and how antibiotics are used in UK farms
- Identify the risks to public health from use of antibiotics in farming
- Explain the responsible use of antibiotics in farming
- Identify the changes in legislative controls (for antibiotic use in veterinary medicines and feed additives) that RUMA believes are appropriate and proportionate to manage the limited risk of antibiotic use in farm animals leading to clinical treatment problems in humans.
- RUMA Secretary General, John FitzGerald, said that the Alliance had published the information note to help all interested parties from consumers to regulators to understand the complex topic of antibiotic resistance and the use of antibiotics in livestock.
NOTES FOR EDITORS
- RUMA is an alliance of 23 organisations representing every stage of the “farm to fork” process which aims to promote a co-ordinated and integrated approach to best practice in the use of medicines on farm. For further information contact RUMA Secretary General John FitzGerald (firstname.lastname@example.org) or see the RUMA website www.ruma.org.uk
- The UK’s Five Year AMR Strategy can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-5-year-antimicrobial-resistance-strategy-2013-to-2018
- The RUMA Action Plan can be found here
- The RUMA Antibiotic Resistance Information Note can be found here
- DARC is the DEFRA Antimicrobial Resistance Co-ordination Committee; ARHAI is the Advisory Committee on Antimicrobial Resistance (a Department of Health Advisory Committee) and Healthcare Associated Infections; ACMSF is the Advisory Committee on Microbiological Safety of Food (a Food Standards Agency Advisory Committee)