Keeping Antibiotics Effective - An Update and Call to Action
Last year, we worked with the Keep Antibiotics Working Coalition to mobilize to phase out the practice of feeding healthy animals antibiotics. In the United States, approximately 70% of antibiotics human use are sold for use on animals. These drugs are often fed to animals that aren't sick in order to prevent disease. This routine use of antibiotics contributes to the breeding and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. These bacteria can then travel off the farm and into our communities.
Ultimately, the General Assembly passed the Keep Antibiotics Effective Act, which passed without Governor Hogan's signature in 2017.
The Hogan Administration has finally released its draft regulations to implement the law, and these regulations are so weak that we are concerned that the overuse of medically important antibiotics on Maryland farms will continue. As written, the regulations appear not to prohibit the routine administration of antibiotics for disease prevention but instead prohibits uses of antibiotics that are already illegal.
Now is the time for groups like Clean Water Action and our members to get on record asking Governor Hogan to protect public health by strengthening the regulations to address antibiotic misuse in livestock.
We have until September 4th to submit comments on these draft regulations. Please tell Governor Hogan to strengthen the rules!