The AVMA’s definitions of antimicrobial uses for prevention, control, and treatment of disease

Smith DR, Gaunt PS, Plummer PJ, Cervantes HM, Davies P, Fajt VR, Frey E, Jay-Russell MT, Lehenbauer TW, Papich MG, Parker TM, Phipps EC, Scheftel JM, Schnabel LV, Singer RS, Whaley JE, Wishnie JK, Wright LR, Costin M
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 254(7):792-797

Recent state and federal legislative actions and current recommendations from the World Health Organization seem to suggest that, when it comes to antimicrobial stewardship, use of antimicrobials for prevention, control, or treatment of disease can be ranked in order of appropriateness, which in turn has led, in some instances, to attempts to limit or specifically oppose the routine use of medically important antimicrobials for prevention of disease. In contrast, the AVMA Committee on Antimicrobials believes that attempts to evaluate the degree of antimicrobial stewardship on the basis of therapeutic intent are misguided and that use of antimicrobials for prevention, control, or treatment of disease may comply with the principles of antimicrobial stewardship. It is important that veterinarians and animal caretakers are clear about the reason they may be administering antimicrobials to animals in their care. Concise definitions of prevention, control, and treatment of individuals and populations are necessary to avoid confusion and to help veterinarians clearly communicate their intentions when prescribing or recommending antimicrobial use.

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