Remaining medically important antimicrobials transitioning to prescription status

By Katie Burns
Published: 22 March 2023


The Food and Drug Administration is continuing to implement a plan to require veterinary oversight for all animal drugs that contain antimicrobials important in human medicine. The agency is doing so in an effort to guide judicious use of the products and preserve their effectiveness.

As part of the plan, the FDA is reminding stakeholders that certain over-the-counter antimicrobial products for animals are transitioning to prescription status, starting June 11.

“We believe that having a veterinarian involved is important and adds value and helps to make sure that we’re using these products as judiciously as we can,” said Dr. William T. Flynn, deputy director for science policy with the FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine.

Previously, the FDA worked with manufacturers of animal drugs to change OTC medically important antimicrobials used in the feed or drinking water of food-producing animals to be available only by veterinary feed directive or prescription, respectively, and to eliminate use of these products for production purposes such as growth promotion.

Now the remaining 4% of OTC medically important antimicrobials used in animals—both food-producing and companion animals—will require a prescription from a veterinarian.

To see the full version of this story, visit the AVMA News website.