Medication Summit Panel Moves Forward on Plan

In a Jan. 28 teleconference, representatives from about 20 racing industry organizations unanimously endorsed a plan to develop a national medication policy. Members of the Thoroughbred, Standardbred, and Quarter Horse racing industries originally met at the American  Association of Equine Practitioners' (AAEP) Racehorse Medication Summit Dec. 4, 2001, in Tucson, Ariz. They made a list of recommendations that can be found in article Quick Find #3253 at www.TheHorse.com. Teleconference participants authorized the creation of a veterinary advisory committee that will compile a list of medications regularly used to treat racehorses, and information on dosage, administration, and medical indications.

The group also authorized the National Thoroughbred Racing Association's Racing Integrity and Drug Testing Task Force to gather information and research on substances that might be considered "contaminants" in testing samples. Two advisory committees--veterinarians and chemists--will compile information on medication use. The veterinarians will identify medications and their pharmacology, while the chemists will look at drug detection. The AAEP will prepare the list of medications, and the group of representatives is in the process of selecting members of the advisory committees. The group will gauge the interest of George Maylin, DVM, PhD, director of the Equine Drug Testing Program at Cornell University, and Rick Sams, PhD, a professor of veterinary clinical science at The Ohio State University. Thomas Tobin, MVB, MSc, PhD, MRCVS, DABT, of the University of Kentucky, is another likely candidate for the veterinary advisory committee.

The Jan. 29 teleconference participants agreed that any national effort must include all breeds, and that it be "as regionally diverse as possible."

About the Author

Tom LaMarra

Tom LaMarra, a native of New Jersey and graduate of Rutgers University, has been news editor at The Blood-Horse since 1998. After graduation he worked at newspapers in New Jersey and Pennsylvania as an editor and reporter with a focus on municipal government and politics. He also worked at Daily Racing Form and Thoroughbred Times before joining The Blood-Horse. LaMarra, who has lived in Lexington since 1994, has won various writing awards and was recognized with the Old Hilltop Award for outstanding coverage of the horse racing industry. He likes to spend some of his spare time handicapping races.

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