Vet-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR)
The FDA has issued Guidance for Industry (GFI) 263, which requires all remaining over-the-counter (OTC) medically important antimicrobial drugs used for food-producing animals to be brought under veterinary oversight.
A prescription from a licensed veterinarian will be required to access antibiotics for treating farm animals.
In order for a veterinarian to write prescriptions a Veterinary Client Patient Relationship (VCPR) is required. WAC 246-933-200 lists the requirements to establish and maintain a valid VCPR.
As part of a VCPR: the veterinarian is personally acquainted with the keeping and care of the animal(s) by virtue of an examination and/or by medically appropriate and timely visits to the premises and has assumed responsibility for making clinical judgments regarding animal care.
Additionally the veterinarian shall not establish a veterinary-client-patient relationship solely by phone or other electronic means.
By expanding the VCPR program throughout the Northwest I hope to ensure farmers and ranchers have access to a farm animal veterinarian.
There is an annual fee for this VCPR program. The VCPR program includes unlimited appropriate RX for medications, access to consulting and triage for sick animals, guaranteed response to phone/email questions concerning animal health, and access to veterinary laboratories and testing services. Exams, treatments and veterinary services for sick animals are often performed and are billed separately.
As the feed and farm stores will no longer be allowed to sell antibiotics OTC I am seeing that large drug supply companies will now be offering direct-to-farm shipping for antibiotics, supplies, and other prescriptions. With an appropriate prescription on file the drug supply companies can print RX labels and ship directly.
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