The President signed into law a bill that makes it legal for veterinarians to provide medical care to their equine patients beyond their clinics and across state lines.
The Veterinary Medicine Mobility Act amends restrictive language within the Controlled Substances Act, which kept veterinarians from carrying and using controlled substances in the field. These necessary medicines are often used to manage horses’ pain, as anesthesia, and to euthanize equines in distress.
“By passing and signing this legislation, the president and our legislators recognize the critical role veterinarians play in treating sick animals and relieving their pain and suffering… The health and welfare of our nation’s wildlife, food animals, and even our companion animals depend on veterinarians being allowed to do their jobs wherever the need arises,” said Dr. Ted Cohn, president of the AVMA. “As veterinarians, we promise to use our medical expertise for the protection of animal health and welfare and the prevention and relief of animal suffering.
The new language reads, “a registrant who is a veterinarian shall not be required to have a separate registration in order to transport and dispense controlled substances in the usual course of veterinary practice at a site other than the registrant’s registered principal place of business or professional practice, so long as the site of transporting and dispensing is located in a state where the veterinarian is licensed to practice veterinary medicine and is not a principal place of business or professional practice.”
The Veterinary Medicine Mobility Act (H.R. 1528) was sponsored by the only two veterinarians serving in Congress – Reps. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) and Ted Yoho (R-Fla.) – and passed in the U.S. House on in early July. The bill mirrored a version (S. 1171) that passed in the Senate earlier this year, sponsored by Sens. Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) and Angus King (I-Maine).