Home
Shea Cox
Print|Email|Text Size: ||
Legislative Alert
DEA action might hinder in-home vet practices

Legislative Alert: We need your help! Please Support S. 950, the Veterinary Medicine Mobility Act, to Allow Veterinarians to Continue to Transport Vital Medications for the Treatment of Animals!

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is seeking urgent modification to the current Controlled Substances Act (CSA) that was put forth by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in 1970. The CSA was designed to protect public health by preventing diversion and improper use of controlled substances, and was actually implemented with the human medical field in mind. Well, the DEA is now suddenly interpreting the wording in this 43-year old legislation and has recently deemed it illegal for veterinarians to transport controlled substances outside of the veterinarian's single registered location, typically their hospital or clinic.

What does this mean? It means that it is now illegal for veterinarians to carry and use vital medications for pain management, anesthesia and euthanasia in house calls, in veterinary mobile clinics, on farms, or in ambulatory response situations such as injured wildlife. It now prohibits mobile veterinarians, rural or farm veterinarians, and in-home euthanasia veterinarians from doing their job because of this sudden and literal interpretation of the law.  As a provider of hospice care for pets, this hits especially close to home for me: I am no longer legally able to provide adequate pain relief for my terminal patients, nor am I legally allowed to provide the the gift of a peaceful passing in the comfort of a pet's home.  The DEA has already notified veterinarians in some states (California being highly targeted) that they are in violation of this law and are being threatened with fines as well as provoking licensing.  

The DEA has officially informed organized veterinary medicine that transporting these controlled substances is illegal per the CSA and thus would require a statutory change in the law to allow “us” to legally provide complete veterinary care to our patients.    

We have met this need by introducing the Veterinary Medicine Mobility Act (S. 950), which was introduced by U.S. Senators Jerry Morgan and Angus King just this week (thank you!). This legislation would amend the current CSA and will allow us to continue to treat and meet the needs of our patients—your pets.

Can you help?  It is imperative that veterinarians be able to legally transport controlled substances to the location of our patients, and we need your support.  By clicking this link you can tell your U.S Senators that veterinarians must be able to properly care for their patients.  It takes just seconds- look for the green-colored “TAKE ACTION NOW” at the bottom and with just 1 click, you can make a world of difference for our pet family members.  
 

 

Print|Email

Veterinarian Shea Cox has enjoyed an indirect path through her professional life, initially obtaining degrees in fine arts and nursing. She later obtained her veterinary medical degree from Michigan State University in 2001 and has been practicing emergency and critical care medicine solely since that time. In 2006, she joined the ER staff at PETS Referral Center in Berkeley and cannot imagine a more rewarding and fulfilling place to spend her working hours. In her spare time, she loves to paint, wield her green thumb, cook up a storm and sail. Her days are shared with the three loves of her life: her husband Scott and their two Doberman children that curiously occupy opposite ends of the personality spectrum.

More in Shea Cox:
Arthritis in Senior Dogs
Bromethalin: not all blue-green rodenticides are the same
Hops Can Be Lethal to Dogs
Moist Dermatitis in Dogs—Hot Spots
Paraphimosis:
Cracked, Broken or Torn Nails
Hyperadrenocorticism or Cushing's Disease in Dogs:
ASPCA Poison Control Center
Leptospirosis