Lawmakers Send Bill To Curb Antibiotic-Resistant Diseases to Brown
California lawmakers have advanced a bill (SB 27) that would limit the amount of antibiotics used on livestock, which can contribute to antibiotic-resistant diseases among humans, Capital Public Radio's "KXJZ News" reports.
According to CDC, two million U.S. residents contract antibiotic-resistant illnesses annually (Orr, "KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 9/16). CDC has listed antibiotic resistance as a top health threat facing the nation.
Avinash Kar, a senior attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council's Health and Environment Program, wrote in a blog post, "Any use of antibiotics, whether in human medicine or animal agriculture, can contribute to antibiotic-resistant bacteria, but medically important antibiotics given routinely at low doses to whole herds or flocks of animals are significantly more risky" (Kar, "Switchboard," NRDC, 9/14).
Meanwhile, Jason Pfeifle, with consumer advocacy group CALPIRG, said, "Antibiotic-resistance is a serious health crisis which results in nearly 23,000 American deaths each year."
Details of Bill
The bill would require medications given to livestock to be approved by a veterinarian starting in 2018. It also would eliminate over-the-counter sales of drugs for livestock.
Justin Oldfield -- with the California Cattlemen's Association, which is neutral on the bill -- said, "The bill does allow veterinarians and ranchers working in collaboration with each other to ensure that antibiotics can still be used for, not only disease treatment, but prevention where appropriate."
The bill now heads to Gov. Jerry Brown (D) ("KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 9/16).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.