On October 4, 2013, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) released a statement on the impacts of the government shutdown. The AVMA states that crucial veterinary programs that ensure the welfare of animals and protect the public from disease are short-staffed or halted. These programs include, but are not limited to:
· the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s (APHIS) Center for Veterinary Biologics, which verifies the safety of animal vaccines before releasing them into the marketplace,
· the APHIS office that conducts inspections of animal facilities like zoos and research facilities,
· Food and Drug Administration programs that inspect dairy and seafood products,
· the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that monitor foodborne illnesses, and
· USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture funding for research conducted by veterinarians.
The AVMA implores Congress to rise above the partisan bickering “to do what is right for both Americans and our nation’s livestock and pets.”
For more information, please see the AVMA press release.