Impact of livestock OTC drugs becoming prescriptions

A University of Missouri veterinarian says livestock producers need to prepare for coming changes in antibiotic availability.

Craig Payne with MU Extension tells Brownfield the Food and Drug Administration is updating several over the counter antibiotics to require a veterinarian prescription which could limit the products’ availability.

“Distributors or retailers that are selling those drugs, may not carry those any longer simply because they don’t want to have to comply with state pharmacy law requirements,” Payne said.

He said local and regional farm supply stores are likely examples.

Payne said the FDA generally changes animal availability to drugs that are also ‘medically important’ for humans.

“To bring those under veterinary oversight,” he said. “Just because of the medical importance of those drugs in human medicine. Of course, it’s all revolving around this concern over anti-microbial resistance.”

While the change won’t go into effect until June of 2023, he said producers should find a veterinarian that can write prescriptions now.

Payne said producers will likely be most impacted by drugs like penicillin and injectable oxytetracycline’s only being available by prescription. More information about the coming changes can be found on the FDA’s Website.

Craig Payne Interview
  • Livestock antibiotics should not require a prescription. Penicillin is very seldom used in humans anymore but it still works for livestock. We can’t afford a Vet prescription for every steer, pig, or chicken that need antibiotics. Contact your legislator to shut down the FDA’s tyranny.

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