Request for Comments and Announcement of Workshop on Pet Medications Issues, Project No. P121201 #560891-00148

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Request for Comments and Announcement of Workshop on Pet Medications Issues, Project No. P121201

We, as veterinarians, know the companies that are pushing for the simplest, cheapest way to advance profits for there companies in the lowest cost possible. These companies do not understand, and quite frankly, don't care about the implications following such a push for a change in the pet prescriptive policies. If such changes take place, many precautions and checks/balances need to be in place prior to implimenting such changes. There is no model that comes close for comparison. This is an entity all by itself. Contacts should NOT be used as a comparison. That comparison involves 1 organ of one species, that if not prescribed correctly, does not result in the death of the patient--This is not a good comparison at all!! They would like you to think that it is that easy. It's not. I will do my best to explain primary concerns in written format. 1. Human pharmacies at this point in time do not have the knowledge needed to consult with owners regarding the medications they will be filling for pets. (this has been evident working with pharmacies already) 2. Pet owners to this day have not had to worry about reputable pharmacies because the medications have come through regulated loops to make it to veterinary clinics. Most clients do not have the knowledge to determine weather or not a pharmacy is legit or is even operating legally (we have run into many problems with counterfit drugs from across seas/other countries through internet pharmacies and catalog companies. This puts all animals at risk. 3. Contrary to statements regarding overpriced veterinary medicines. Most all medications sold through our clinic are either cheaper or around the same prices as online pharmacies (although they like to tell clients that they are more inexpensive) 4. Like big business, small business also runs on the same ideas. We are not creating new jobs due to new products, we are just transfering locations. So if prices are the same and competative for drugs, then we are only going to increase the prices of veterinary services because of the increased time to prepar scripts and consult with pharmacies. Jobs will be lost in the veterinary avenue. Ultimately, the customer and the patient looses 5. In our current location, we only have about 15-30 requests per year for outside pharmacies. After clients realize that we are not "more expensive", usually they are more than happy to know that they're veterinarian is looking out for the health of there animal. Most clients requesting medications from outside pharmacies are doing so because they don't want to visit a veterinarian for a exam (that is required by law) for such medications. Others don't understand that a visit is required because they have been told on TV that they don't have to go to the veterinarian to get the medications. 6. As you can see in the very opening of the "invitation to comment", this is an intent for big business to gain more profits through "a piece of the pie". Nothing else. This isn't about the health of the animal or the customer. 7. As far as the question of fair competition is concerned, local veterinarians already compete in the areas where they have established their practices.