On April 17-18, 2018 in Moscow, on the basis of the Rosselkhoznadzor subordinate FGBI “All-Russian State Center for Quality and Standardization of Veterinary Drugs and Feed" (FGBI "VGNKI ") and with the support of the OIE Regional Office in Moscow, the Fifth Meeting of the Target Group of the OIE Regional Commission for European Region was held. The delegation that took part in the meeting included representatives of Russia, Belarus, Germany, Austria, Serbia, Georgia, Belgium, Britain, Switzerland, Kazakhstan and Latvia.
On the sidelines of the event the importance of developing a consolidated position of the countries of the European region on animal welfare through knowledge sharing, increasing the level of communication, as well as fruitful and continuous cooperation between veterinary services was discussed.
During the meeting, issues related to updating the information on the new OIE regional website, designed to accumulate information on national legislation in the welfare of animals in the European region, were considered. The participants also discussed organization of trainings and seminars on the application of animal welfare principles during long-distance transportation of animals by sea and land as stated in the OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code. Four online trainings have already been organized on this matter, specialists from 8 countries have been trained. Increased attention was paid to coordinating the positions of countries on draft provisions and standards of the OIE Terrestrial and Aquatic Animal Health Codes that will be proposed for adoption at the OIE General Session in May this year.
A separate topic of the dialogue was control of African swine fever and other transboundary animal diseases that is relevant for many countries in the European region. Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Russian Federation Yevgeny Nepoklonov stressed the importance of the countries’ openness, the use of equivalent measures for protection from biological threats and the continuous attention of the state veterinary services to issues related to animal health and the maintenance of epizootic well-being. In this context Head of the OIE Regional Representation in Moscow Kazimiras Lukauskas drew the attention of the OIE experts to high importance of strict border veterinary control, including the suppression of attempts to illegally transport food products not only in consignments, but also in luggage and hand luggage of travelers.
At the meeting aspects of controlling the population of stray dogs with regard to rabies, which annually kills about 60,000 people in developing countries, were discussed. An equally important topic was brucellosis control in animals. On the last issue, the Russian side provided a presentation on methods for disease detection, prevention tools and current documents regulating the procedure for anti-brucellosis measures in Russia, and a number of initiatives that would allow a more effective control of brucellosis spread.
The Russian side also focused on the global problem of the stability of antimicrobials. It was noted that the Strategy for the Prevention of the Spread of Antimicrobial Resistance for the period until 2030 was developed in Russia, which presupposes the improvement of preventive measures for the spread of resistant pathogens, raising public awareness of the proper use of antimicrobial drugs and regulating their use, as well as introduction of systemic monitoring of the situation, and development of new classes of substances for the treatment of humans and animals.
Russia plans to adopt measures on antibiotic resistance reduction in close cooperation with the international community, taking into account the recommendations of international organizations such as the WHO and the OIE.
A special role in the implementation of this Strategy and the National Implementation Plan is assigned to the Rosselkhoznadzor subordinate FGBI "VGNKI" which implements the program for monitoring the antibiotic resistance of zoonotic bacteria and establishes cooperation with the Smolensk Research Institute of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy to work on the "Antibiotic Resistance Map" database.
During the discussion of this issue Director of the FGBI “VGNKI” Vyacheslav Nikulin stressed that an important aspect in addressing the problem of antibiotic resistance would be the introduction of veterinary drugs prescription release in drugstores and informed about imminent creation of a system for issuing electronic prescriptions in the veterinary field in Russia with the aim of analyzing the risk in this direction and ensuring traceability.
In conclusion, the meeting of the Fifth Meeting of the Target Group of the OIE Regional Commission in the European region was held to discuss potential candidates for the Council of the organization. The delegates concluded that the present structure of the council could be fully retained due to sufficient experience and all the necessary qualifications of the members.