Today, Governor Hogan announced that he will allow the updated Keep Antibiotics Effective Act become law!
This couldn’t have happened without our tireless and amazing sponsors – Senator Pinsky, Senator Nathan-Pulliam, and Delegate Love. Thanks also to Delegate Robinson for sponsoring the original 2017 bill (and the iterations before it).
Thanks to everyone who traveled to Annapolis to testify and lobby in support of the bill!
Maryland now has the strongest law in the land protecting antibiotics thanks to the support of all the health care, public health, labor, business, and environmental organizations including: the Maryland Nurses Association, Maryland Public Health Association, Maryland Sierra Club, 1199SEIU United Health Care Workers, Elevation Burger, the Society of Infectious Disease Pharmacists, Fair Farms, Waterkeepers Chesapeake, Maryland Conservation Council, Maryland Votes for Animals, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Maryland PIRG, and Clean Water Action.
The bill makes the following clarifications and expansion of the law to address errors in the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s prior definitions in the regulations and to help ensure proper implementation:
- Adds new definitions and clarifies definitions for key terms that will ensure that the law reduces unnecessary antibiotic use, including “administered in a regular pattern,” “Control of the spread of disease or infection,” “Elevated risk,” “Prophylaxis,” and “Treat a disease or infection.”
- Adds a technical fix to exempt dairy farms with herd size of fewer than 300, to be in line with the small farm exemptions for poultry, pork and beef.
- Adds a a requirement for veterinarians to report the use of medically important antibiotics on a yearly basis to ensure compliance with the law and track progress.