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THE EVOLVING IMPORTANCE of VETERINARY MEDICINE in AQUATIC ANIMAL HEALTH MANAGEMENT. American Fisheries Society – Fish Health Section Atlantic Veterinary College, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, July 10 th , 2008. Panel Discussion Genesis.

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slide1

THE EVOLVING IMPORTANCE

of

VETERINARY MEDICINE

in

AQUATIC ANIMAL HEALTH MANAGEMENT

American Fisheries Society – Fish Health Section

Atlantic Veterinary College, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island,

July 10th, 2008

slide2

Panel Discussion Genesis

  • Ongoing discussion since the 1960’s on the role(s) of veterinarians in aquaculture health management.
  • Bacterial & microbial parasite infections in farmed salmonids… development of prescription treatments.
  • Evolution of aquaculture species diversification, intensification of production & global trade.
  • Growing need for similar support systems for farmed aquatic animals as provided for terrestrial animals.
  • The vet/non-vet debates: FAO, AFS-FHS, OIE, WAS conclude both veterinary & non-vet expertise needed.
  • Canada’s NAAHP - the search for aquatic veterinarians - 20% of national expertise recruited to federal program delivery… triggers search for more expertise to replace losses to provinces & industry.
the panel chair dr sharon mcgladdery director aquatic animal health division cfia canada
The PanelChair: Dr. Sharon McGladdery,Director, Aquatic Animal Health Division, CFIA, Canada
  • Dr. Brian Evans – Chief Veterinary Officer for Canada
  • Mr. Kevin Amos – USA National Aquatic Animal Health Plan (NAAHP) Co-Chair
  • Dr. Larry Hammell – AVC Veterinary Epidemiologist
  • Dr. Leighanne Hawkins – Cooke Aquaculture Veterinarian
  • Dr. David Scarfe – American Veterinary Medical Association
  • Dr. Ron Thune – Baton Rouge, Louisiana State University
what opportunities are out there
What Opportunitiesare ‘out there’?
  • Government
    • Federal- inspection, regulatory, policy, trade negotiation, program development.
    • Province/State- aquaculture management, outbreak/detection response coordination with industry & federal government authorities.
  • Private Practice
    • Aquaculture veterinarian– fish health management, biosecurity.
    • Consultant– research proposals, farm management advice.
    • Ornamental/Aquarium practitioner– stock management, advice,
what opportunities are there cont d
What Opportunities are there?(cont’d)
  • Corporate Veterinarian
    • Company- feed, fish farming, drug
  • Academia
    • Teaching- epidemiology, pathology, husbandry
    • Graduate Studies - finfish, molluscan, crustacean & marine mammal health
  • Diagnostics & Research
    • Laboratory work, sample collection, etc
    • New pathogens, husbandry for new species coming into domestication, risk analysis, epidemiology, etc..
slide6
Opportunities and needs for aquatic animal veterinary expertise are increasing… but actual recruitment remains limited.
  • Panel discussion revolved around:
  • Why?
  • What can be done?
  • Who should be doing this?
slide7
Why?
  • DVM’s graduate with significant financial burdens (tuition & related expenses). So, unless employment is well-funded and secure, it is not attractive to new graduates.
  • Direct aquaculture industry employment remains limited to large companies and is predominantly contractual.
  • Government employment is increasing but is less attractive to new graduates who want to work with animals directly related to their DVM training.
  • Many Veterinary Colleges do not have aquatic animal health on their curricula as a career choice during DVM training.
  • Some veterinarians undertake aquatic work as a side-duty to their principle small or large animal practice, but self identify as small/large animal practitioners (e.g., USA).
  • Most jobs in aquatic animal medicine are in rural, coastal areas; whereas, most DVM students come from urban settings.
what can be done
What can be done?
  • Self-promotion of veterinary work on aquatic animals. Some panellists noted that DVM’s tend not to self-promote. This is a tradition for all medical professions, but requires re-thinking.
  • Encourage aquatic animal industries to include DVMs in their team of expertise supporting production & encourage DVMs to work in multi-disciplinary teams (a slight paradigm shift from traditional practices).
  • Include aquatic animal health management regulation and enforcement in DVM curricula to expand Government employment options for DVMs who may have this interest.
  • Include aquatic animal health training in modules provided to graduate DVMs as an option for ongoing career development.
  • Provide training for rural & coastal community veterinarians so they can effectively include aquatic animal work as part of their small or large animal practices.
who should be doing this
Who should be doing this?
  • OIE - Continue to encourage member country Veterinary Authorities to support development of aquatic animal health infrastructures for their industries.
  • National Authorities (Veterinary, Fisheries, Enviornment, etc.) – Recruit the veterinary expertise required to build on traditional aquatic animal health resources and disciplines. Offer internships to expand DVM undergraduate employment horizons.
  • Industry – Explore the value-added of veterinary expertise as a member of core production team. Aquaculture day-to-day health management measures supports productivity & market access; Processing sector support for health certification for commodities.
  • Veterinary Associations and Colleges – Ensure training (undergraduate and for DVM professionals) includes aquatic animal health modules that support above initiatives; and aquatic industry internship opportunities.
who should be doing this continued
Who should be doing this (continued)?
  • Aquatic Veterinarians – Explore opportunities for internships for DVM students, &/or provide mentorship to DVM professionals who are considering career re-direction. Promote the picturesque settings where aquatic industries are based, and the associated life-style benefits.
  • Non-Aquatic Veterinarians – Explore aquatic options for mid-career evaluation of direction (needs training module support or mentorship as above).
who should be doing this continued11

Aquatic

Who should be doing this (continued)?
  • World Veterinary Association – Continue to include and expand aquatic animal medicine in international meetings and association information media.