Veterinarians Take to Capitol Hill

Veterinarians Take to Capitol Hill

Nearly 100 veterinarians took to the nation’s capital earlier this week to discuss farm bill priorities. While lawmakers are on break this week, the American Veterinary Medical Association held its annual fly-in to meet with congressional offices. Vets are asking Congress to help prevent animal disease outbreaks by establishing and funding a three-pronged measure, including an animal pest, disease and disaster prevention and response program, a stronger national animal health laboratory network, and a U.S. livestock vaccine bank with immediate priority to foot-and-mouth disease.

AMVA President Michael Topper says decisions by Congress will ultimately “determine whether veterinarians are able to afford their educations and effectively do their jobs.” The veterinarians are also seeking congressional support for AVMA’s Higher Education Act principles, with a focus on preserving Public Service Loan Forgiveness and loan options through Grad PLUS. These programs, the association says, play a vital role in enabling veterinarians to fund their educations, which is increasingly important as veterinary debt has risen.