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    Mastitis Control and Intramammary Antimicrobial Stewardship in Ireland: Challenges and Opportunities
    The Veterinary Medicines Regulation (EU 2019/6) came into force in all EU member states on 28 January 2022. This regulation places particular emphasis on prudent and responsible antimicrobial use in food animal production. Key changes include restrictions on the prophylactic use of antimicrobials in animals, and the possibility to reserve certain antimicrobials for humans only. The Regulation presents challenges to the Irish dairy industry, particularly with respect to current approaches to dry cow therapy. In response, the CellCheck technical working group (TWG, a technical group working in support of CellCheck, the national mastitis control programme) have developed pragmatic national and farm-level recommendations in support of improved mastitis control and intramammary antimicrobial stewardship in the Irish dairy industry. This paper outlines these recommendations, and provides an overview of the evidence considered to inform the TWG during its work (including the Regulation, policy perspectives, international best-practice, international scientific reviews and specific Irish challenges). In many key areas of concern, the TWG recognises the challenges in seeking to shape recommendations in the absence of robust and practical scientific evidence. For this reason, some of the recommended actions are pragmatic in nature, informed by national and international experiences. Periodic programme review will be needed, informed by ongoing monitoring of key performance indicators, to identify those actions that are most effective in an Irish context.
      18Scopus© Citations 1