We supervise and advise veterinary pharmacotherapy. This allows us to ensure that animal-based foods are clean and safe. We also wish to ensure that companion and hobby animals are treated with medications so that the efficacy of antimicrobials will not be compromised in humans or in animals.
How does the Regional State Administrative Agency enforce veterinary pharmacotherapy?
Enforcement means conducting inspections.
- When we conduct an inspection at a farm, we examine the use of medications and the related records.
- We also look at the medication records of veterinarians and examine how they use, distribute and prescribe medications.
- We conduct inspections at locations where animals are kept both on a random basis and if there is probable cause to suspect abuses. We examine medication use and records.
We collect samples of animal-based products that we then test for traces of medications and other contaminants. We also collect samples from live animals on farms and from animals at points later in the processing chain.
If pharmaceutical traces are found in milk, meat or other foods, then the medication use and records on the farm will be inspected as part of the investigation. An inspection maybe conducted by the regional veterinarian or a municipal veterinarian duly authorised by the regional veterinarian, e.g. a municipal veterinary inspector.
Municipal veterinarians conduct hygiene inspections in primary production, and these also involve reviewing medication records on the farms. However, these are not actual medication record inspections.
How does the Regional State Administrative Agency supervise the work of veterinarians?
The regional veterinarians at the Regional State Administrative Agency supervise the work of veterinarians on a random sample basis and if there is probable cause to suspect abuses. We engage in enforcement through documents and through on-site inspections, for instance at veterinarians’ practices.
We also process complaints filed against veterinarians.
If we find any shortcomings in veterinary pharmacotherapy, we process them at the Regional State Administrative Agency. If a case is serious, we forward it to the Finnish Food Authority. We may issue instructions on medications for animals in the inspections and through training sessions.
The Finnish Food Authority also supervises the work of veterinarians.