Veterinary products are important tools in the prevention and control of animal diseases. The definition of veterinary products may vary from one country to another; for OIE purposes, they include vaccines, veterinary medicines, such as antimicrobial agents, and diagnostic kits. To ensure effective and sustainable animal disease control while minimising risks to humans and animals, governments are expected to provide appropriate regulations on the authorisation, manufacturing, distribution and use of veterinary products through their veterinary legislation.
In this context, the OIE develops for its Member Countries international standards, guidelines and recommendations for veterinary products. These reference documents can be found in the five following publications: Terrestrial Animal Health Code, Aquatic Animal Health Code, Manual of Diagnostic Tests and Vaccines for Terrestrial Animals and the Manual of Diagnostic Tests for Aquatic Animals.
The OIE also actively promotes activities related to harmonisation of veterinary legislation. As an associated member, the OIE supports the initiative for an International Cooperation on Harmonisation of Technical Requirements for Registration of Veterinary Medicinal Products (VICH). Some specific collaborative activities and translated VICH Guidelines can be joined under VICH Outreach Forum.
In parallel and in synergy with the development of international standards, guidelines and recommendations, the OIE provides a permanent support to Veterinary Services and laboratories to enable OIE Member Countries to implement them.
Actions taken by OIE Member Countries are coordinated by the OIE National Focal Points for veterinary products, who provide technical assistance to national Delegates in improving and harmonising national policies for veterinary products.
In May 2009, the World Assembly of Delegates adopted during the 77th OIE General Session Resolution No. 25 on Veterinary products, which clearly recommends the OIE to strengthen its actions and to further develop a coherent strategy in this field. This position has since then been reflected in the Fifth Strategic Plan (2011–2015) of the OIE, which was adopted at the 78th OIE General Session in May 2010 by this same Assembly.
Additional information available: Link to the OIE Bulletin 2010 No.1 “Veterinary Medicinal Products”.