News & Updates for Maryland Veterinarians


December 7, 2017 -

USDA Courses for CE Hours
(December 7, 2017) - As of January 1, 2018, any veterinarian who takes a USDA accreditation module can use that course to satisfy annual CE requirements. Veterinarians must complete 18 hours a year.  


November 30, 2017 - 

State Board Needs Updated Information

(November 30, 2017) - The State Board needs updated information from all veterinary hospitals in the state. Some of this information we have, but much of it we do not. More and more veterinary practices are owned by companies and LLCs, etc. We need to ensure that we have the right contact person for every kind of practice. This information will help ensure we communicate with the proper people in your practice about ongoing regulatory and licensing concerns. Hospitals will be getting an email request to fill out this form over the next few days, but you do not have to wait. 

How to update your hospital's information: 

First - Take a look at the information we will be asking you and have it handy. When you go online to update your info, you will have to update it all at once. You can't go back and finish later. We're sorry about that, but it's a limitation of the system we're using. 

TwoGo online and fill it out any time, but no later than December 29, 2017. If you do not fill it out by then, we will have to hunt you down and no one wants that. (If you lose the link, it is on our website.)  

If you have any concerns or questions, call the Board office at 410-841-5862 or email  mda.veterinaryboard@maryland.gov  

We truly appreciate your cooperation.


​November 16, 2017 -

Animal Cruelty Resources and Training 

(November 16, 2017) - As of October 1, 2017, veterinarians who have reason to believe that an animal they are treating has been subjected to cruelty or animal fighting are required to report it to the appropriate law enforcement agenciesWe have added a page to our website with information about this requirement and where veterinarians can report suspected cases of abuse. We will be adding information to this page as it becomes available. 

Save the Date: The State Board is partnering with the Maryland Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA) to host a training session, New Animal Cruelty Regulations: What does it mean for my practice? on Tuesday, January 16, 2018, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Maryland Department of Agriculture in Annapolis. More information about registration will be available soon, but save the date if you are interested in attending    

Read House Bill 1463 - Veterinary Practitioners - Animal Cruelty and Animal Fighting – Reporting.  


Sept. 29, 2017 -

Mandatory Animal Cruelty Reporting Begins Oct. 1​

(Sept. 29, 2017) A bill that passed during the 2017 legislative session requiring veterinarians to report suspected cases of animal cruelty and animal fighting takes effect Sunday, October 1.

House Bill 1463 - Veterinary Practitioners - Animal Cruelty and Animal Fighting – Reporting requires veterinarians who have reason to believe than an animal has been subjected to cruelty or animal fighting to report it to the appropriate law enforcement agencies (i.e., usually the county animal control agency). The bill outlines the protocols for reporting, which include requiring the veterinarian to note the condition of the animal upon presentation in the animal's treatment record; the basis for suspecting cruelty in the animal's treatment record; and promptly reporting the suspected instance. The bill also provides immunity from civil liability to veterinarians who report in good faith or who participate in an investigation of suspected animal cruelty or animal fighting. Veterinarians who do not report are subject to disciplinary action. The Board is currently developing regulations for the bill.

Veterinarians Must Register for PDMP
All veterinarians who are legally authorized to prescribe controlled dangerous substances (CDS) are required to register with the PDMP. Dispensing of CDS in the veterinary clinic setting is exempted from reporting to the PDMP. Separate from a veterinarian's potential role as a dispenser of CDS, if a veterinarian can legally prescribe CDS for an animal in Maryland, they are required by law to be registered with the PDMP. If you are not in possession of the qualifications to legally prescribe CDS in Maryland, you are not subject to the registration mandate. Read more.​
 

May 22, 2017 -

Board Inspections of CDS Logs are Disturbing​

(May 22, 2017) - State Board Inspectors have begun reviewing logs of controlled dangerous substances (CDS) at veterinary hospitals with more depth during routine inspections. The poor quality of the logs they have seen so far is disturbing. We strongly encourage you to take an immediate look at how you are recording your CDS usage and disposal, and ensure that you are doing it in accordance with the State of Maryland Regulations 15.14.01.12. We have a page on our website with information about these inspections, with samples of how CDS logs should be kept. The Board can sanction veterinarians for poor record keeping and initiate an investigation if abuse or misuse seems possible.

State Regulations Require Notifications

(May 22, 2017) State of Maryland Regulations require veterinary hospitals to notify the Board, in writing, whenever there is a change in ownership – even if there is just a change of one partner. Veterinarians are also required to notify the Board of any changes of employment, business contact information or personal contact information within 30 days of any changes. Hospitals are also required to notify us when a veterinarian joins or leaves the practice or when the responsible veterinarian changes. When you next see our Inspectors, they’ll be asking you for the names of all of the owners and the responsible vet. Please have that information handy. Read the regulations. 

Do You have a Substance Abuse Problem?

(May 22, 2017)  - The Maryland HealthCare Professionals Program (MHPP) provides a confidential, private setting to address issues that may impact your ability to practice veterinary medicine. The MHPP assists with problems such as alcohol and other substance use issues, psychiatric illness, cognitive impairment, behavioral issues, as well as any concerns related to personal or professionals stress. Veterinarians who enter the program on their own, without a Board order, are treated in a private program that is HIPAA-compliant and protects the confidentiality of those it serves as set forth under state and federal law. The Board collaborates with MHPP when it orders a veterinarian in to treatment as part of a disciplinary action, however, the self-referral program is not affiliated with the Board in any way. The MHPP is operated through the Center for a Healthy Maryland, the charitable 501(C)(3) affiliate of MedChi, The Maryland State Medical Society. If you are a veterinarian with a problem – get help. Visit the MHPP website or call 410.962.5580.

Veterinarians, Register for PDMP by July 1

(May 21, 2017) Starting July 1, 2017, veterinarians (and other prescribers) applying for a new or renewed individual CDS prescribing permit must be registered with the Prescription Drug Monitoring program. While the goal is to ensure all practitioners who are authorized to prescribe CDS in Maryland are registered, the program’s most immediate priority is to ensure that individuals with Maryland CDS prescribing permits issued by the Office of Controlled Substances Administration (OCSA) are registered. Veterinarians are currently exempt from reporting to the PDMP, but you must register. For info & to register. Please direct questions about PDMP registration to program managers at DHMH

April 20, 1017 -

Board Inspectors to Review CDS Logs  

(April 10, 2017) - The State Board has seen a disturbing increase in the number of veterinary professionals involved in opioid abuse complaints. Because of that, the Board is increasing its review of CDS logs during routine inspections of veterinary hospitals. The next time you see our inspectors, they will be there a little longer. They will pull patient records at random to ensure they match up with what’s in your logs. If your logs are poorly kept or hard to read, the Board may charge you with a violation of Code of Maryland Regulation –Record Keeping (15.14.01.10) or Controlled Dangerous Substances (15.14.10.12). We have published a new Inspection Page on our website to provide you with samples of CDS logs and other information related to CDS management. We urge you to take a look. 

Get Help! If you or one of your colleagues has a problem with substance abuse, we urge you to contact the Maryland Health Care Professionals Program, which was originally designed to assist physicians but is now open to any health care professional, including veterinarians.  The program does not inform the Board that any of its licensees are seeking treatment.  Please get help. 

January 1, 2017 

Veterinary Feed Directive In Effect 

Effective January 1, 2017, under the Veterinary Feed Directive final ruling, animal producers will need to obtain authorization from a licensed veterinarian to use medically important antimicrobials for treatment, control and prevention of specific animal health problems. Read more:  

2017 Maryland Animal Health Fair & Show Policy

The Maryland Department of Agriculture has announced animal health requirements for the 2017 fair and show season. Under the new regulations, all cattle and swine entering Maryland fairs and shows will be required to have a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag. The new requirements also extend the previous Avian Influenza testing interval from 10 days to 21 days. Also, private sale of poultry will be allowed this year with a record of sale maintained by the fair or show operator for one year. Read more. 

High Path Avian Influenza

While we have been fortunate to date, we must remain vigilant and on-guard for a possible outbreak of High Path Avian Influenza (HPAI). With recent outbreaks in as many as 12 countries throughout Europe and Asia, it remains very possible for the disease to enter the U.S. through migratory flyways. 

For the latest updates on HPAI, visit our Bird Flu Blog​.

Veterinary Feed Directive: How will it affect beekeepers and honeybees?

Under the new regulation, both hobbyist and commercial beekeepers will no longer be able to purchase antimicrobials over the counter, and will be required to obtain a prescription for any antibiotics or antimicrobials given to their honeybees. This will help promote good beekeeping practices, and is truly the most effective way to prevent and control disease in honeybees.​ Read More.

 
 


Contacts

The State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners 
Vanessa Orlando, Executive Director
410-841-5862
 
Dr. Michael Radebaugh
State Veterinarian 

410-841-5810 office
800-492-5590 toll free
410-841-5971 after hours

Media Inquiries: 
Jason Schellhardt, Public Information Officer, 410-841-5889