HC Deb 03 July 1987 vol 118 cc202-3W
Mr. McLoughlin

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he proposes to undertake any review of the licensing and control of animal medicines parallel to that into human medicines announced by the Secretary of State for Social Services on 11 March, Official Report, column 238.

Mr. MacGregor

The issues arising from the licensing and control of animal medicines range widely. In particular the criterion of safety laid down in the Medicines Act 1968 has to be taken to cover not only the safety of the treated animal but the safety of the consumer of produce from that animal, the safety of mill and farm workers who may be exposed to feed containing animal medicines over long periods and the safety of the environment generally. There have been far reaching changes in the use of animal medicines since the Act came into force which demand wider ranges of expertise for the necessarily rigorous assessments of animal medicines. We must ensure that the necessary resources are efficiently deployed.

I have therefore decided to commission an independent study to run parallel with that on human medicines. It will he carried out by Mr. Peter Cunliffe who has recently retired from the Chairmanship of the Pharmaceuticals Division of ICI, who is also involved in the parallel study on human medicines. His terms of reference will be:— To consider and advise on the best use of resources for the control of animal medicines under the United Kingdom and EC legislation bearing in mind

  1. (a) the need to ensure the safety, quality and efficacy of all medicines;
  2. (b) the need in particular to ensure that veterinary medicines are safe not only for treated animals but also for consumers, for farm and mill workers, and for the environment generally;
  3. (c) the need for the licensing arrangements to be self-financing.