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Uniform US Drug Regulations A Step Closer
The regulators of eight states in the Northeast region of the US have committed to a uniform medication and drug testing program, reports bloodhorse.com. The agreement was spearheaded by the Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association (THA) and was announced on March 12. It represents a dramatic change in medication regulation and testing and the THA believes it could pave the way for national uniformity. The participating states, comprising New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia & Massachusetts, will implement the Mid Atlantic Uniform Medication Program. THA chairman Alan Foreman said, "The largest concentration of racing in the United States on a daily basis is conducted in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. Some 18 racetracks operate within a 200-mile radius. Many horsemen race in more than one state and, in some instances, on the same day. There is no region in the country where uniformity is more imperative than in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. The horsemen have been asking for this for years, the time has come, and we are finally in a position to do it." The program divides medications into two new categories: controlled therapeutic substances and prohibited substances. The controlled therapeutic substances category will limit horsemen and veterinarians to 24 medications that have been recognized as appropriate for therapeutic use in racehorses to treat illness or injury. Because of the differing requirements from state to state and the need for uniform implementation, the regulators agreed to begin the adoption process immediately following RMTC and ARCI board approval of the controlled therapeutic substances list, and have agreed to a uniform implementation date of January 1, 2014.