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The Environmental Impact of Animal Health with Lloyd Smart Regulation Lead

Lloyd Smart, Regulation Lead for Accord Animal Health discusses the environmental impact of veterinary medicines and One Medicine.

As an industry, we're very much more aware of the environmental impact that our veterinary medicines are beginning or potentially have on the environment. 

We've always had the requirement to conduct an environmental risk assessment (ERA) for a veterinary medicinal product before it is placed on the market. Still, we're conscious that the scope of that assessment needs to widen. The industry and regulators are determining how we can lessen that environmental burden whilst maintaining all the positive benefits that veterinary medicines provide. It should be stated that this is not a veterinary industry-specific issue but crosses into human pharmaceuticals also industry.

The majority of the products that are used in veterinary or human healthcare end up in our waste streams, often the water compartment, and we must look at ways of mitigating that environmental burden. There are a number of ways we can achieve that and a move from the more persistent, potentially harmful chemicals is underway with them being replaced by a more holistic, preventative medicines approach.

One Health”, headed up by the World Health Organisation, broadly speaking looks to provide a framework that brings together the health of the planet, animals, and humans, by, amongst other topics, utilising pharmaceuticals in accordance with best practices and sound, sustainable practices. We know that the health of the planet, and the health of ourselves as humans are all inherently entwined with the health of animals and vice versa. It's a principle that most responsible companies are well on top of, and Accord will be looking to utilise that as a framework to ensure a sustainable approach.

The “One Medicine” approach fits perfectly with Accord and pushes the co-development of medicines and diagnostics for animals and humans and to share learnings from each space. The traditional sequential approach often starts with R&D in the larger human pharmaceutical space with either interesting molecules, or often those that don’t make it through full development, being transferred into the veterinary sphere if a target market can be found.  The “One Medicine” approach is very much more aligned with co-developing medicines, shared R&D and learnings and developing and using them simultaneously in human and animal medicine to the benefit of all.

Accord looks forward to being at the forefront of both human and veterinary medicine utilising sustainable approaches to support health on a global scale.

Lloyd Smart, Regulatory Lead, Animal Health

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Date Created: 7th March 2024

Author: Maxine Poole