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New benchmarking feature for eMB

26th Jul 2021 / By Rebecca Veale

The electronic Medicines Book (eMB) has a new benchmarking feature to enable you and your vet to see whether your unit(s) falls in the top 5% or 10% of antibiotic users for your holding type over a rolling 12-month period.

embIf you fall in the top 5%, you will be classed as a persistently high user (see more below), and you will be prompted to complete an antibiotic reduction plan in conjunction with your vet. If you fall in the top 10%, you will be notified as an early warning so that you can put measures in place to reduce usage where appropriate.

The Pig Health and Welfare Council (PHWC) has produced a template Antibiotic Reduction Plan (ARP). The ARP is a tool to help producers and vets work collaboratively on solutions for responsible reductions in the use of antibiotics.

Persistently High Users (PHU) of antibiotics are asked to complete an ARP in conjunction with their PVS vet.

The PHWC Antimicrobial Usage subgroup has produced a template for the ARP with actions and timescales for completion. It includes three sections:

  1. Record use from the start of the plan, documenting the progress over time; include a target to aim for.
  2. Vets will collate those antibiotics that make a significant contribution to total usage and reasons for use to help to prioritise and target areas of concern. This section will also include diagnostics, practical constraints and interventions already implemented.
  3. Identify and agree interventions to reduce antibiotic use. These actions might include staff training, internal and external biosecurity practices, diagnostics, or management practices.

Persistently High Users

Persistently High Users are defined as the top 5% of antibiotic users in each of the main categories of production recorded by eMB, except boar studs and gilt units.

The top 5% in each category will be calculated using the last four quarters’ rolling data.

Producers will be notified that they are a PHU when they submit their usage data for the current quarter on eMB. The unit vet will see this on the front page of the eMB report when they are confirming that this has been completed at their quarterly vet visit.