Finding resolution on antibiotic use, resistance

Oct 18, 2013
by WLJ

— Symposium in Kansas City, MO, Nov. 12-14

A 360-degree view of the often polarizing topic of antibiotics and antimicrobial resistance will be shared by human health and animal health experts at the “Bridging the Gap Between Animal Health and Human Health” symposium in Kansas City, MO, on Nov. 12-14.

Individuals providing insight and the latest research findings on this highly important issue include Dr. Richard Raymond, former USDA undersecretary for food safety; Katy Keiffer, producer and host of “What Doesn’t Kill You: Food Insights,” a weekly show covering food politics and policy for Heritage; Craig Wilson, Costco’s vice president of quality assurance, food safety and merchandise services; Tom Heinen, owner of Heinen’s Fine Foods with 17 stores throughout Ohio and Illinois; six speakers from the medical community; and additional presenters from the animal agriculture and environmental health communities.

“This symposium will provide dialogue that will be interesting and eye opening— and even challenging,” states Dr. Nevil Speer, PhD, Western Kentucky University and cochair of the “Bridging the Gap Between Animal Health and Human Health” symposium.

“The first and second antibiotic symposium underscored the need for continued dialogue, as antibiotic use in animals and human health is often emotionally charged and plagued by misinformation and incomplete information.

“Finding resolution to antimicrobial resistance must begin with the end in mind: improving human and animal health. Each of us must think in bigger and broader dimensions and focus on collective interests and not positions. This symposium is moving toward that goal.”

Eric Moore, DVM, Merck Animal Health and co-chair of the symposium, stresses that the Nov. 12-14 event provides a platform where individuals can hear scientific information and separate the scientific facts from perceived facts.

“Reaching resolution among human, animal and environmental health communities requires acceptance that the issues of antimicrobial use and resistance are not personal,” Moore adds.

“The scale and complexity of animal and human medical problems embedded in a changing environment demand that scientists and those involved in their respective communities—including myself—move beyond the confines of our own disciplines and explore new organizational models for team science.”

Hosted by the National Institute for Animal Agriculture, the symposium is open to food retailers and leaders in public health, consumer advocacy and animal agriculture, the media and other individuals interested in discussing science and future strategies to preserve antibiotic efficacy.

The 2013 symposium in Kansas City will start on Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 12, and conclude in the early afternoon on Thursday, Nov. 14. In addition to high-level, on-the-cutting-edge speakers, the symposium will include small group discussions and time allotted for attendees to ask questions.

The agenda, presentation topics and confirmed presenters for the “Bridging the Gap Between Animal Health and Human Health” symposium is available online at

To register for or learn more about the Nov. 12-14, 2013, symposium, please go online to or call 800/237-7193. — WLJ