Consultation on Health Canada's Interim Notification Program for Low-Risk Veterinary Health Products

Consulting with Canadians

Health Canada consulted with key stakeholders, including the Canadian public, on policy options to address the regulation of Low Risk Veterinary Health Products (LRVHPs) in Canada. The online consultation was launched on February 18th, 2011 and closed on April 22nd, 2011. Stakeholders were pre-notified of these consultations through targeted mailings.

The proposed program is consistent with recommendations made to Health Canada by the Expert Advisory Committee on Veterinary Natural Health Products (EAC-vNHP) regarding the regulation of low-risk veterinary health products.

The objective of the online consultation was to generate quantitative and qualitative data on stakeholders' opinions regarding Health Canada's proposed Interim Notification Program. 

Participation

A total of 20 individuals and representatives of stakeholder organizations completed the on-line consultation, with representatives of:

  • the veterinary drug industry (including importers, producers, processors, distributors, retailers);
  • academia/research organizations;
  • health professional associations; and
  • Federal/provincial/territorial government

Results of consultation

During the online consultation the majority of stakeholders expressed their support of Health Canada's proposed Interim Notification Program (hereafter referred to as the Program).

Some stakeholders requested clarification pertaining to the List of Admissible Substances (LAS), in particular, how new substances would be added to the List and the process to amend the list. The process to amend the list is under development and will be completed in time for the launch of the Program. In addition, stakeholders wanted assurance that the LAS would be developed and maintained in harmony with international approaches which is the approach being taken by Health Canada.

Some stakeholders requested additional information regarding the extension of this Program to include products intended for food-producing animals. The VDD is taking a step wise approach in dealing with the regulatory oversight of low risk veterinary health products, starting first with those used in animals not intended for food.

Clarifications were sought on some administrative /operational matters namely; the treatment of domestic and imported products, and the handling of a potential backlog of requests when the program is launched. Both imported and domestic products will be subject to the same standard while the potential for an initial backlog is a key consideration throughout the development of the program.

It is important to note that the recommendations of the Expert Advisory Committee-vNHP (EAC-vNHP) were considered during the development of the Program. At the last EAC-vNHP meeting, members unanimously agreed that the Program is in line with their recommendation report.

Conclusion

Health Canada is analysing all comments from the online consultation in finalizing the details of the Program. Health Canada will communicate with stakeholders on the next steps regarding the Interim Notification Program.

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