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USDA PROPOSES TO AMEND REGULATIONS REGARDING THE NATIONAL VETERINARY ACCREDITATION PROGRAM

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Suzan Holl (301) 734-6464
Jerry Redding (202) 720-4623

WASHINGTON, June 2, 2006-The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is proposing to amend the regulations regarding the National Veterinary Accreditation Program to establish two accreditation categories in place of the current category, add requirements for supplemental training and renewal of accreditation and offer accreditation specializations.

Under the proposed rule, Category I would authorize veterinarians to perform accredited duties on companion animals only. Veterinarians would be authorized to perform accredited duties on all species to include poultry, equines and livestock under Category II. The new two-tiered system would replace the current structure under which an accredited veterinarian is authorized to perform accredited duties on all species.

APHIS is proposing these changes in order to support its animal health safeguarding initiatives, to involve accredited veterinarians in integrated surveillance activities and to make the provisions governing the National Veterinary Accreditation Program more uniform and consistent.

These proposed changes would increase the level of training and skill of accredited veterinarians in the areas of disease prevention and preparedness for animal health emergencies in the United States.

Notice of this proposed rule was published in the June 1 Federal Register.

Consideration will be given to comments received on or before July 31. Send an original and three copies of postal mail or commercial delivery comments to Docket No. APHIS-2006-0093, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road, unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. If you wish to submit a comment using the Internet, go to the Federal eRulemaking portal at http://www.regulations.gov and, in the “Search Regulations and Federal Actions” box, select “Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service” from the agency drop-down menu; then click on “Submit.” In the Docket ID column, select APHIS-2006-0093 to submit or view public comments and to view supporting and related materials available electronically.

Comments are posted on the Regulations.gov Web site and may also be viewed at USDA, Room 1141, South Building, 14th St. and Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, D.C., between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. To facilitate entry into the comment reading room, please call (202) 690-2817.

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