January 15, 2004
The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) unanimously approved in late November a series of health-related bills, including the Minor Use and Minor Species Animal Health Act (MUMS).
This is the first significant action seen on the MUMS legislation since it was introduced. Efforts are now ongoing to obtain full Senate action as soon as possible.
MUMS is intended to address the critical shortage of approved animal drugs for minor species and for minor uses in major species. The bill establishes two ways to lawfully market new animal drugs while ensuring appropriate safeguards for animal and human health. First, it establishes a conditional approval mechanism for drugs as long as they are proven safe and demonstrate a reasonable expectation of effectiveness; secondly, it creates an index of legally marketed, unapproved new animal drugs for some minor species.
The American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) is a member of the MUMS Coalition that has been working to get this legislation implemented.