MSD Animal Health launches a checklist-based audit tool

Animal Health

To help vets engage more proactively with sheep farmers, a checklist-based audit tool has been launched by MSD Animal Health.

MSD Animal Health expects that by enabling farm vets to develop action plans that help shepherds address critical areas of flock productivity and health, the tool will allow farm vets to forge closer links with sheep farmers.

“MSD Animal Health launches a checklist-based audit tool.“

The Flock Health Checklist has been developed in conjunction with veterinary practitioners JP Crilly (Larkmead Veterinary Group, Oxfordshire), John Hemingway (Shropshire Farm Vets), Giselle Brown (Galloway Veterinary Group, Kirkcudbright, Jonathan Hobbs (North Park Veterinary Group, Devon) and Claire Jones (Dolgellau Vets, North Wales).

A veterinary advisor with MSD Animal Health, Kat Baxter-Smith, stated: “We have developed this new performance checklist drawing on specialist sheep vet working experiences, clinical research studies, economic data and industry recommendations. For example, the pre-breeding period is a great time to make sure ewes and rams are as fit and healthy as possible. Good practice and preparation in this area will go a long way to minimising stress and problems during a busy lambing period. Working through a series of ten questions within each of the three crucial time periods and two key management processes, designed to tease out where a sheep unit is in terms of accepted best management practice, allows vet and farmer to quickly pinpoint any areas needing attention. What’s more, repeating the checklist every six or twelve months is a great way to keep things on track, allowing both parties to monitor performance against agreed targets. Similar types of checklist have been available to dairy youngstock rearing units and beef suckler herds for a couple of years now, with several vets reporting that these tools have proved integral to their productivity improvement work with farmer clients. Use of this checklist-based approach is also helping better implementation of preventive health practices such as vaccination. We hope this latest tool will help the GB sheep industry similarly.”

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