Fédération Equestre Internationale officials announced on Dec. 1 that they’re delaying implementation of the new Equine Prohibited Substances List and the accompanying Equine Anti-Doping and Controlled Medication Regulations until April 5, 2010.
This delay will allow for broader debate and consultation on the policy change approved at the recent FEI General Assembly regarding the restricted use of a small number of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
The policy change will affect national federations and organizers who must comply with state laws as well as international competition rules. The rule will affect the breeding industry and the selection of horses, drug-testing laboratories, and those concerned with animal welfare.
The FEI acknowledges legitimate concerns and seeks supplementary research on the use of NSAIDs by delaying the rule.
“The FEI has been criticized for not providing sufficient time for consultation on the substances that differentiate the new policy from the old, and there has also been widespread unease about the late publication of the progressive list,” said FEI President HRH Princess Haya. “Views that have been expressed since the vote are being taken extremely seriously by the FEI as legitimate welfare concerns, and we give similar importance to our membership’s decision to effect a policy change. In light of both these considerations, we felt it was only fair to delay implementation of the new list to allow everyone to have their say and let other veterinary experts look at the science behind this policy change.”