California Veterinary Medical Board

CHRB Emergency Rule on Compounded Drugs Geared to Shield Veterinarians

In an attempt to help shield California's backstretch veterinary community from possible further punitive actions by the Veterinary Medical Board (VMB), the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) has issued proposed emergency regulations designed to clear up discord between these two agencies about the correct use of compounded medications across California's backstretches. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines the compounding of drugs as "the process of combining, mixing, or altering ingredients to create a medication tailored to the needs of an individual patient. Compounding includes the combining of two or...

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Arthur Accuses Vet Med Board of 'Regulatory Extortion'

At the quarterly California Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) meeting Wednesday, the board acknowledged that yawning practical and philosophical differences between the agency and the state's equine practitioners urgently need to be addressed. According to Richard Sullivan, chair of the VMB's Multidisciplinary Advisory Committee, this disconnect concerns approaches to record keeping and the Veterinary-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR), calling efforts to bridge this divide as "a huge task, but a very necessary one." During the public comment period at the start of the meeting, former California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) equine medical director...

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“Horrifically Wrong”: California VMB and Equine Practitioners at Odds

Last month marked the resumption of business as usual for Jeff Blea, back as California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) equine medical director after an eight-month plus enforced hiatus due to the California Veterinary Medical Board's (VMB) controversial step of suspending his license. In a settlement with the medical board, Blea agreed to continuing education classes in record keeping, a remittance to the VMB of $131,464 for the investigation costs, and a three-year probationary period. Those believing the return of Blea to his prior role would bring an end to the...

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CHRB Backs Blea Ahead of 'Dangerousness' Hearing

Three members of the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB), plus the agency's executive director, on Thursday advocated for the reinstatement of temporarily suspended CHRB equine medical director Jeff Blea on the eve of his hearing before the California Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) to rule on a list of allegations that include administering "dangerous drugs" to racehorses without examination or medical necessity. "For my own two cents as chairman, I think that the issues surrounding Dr. Jeff Blea brought forth by the veterinary medical board are both ill-advised and slanderous," said...

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Blea Suspension: Medical Necessity Or Political Theater

Given Jeff Blea's high-profile position as equine medical director for the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB), news last week that the California Veterinary Medical Board had issued an interim suspension of his veterinary license set the latest alarm bells clanging across the industry. Certainly, the accusations leveled against Blea appear a damning indictment of his veterinary bona-fides. According to the veterinary board, Blea presents a "danger to public health, safety and welfare," due to his oversight of the investigation into the death of the Bob Baffert-trained Medina Spirit (Protonico), the...

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CHRB Responds to VMB Suspension of Dr. Blea

In response to the actions brought by the California Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) against Dr. Jeff Blea, Equine Medical Director, the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) issued a statement Thursday morning regarding the interim suspension order of his license. The investigation into the death of GI Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit (Protonico) will now be headed by the executive associate dean of UC Davis' School of Veterinary Medicine. "Given the sensitive and very public nature of the necropsy and resulting investigation into the death of Medina Spirit, and in keeping...

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