[The National Order of Veterinary Doctors of Madagascar and the quality control of private veterinarians].Rev Sci Tech. 2004 Apr; 23(1):199-205; discussion 391-401.RS
Veterinary medicine was introduced into Madagascar with the arrival of French settlers in the early 1900s. At first, veterinary practitioners were all French, and they trained Madagascan veterinary auxiliaries. The first Madagascan veterinarians were trained in French veterinary schools. The idea of organising the profession dates back to the 1970s, but only in 1991 was the Animal Health Law, covering the veterinary profession, adopted by the National Assembly; it was promulgated by President Ratsiraka on July 25 of that same year. Thus, the National Order of Veterinary Doctors of Madagascar (ONDVM: Ordre national des docteurs vétérinaires malagasy) was instituted by a decree in February 1992. All veterinarians and paraprofessionals were employed in the public sector at the time and this new structure proved vital for the private exercise of the veterinary profession. With the adoption of a new national livestock policy, vaccination against major cattle and swine diseases became a profitable activity. One of the objectives of the sectoral livestock programme was that a total of 90 new posts for veterinarians should be created and located throughout the different regions and rural townships of the country. The Centre de promotion vétérinaire (Centre for Veterinary Promotion), which was created in 1992, was the organisation charged with carrying out this task. In 1998, once the private veterinarians were installed, a survey was undertaken with the aim of making an exhaustive assessment of all private veterinarians, collecting data from the public veterinary stations in zones covered by private veterinarians, and establishing a programme of disengagement and withdrawal of the decentralised services, particularly the public veterinary stations. More recently, the Administration and the ONDVM have been facing various organisational problems, notably with regard to the different levels of animal health staff working in the field. Thus, the Order is currently waging a mobilisation and awareness campaign for the adoption of a new animal health law. All new measures would be aimed at strengthening the management of artificial insemination centres and border protection and improving the work of all those involved in animal health: official and private veterinarians and members of the Order of Veterinary Doctors and the Order of Veterinary Paraprofessionals.