The American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) has announced a multi-part initiative to protect the health and welfare of the racehorse and help ensure the long-term viability of the racing industry in the United States.

The central component of the AAEP’s Prescription for Racing Reform is the association’s commitment to identifying non-race day treatment alternatives for exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH).

The AAEP Racing Committee held a strategic planning session in late February to address key issues affecting the health of the racehorse. The result was the development of the Prescription for Racing Reform, a 10-point plan designed to both protect the health of racing’s equine athletes and strengthen the integrity of the sport.

Key points of the initiative include:

  • Investigating efficacious EIPH management strategies that do not require race-day medication administration. The AAEP supports the use of furosemide to control the negative effects of EIPH in racehorses. However, race-day administration of any medication is seen by many as problematic for the sport.

    The AAEP will pursue alternative treatments for EIPH by facilitating a meeting of scientists, including experts in the fields of equine EIPH, pulmonary function and human sports medicine, with the goal of identifying research priorities which may yield effective alternatives to current EIPH treatment protocols. The organization will also pursue funding for identified research projects.

  • Banning the use of anabolic steroids in racehorses in training. Anabolic steroids are already banne