Racing Victoria (RV), together with the University of Melbourne (UoM), on Tuesday advised an update regarding services offered at the U-Vet Werribee Equine Centre (U-Vet) to support the Victorian thoroughbred racing industry.
In light of changes to U-Vet’s operations that take effect this month, RV and the UoM have been in discussions regarding the provision of emergency services for thoroughbred racehorses.
RV and UoM are pleased to advise that they have entered into an agreement for U-Vet to deliver year-round 24-hour emergency on-call service for serious limb injuries and fractures incurred by thoroughbreds in training and racing, extending its previous commitment to provide these services during key racing carnivals.
These services support the enhanced safety measures announced recently for the Spring Racing Carnival and international horses in training at the Werribee International Horse Centre (WIHC).
In summary, U-Vet has committed to provide the following services to the Victorian thoroughbred racing industry on an ongoing basis:
• Year-round specialist emergency orthopaedic clinical services on an on-call basis for racehorses injured on Victorian tracks or private training facilities;
• Specialist orthopaedic clinical services, including advanced diagnostic imaging and lameness investigation, to all horses at the U-Vet Equine Lameness and Imaging Centre; and
• On-call emergency clinical services for horses stabled at the WIHC.
U-Vet will also continue to provide all equine clients with specialist referral lameness investigation and treatment services and advanced diagnostic imaging, including the standing CT scanner.
RV Chief Executive, Giles Thompson, said, “We are pleased to reach agreement with the University of Melbourne on the provision of services at U-Vet to support our trainers, owners and raceday officials in sourcing emergency care for any seriously injured thoroughbred racehorses.
“U-Vet’s 24-hour year-round on-call emergency service for thoroughbred racehorses will ensure expert care is available for our horses should they sustain a serious injury during racing or training, which is an important welfare outcome.
“U-Vet is one of the state’s leading equine hospitals and it will be available at all times to assist horses competing at our metropolitan tracks if there is a serious injury, importantly when racing on Friday nights and weekends.
“U-Vet will also be on standby to treat horses who sustain a serious injury in training at Flemington or at one of our south west tracks of a morning which is a vital option for trainers seeking the best care for their horse.
“The agreement adds to U-Vet’s existing commitment to provide 24-hour on-call support to horses stabled at the Werribee International Horse Centre and ensures that we can deliver all of the enhanced safety measures announced recently for the Spring Racing Carnival.
“Additionally, U-Vet’s highly valuable research programs, including the Equine Limb Injury Prevention Program, jointly funded by the University of Melbourne, RV and the State Government, will continue.”
Head of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at UoM Professor, Josh Slater, said, “We’re pleased to work with Racing Victoria to provide support to the racing community.
“The Equine Centre has shared a long and rich history and partnership with the Victorian State Government and Racing Victoria, and has conducted ground-breaking and high-impact collaborative research and development with their support. Our clinical work supports the continuing research we conduct in this area and our commitment to improving racehorse health outcomes.”