Frequently Asked Questions

GENERAL

The RMTC is a consortium of stakeholders in the horse racing industry. Its mission is to provide an
independent voice for uniform rules, policies, and testing standards through research based
recommendations. The goal of these recommendations is to ensure the integrity of horseracing and
protection of the welfare of horses and other participants.
Its 23 member organizations represent horsemen’s groups, breed registries, racetracks, racing regulators,
industry associations and veterinarians. To see all of RMTC’s member organizations, please visit the Who We Are section of our homepage.
The RMTC SAC is comprised of experienced and knowledgeable racing regulatory veterinarians, veterinary pharmacologists, veterinarians in racetrack practice, and analytical chemists. Collectively they represent over 300 years of experience in the horse racing industry.
The SAC identifies tactical research needs, develops medication control strategies, solicits and monitors research projects, reviews data and formulates recommendations for regulatory thresholds and corresponding withdrawal guidance. The SAC also supports the development of new or improved testing methods, the sharing of laboratory information, and conducts workshops for chemists in the application of analytical methods.
The National Uniform Medication Program (NUMP) is a four-part program consisting of:

1. A Schedule of Controlled Therapeutic Substances (CTS);
2. Third-party Lasix administration;
3. A Multiple Medication Violation (MMV) program; and
4. RMTC Laboratory Accreditation.

Each portion of the NUMP was initially developed through subcommittees of the RMTC. The goal was to develop a comprehensive uniform program for the regulation of medications in horseracing. Each portion of the NUMP was approved by the RMTC Board and the Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI). Each of these provisions is being used in numerous racing jurisdictions across the country. The goal is uniform implementation of all four aspects of the program in every racing state nationwide.

CTS

Early in the process, a survey was sent to racetrack practitioners through the AAEP to determine which medications they felt were necessary to practice in a racing environment. That list was prioritized by the importance placed on the drugs by veterinarians and the frequency of positive drug violations. A number of the medications were removed as they were not available or no longer appropriate for use in horse racing (e.g., dipyrone and anabolic steroids). And some medications were added, such as firocoxib, because it was approved by the FDA for use in horses. The final list was developed by the SAC with further input from the AAEP, analytical chemists, veterinary pharmacologists, and regulatory veterinarians in conjunction with the RCI.

While the list is not inclusive of all potential medications that can be used in a horse, every effort was made to provide representative medications necessary to treat the common ailments of horses in training. Subsequent to the development of the initial list, additional medications have been added at the request of both the USTA and AAEP veterinarians. Furthermore, the RMTC has a formal process for considering additional medications for inclusion on the CTS list as new medications become available or as research funding becomes available.
A copy of the CTS list is available at: Controlled Therapeutic Substances May 2020

No. Medications not on the CTS may be used in accordance with any applicable state and federal law. But the RMTC will not provide withdrawal guidance on these medications. Also, bear in mind that medications on the CTS list are subject to lesser penalties under the Multiple Medication Violation Penalty system. Moreover, non-scheduled medications may be regulated differently by various jurisdictions – with some having internal laboratory screening limits and others testing to the Limit of Detection (LOD). To the point, there is no national uniformity with drugs not on the CTS list.
Some of the thresholds are based upon historical data and research (e.g., phenylbutazone, flunixin meglumine, and furosemide). The majority of the thresholds, however, were developed using research studies funded by the RMTC or studies shared with the RMTC from similar international studies. In the majority of the RMTC studies, between 16 and 22 horses were used. First, the subject medication was administered at clinically relevant dosages based on either manufacturer’s recommendations or input from clinicians and/or veterinary pharmacologists. Once a medication was administered researchers collected blood, and in some cases urine, at predetermined times post administration. After the samples were collected the analytic laboratory analyzed t