The state Gaming Commission today named Scott E. Palmer, VMD, as state’s equine medical director after a series of horse deaths at New York tracks in recent years.
From 2009 through October 2013, a total of 769 horses died at the state’s 11 racetracks, Gannett’s Albany Bureau reported in November.
A review last year by Gannett’s Albany Bureau showed that New York had a 30 percent increase in horse deaths on its tracks between 2009 and 2011.
Palmer will also serve as a adjunct professor at Cornell University in Ithaca.
As the equine medical director, Palmer will oversee the medical care and safety at all New York racetracks.
“Dr. Palmer brings a wealth of experience and expertise that will benefit the entire horse racing community. His skills and knowledge are crucial to the safety and well-being of New York’s world-class race horses and I am proud to welcome him to the Gaming Commission,” Cuomo said in a statement.
More on Palmer’s credentials:
Since his graduation from the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Veterinary Medicine in 1976, Dr. Palmer has worked as a staff clinician at the New Jersey Equine Clinic, serving as the Hospital Director since 1997. He is a two-time recipient of the New Jersey Equine Practitioners Veterinarian of the Year award, as well as a recipient of the AAEP President’s Award in 2009 and the AAEP Distinguished Service Award in 2010.
Dr. Palmer is board certified in equine practice by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. He has authored dozens of peer-reviewed publications and is a featured speaker at veterinary conferences world-wide. He is a member of several professional organizations and has held leadership positions in many, including the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Association of Equine Practitioners, the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners, the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association, and the New Jersey Association of Equine Practitioners.
Dr. Palmer chaired the New York Task Force on Racehorse Health and Safety, which was formed at the request of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo in 2012 in the wake of 21 equine fatalities during Aqueduct’s 2011-12 Winter Meet. The New York State Equine Medical Director position was established last year as a key recommendation of that Task Force.