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One Health

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1. With the advent of COVID19, the concept of 'One health' is gaining prominence.

2. It is based on Rudolf Virchow’s, the father of modern pathology, emphasis that there are essentially no dividing lines between animal and human medicine. 

What are Zoonosis and Anthropozoonosis?

1. Zoonosis is an infectious disease caused by a pathogen that is transmitted from an animal to a human crossing the species barrier.

2. Anthropozoonosis is an infection that gets transferred from humans to animals. 

Why is One Health important?

1. There has been a transboundary impact of viral outbreaks in recent years.

2. Nipah virus, Ebola, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Avian Influenza are some examples.

3. This necessitates consistent documentation of the linkages between the environment, animals, and human health.

Which are the measures taken in India?

1. India’s ‘One Health’ vision is based on the agreement between the tripartite-plus alliance.

2. This Tripartite-plus alliance that focuses on focuses on ‘One World, One Health’ involves

a. United Nations’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO),

b. World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE),

c. World Health Organization (WHO) and

d. United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and

e. World Bank.

3. India established a National Standing Committee on Zoonoses in the 1980s.

4. In 2021, funds were sanctioned for setting up a ‘Centre for One Health’ at Nagpur.

5. The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying (DAHD) has launched several schemes to mitigate the prevalence of animal diseases since 2015.

6. Under the National Animal Disease Control Programme, funds have been sanctioned for Foot and Mouth disease and Brucellosis control.

7. DAHD will also soon establish a ‘One Health’ unit within the Ministry.

8. Government will be revamping programmes that focus on capacity building for veterinarians.

9. The animal health diagnostic systems such as Assistance to States for Control of Animal Diseases (ASCAD) are planned to be upgraded.

10. Assistance will be extended to State biological production units and disease diagnostic laboratories as well.

11. DAHD has partnered with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in the National Action Plan for Eliminating Dog Mediated Rabies (97% of human rabies cases in India are attributed to dogs).

How to make the concept of One Health effective?

1. Timely detection is key to prevent infections.

2. Veterinary manpower shortages should be addressed.

3. Effective sharing of information between human and animal health institutions has to be established.

4. Coordination on food safety at slaughter, distribution, and retail facilities have to be instituted. 

5. Existing animal health and disease surveillance systems should be consolidated. Example- Information Network for Animal Productivity and Health and the National Animal Disease Reporting System.

6. Best-practice guidelines for informal market and slaughterhouse operation has to be devised and popularised.

7. Creating mechanisms to operationalise ‘One Health’ at every stage down to the village level is important.

8. Awareness generation, and increased investments toward meeting ‘One Health’ targets is needed.

Source : The Hindu