One Health Concept

Why in News?

About One Health Joint Plan of Action-

  • The Action plan developed through a participatory process, provided a set of activities that seek to reinforce collaboration, communication, capacity building and coordination equally across all sectors responsible for addressing health concerns at the human-animal-plant-environment interface.
  • The plan is valid from 2022-2026 and is aimed at reducing the health challenges at global, regional, and country levels.
  • Focus Areas of the Action Plan-
  • One Health capacity for health systems.
  • Emerging and re-emerging zoonotic epidemics.
  • Endemic zoonotic.
  • Antimicrobial resistance and the environment.
  • Food safety risks.
  • Neglected tropical and vector-borne diseases.

One Health Concept-

  • One Health is an approach that recognizes that the health of people is closely associated to the health of animals and our shared environment.
  • One Health vision acquire its blueprint from the agreement between the tripartite-plus alliance including the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).
  • Its purpose is to promote collaborations in research and sharing of knowledge at multiple levels across various disciplines such as human health, animal health, soil, plants, environmental and ecosystem health in ways that improve, protect and defend the health of all species.
  • Increasing Significance- It has become important in recent years because various factors have changed interactions between people, animals, plants and our environment.
  • Human Expansion- Human populations are growing and expanding into new geographic areas due to which close contact with animals and their environments provides more opportunities for diseases to move between animals and people.
  • Of the contagious diseases affecting people, more than 65% are of zoonotic or animal to man origin.
  • Environmental Disruptions- Disruptions in environmental conditions and habitats can render new opportunities for diseases to pass to animals.
  • International Travel & Trade- The movement of people, animals and animal products has increased from international travel and trade due to which diseases can spread rapidly across borders and around the globe.
  • Viruses in Wildlife- Scientists have observed that, more than 1.7 million viruses circulating in wildlife, and many of them are likely to be zoonotic.
  • This means that unless there is timely detection, India risks facing many more pandemics in near future.

Way Forward-

  • The Covid-19 pandemic demonstrated the relevance of ‘One Health’ principles in the governance of infectious diseases, particularly efforts to prevent and contain zoonotic diseases throughout the world.
  • India needs to scale up such a model across the country and to form meaningful research collaborations across the world.
  • There is a need to develop best practice guidelines for informal market and slaughterhouse operation (e.g., inspections, disease prevalence assessments) along with creating mechanisms to operationalise ‘One Health’ at every stage down to the village level.
  • Increased investments and awareness generation for meeting ‘One Health’ targets is the need of the hour.

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