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WHO:Call For Implementing One Health Approach

The World Health Organisation says adopting a One Health approach that recognises people’s health is closely connected to the health of animals.

The director-general of WHO, Mr Tedros Ghebreyesus said this at the second quadripartite executive annual meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, on Thursday.

Mr Ghebreyesus said, “Our shared environment offers promising solutions for addressing unprecedented challenges.

“We need sustained political will to ensure One Health principles are embedded in national and international policies. Implementation in countries; resource mobilisation; science and evidence; and political will.

“These are the four priorities that we must pursue together in the year ahead.”

The WHO boss said leaders of the four organisations of the quadripartite collaboration on One Health, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, the UN Environment Programme and WHO, the World Organisation for Animal Health, have worked together to advance the One Health approach worldwide.

He said in the meeting that the organisations reaffirmed their commitment to enhance the plan’s policy impact further and mobilise sustainable resources to support One Health implementation at all levels.

“The One Health Joint Plan of Action launched in 2022 is designed to integrate systems and capacity so that we can collectively better prevent, predict, detect, and respond to health threats.

“Ultimately, this initiative seeks to improve the health of humans, animals, plants, and the environment while contributing to sustainable development,” he said.

Mr Ghebreyesus said that the newly launched One Health Joint Plan of Action Implementation Guide was a cornerstone of the global efforts, providing practical guidance for translating One Health theory into action.

According to him, the One Health High-Level Expert Panel collated existing resources and tools and developed the One Health inventory list for the Guide.

Amina Benyahia, head of WHO One Health Initiative, said the ultimate goal and value of “our One Health collaboration lie in effecting positive changes” at the country level.

“By empowering countries, strengthening health systems, and fostering cross-sectoral collaboration, we have the opportunity.

Lastly, “The opportunity to drive transformative change from the ground up to achieve improved health and well-being globally,” added Ms Benyahia.