The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the interconnectedness of human health, animal health, the state of the environment, and the negative effects of underestimating threats at this interface. This interconnectivity means that multi-sectoral and multidisciplinary efforts in the context of One Health Concept should be translated from a concept to a system and partnerships that keep people safer.
Unfortunately, the lack of dialogue on what constitutes an equitable and effective One Health partnership, and how to accurately evaluate partnership performance may negate these efforts to operationalise the One Health approach.
In the latest article published by researchers from SUA and other institutions in the prestigious journal "The Lancet, Vol 41", analyzed global One Health Networks revealed numerous deficits in geographical distribution and partnership structures. For example, the article shows that there are more one health networks headquartered or operational in Europe than in any other region worldwide, existence of self-identified One Health Networks that have little involvement with environment or ecosystems stakeholders, and selective engagement of community stakeholders in the design, and agenda-setting phases of implementation.
“These and other identified gaps have the potential effects on the effectiveness and sustainability of One Health efforts to address urgent threats to global health”. The authors have warned.
Nevertheless, the authors propose solutions to address the identified gaps including abolishing high-income supremacy and global health agenda that are based on colonial structures and in favor of more inclusive networks that genuinely attempt to overcome One Health issues and help communities most affected by emerging and common threats.
Lastly but not least, this and other similar analyses should be used to improve deficits within the respective One Health Networks, and can be used as a the basis to establish databases and repositories of global One Health Networks
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