June 17, 2024

Global Health Security Agenda Addresses Animal Disease Link

The White House released a fact sheet on Friday about the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA). Discussions were held at the White House which included leaders of the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Organization for Animal Health, and representatives from 40 countries.

White HouseFAO Director-General Jose Graziano de Silva spoke about the need for animal health controls to stop the spread of disease from animals to humans. The Ebola outbreak highlights this need. He said that “controlling zoonotic diseases and emerging threats at the human, animal and ecosystems interface needs an integrated and multidisciplinary approach that brings different sectors to work closely together to attain the health of people, ¬†animals, and the environment.” He added “there is a need to set up global preparedness, surveillance and response programs.”

The Ebola virus crossed to humans who consumed bush meat (bats, antelopes and other hoofed animals, primates, and rodents). The virus is only spread through close contact with blood, organs, bodily fluids, and secretions. Fruit bats naturally host the virus.

The United States, through the GHSA, launched a system in February 2014 to protect humans from infectious diseases that make the jump from animals to people. It will create steps to prevent outbreaks, track real-time threats, and develop rapid response to outbreaks and threats of outbreaks. The Steering Group includes representatives from Chile, Finland, Indonesia, Kenya, India, Canada, Italy, Saudi Arabia, and Korea as well as the U.S.

The President’s recent commitment to fighting antibiotic-resistant bacteria dovetails with this strategy. Bacteria have made the leap from animals to humans in the past few years. In addition, “Food animals serve as a reservoir of resistant pathogens and resistance mechanisms that can directly or indirectly result in antibiotic resistant infections in humans,” according to the CDC.


  1. Mutegheki jockonuss says

    If strongly believe that animals are the strong carrier reservoirs of infection that that causes human disease . But mode of eradication and control of these disease can be done by funding of veterinians on research level on primate game spp , and development of vaccines for such diseases ,, on that zoonotics will be prevented .
    Up to now i have not seen a vaccine for brucella in humans due to limited research .
    I hope if we vets are included and funded in research units with human medics disease can reduce .

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