Zoonotic Disease Education

Comment on this policy

The AVMA strongly supports zoonotic disease education programs targeted to physicians, allied health professionals, veterinarians, and other  animal care professionals in accordance with the One Health concept.

Education programs should be coordinated with state and local animal health, public health, and emergency management staff.

Contents of programs should include most or all of the following topics, depending on the audience:

  1. The impact of zoonotic diseases on human health, animal health, the national economy, and food production.
  2. The importance of human and veterinary medical professionals and animal workers in detecting and preventing the spread of zoonotic diseases, and the potential for animal diseases to be used as instruments of biological warfare.
  3. Clinical and epidemiologic characteristics of zoonotic diseases in animals and humans.
  4. Information from recent zoonotic disease outbreaks.
  5. The ways that zoonotic disease agents can be transmitted and introduced (fomites, vectors, affected animals and animal products, and bioterrorism).
  6. The immediate biosecurity measures to be taken to prevent the spread of a suspected zoonotic disease until County, State, and/or Federal authorities can fully respond.
  7. The essential role of each level of government in responding to potential zoonotic disease outbreaks and how to contact the appropriate authorities when a zoonotic disease is suspected.
  8. Where to obtain further information on zoonotic diseases.

The AVMA is available as a resource and to review program materials and presentations.