Veterinarians involved in emergency response can earn a graduate certificate from a distance-learning program in veterinary homeland security at Purdue University.
The Veterinary Homeland Security Graduate Certificate Program is designed to meet the needs of veterinarians who volunteer on state emergency response teams. Individuals with expertise in public health, animal science, or homeland security may also participate, with instructor approval.
The program is a cooperative effort among the Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine, Purdue University Homeland Security Institute, Indiana Board of Animal Health, and Indiana Department of Homeland Security.
"By providing quality training for existing veterinary professionals that is accessible remotely, we hope to address the current shortage of veterinarians to serve our nation's needs in public health, regulatory medicine, and medicine for livestock," said Dr. Sandra Amass, associate professor in veterinary clinical sciences.
Dr. Amass is pleased to announce that Dr. W. Ron DeHaven, administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, will be participating in the program as a lecturer.
Dr. DeHaven commented, "I am honored to be a part of Purdue's certificate program in homeland security. Veterinarians today have so much to think about in addition to the health and well-being of the animals. Emerging and zoonotic diseases are constantly in the headlines, terrorism is a threat, and veterinarians are on the front lines to protect both animal and human health. Programs such as this one help raise the awareness of everyone in the field."
Participants will enhance understanding of natural and intentional threats to animal health, strengthen skills to prevent animal-health emergencies, and develop problem-solving expertise to become effective members of an animal emergency response team.
Elective courses such as crime scene management, geographic information systems, and radiologic and chemical events will allow the veterinarians to develop expertise in a specific area of veterinary homeland security.
Students can access course material on the National Biosecurity Resource Center Web site, or if they do not have high-speed Internet access, by CD-ROM.
Classes will begin in May 2006, and registration is now open. For information, log on to www.biosecuritycenter.org/article.php?vetHomelandProgram or call (765) 494-9793.