July 15, 2008


 Board further commits to One Health Initiative

Posted July 1, 2008

In June, the Executive Board advanced the AVMA One Health Initiative by approving a series of recommendations.

First, the board received the final report of the AVMA One Health Initiative Task Force, charged with defining "one health" and providing recommendations and strategic actions to support and expand the concept across the health professions.

Next, the board approved dissemination of the report through regular communications channels. The executive summary of the task force report is first being published in this issue of JAVMA on page 259. This summary presents the task force's conclusions and 12 recommendations that form the outline for a proposed One Health Initiative. It concludes with a call to action for the medical professions and other health sciences to assume collaborative responsibility and support the One Health Initiative. The report acknowledges former AVMA president, Dr. Roger K. Mahr, "who championed the One Health concept and greatly helped elevate it as part of the AVMA's agenda."

On July 15, the full report will become available on the AVMA Web site here. Coordinated announcements have also been placed through other media outlets.

The Executive Board approved the concept of a One Health Initiative as outlined in the 12 task force recommendations. An expenditure of $50,000 was approved along with staff and logistic support for establishment and execution of a One Health Joint Steering Committee. This committee will facilitate the transition from the work of the AVMA task force to a National One Health Commission.

Dr. Lonnie J. King, who chaired the task force, indicated during the board meeting that the commitment of AVMA seed money for the steering committee would send a positive message to relevant groups that are about to review the task force report.

The National One Health Commission would be chartered as an independent nonprofit organization. An Executive Board-generated provision stipulates the expectation that the commission will be self-supporting and independent of AVMA financial support. That provision was recommended by Drs. David L. McCrystle, District X; Douglas G. Aspros, District I; Ted J. Cohn, District IX; and John R. Scamahorn, District VI.