AVMA champions One Health legislation in Congress

Published on December 16, 2019
Participants in "Outbreak" exhibit tour organized by AVMA and One Health Coalition

Veterinarians in Congress have introduced innovative legislation to promote the concept of One Health. AVMA is leading the charge to build support for this important bill. 

The Advancing Emergency Preparedness Through One Health Act (S. 1903/H.R. 3771) would improve public health preparedness for emergencies by requiring federal agencies to develop a One Health approach. It was introduced in the House of Representatives by two veterinarians, U.S. Reps. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) and Ted Yoho (R-Fla.), and in the Senate by U.S. Sens. Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and Todd Young (R-Ind.).

Under the bipartisan legislation, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture would be required to coordinate with other agencies to develop a federal One Health Framework. This framework would do the following:

  • Advance workforce development related to preventing and responding to disease outbreaks in animals and humans.
  • Improve coordination between federal agencies that study human and animal health and the environment.
  • Advance scientific understanding of the connections among human, animal and environmental health.

With this framework in place, government agencies would undoubtedly be better able to prepare for and respond to zoonotic disease outbreaks. 

AVMA is working with congressional offices to generate support for this legislation. In October, AVMA joined the One Health Coalition to take congressional staff on a tour of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History’s "Outbreak" exhibit, which illustrates the dangers of zoonotic diseases. The tour was led by the museum’s curators.

You can add your voice to help get this important One Health legislation passed. Write Congress in support of this bill through AVMA’s Congressional Advocacy Network