(WASHINGTON, DC) July 29, 2021— The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has named U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) the winner of the 2021 AVMA Advocacy Award for her ongoing contributions in advancing the veterinary profession and support for One Health programs.
“Senator Smith is a champion for the profession, as demonstrated by her unwavering support of using a One Health approach to improve public health preparedness, ending the cruel act of horse soring, and increasing access to veterinary care in rural areas,” said Dr. Douglas Kratt, AVMA President. “We are grateful to have such a strong congressional ally who understands veterinary issues and the impact they have on public health.”
The Advancing Emergency Preparedness Through One Health Act, which was reintroduced by Senator Smith earlier this year with support from the AVMA, American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges, and the One Health Community, would require federal agencies to work together to develop a federal One Health Framework. Senator Smith also supports the Prevent All Soring Tactics Act, legislation addressing chronic wasting disease, and has been a leader on policies important to animal agriculture, including the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program Enhancement Act.
"Thank you to the American Veterinary Medical Association for this award. I’m honored to receive it and I’m grateful to work with you to advance a One Health Framework," said Senator Smith. "I start from the fundamental idea that adopting a One Health Framework will strengthen our nation’s approach to preventing and responding to epidemics. Tracking diseases in animals helps keep domestic and wild animals healthy, and it helps prevent illnesses and diseases in people. Thanks to your work, Congress and the federal government are finally beginning to understand the role that One Health can play in combating future outbreaks. I look forward to our continued effort to move this forward."