One Health is the integrative effort of multiple disciplines by Bayer working locally, nationally, and globally to attain optimal health for people, animals, and environment. Together, the three make up the One Health triad, and the health of each is inextricably connected to the others in the triad. Understanding and addressing the health issues created at this intersection is the foundation for the concept of One Health. Because of their expertise, veterinarians under One Health play critical roles in the health of animals, humans, and even the environment, but these roles are often overlooked or unrecognised. Nonetheless, veterinary medicine is the only profession that routinely operates at the interface of these three components of One Health. The concept behind One Health has existed for centuries – from Hippocrates’ On Airs, Waters, and Places (estimated 400 BC). As the human population continues to increase and expand across the world, the interconnection of people, animals, and environment becomes more significant and impactful. The importance of One Health is highlighted by many factors in our world today:
- The world’s total population exceeded 7 billion people in 2011, and it continues to climb.
- As our population expands geographically, the contact between human and wild animal habitats increases, introducing the risk of exposure to new viruses, bacteria and other disease-causing pathogens.
- Advancing technologies and science-based evidence is increasing the awareness, knowledge, and understanding of the interdependency of the health of humans, animals, and the environment.
- The human-animal bond continues to grow throughout societies.
- It is estimated that at least 75 percent of emerging and re-emerging diseases are either zoonotic (spread between humans and animals) or vector-borne (carried from infected animals to others through insects).
- Vigilant protection of our food and feed supplies from food-borne diseases, contamination, and acts of terrorism is critical for human and animal health.
- Contamination by personal care products and pharmaceuticals has been detected in our waters.