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Hendra virus outbreak in Australia Affecting Human Lives: a ‘One Health in Action’ example - Monday, May 31, 2010

Hendra virus outbreak in Australia Affecting Human Lives: a ‘One Health in Action’ example


In response to several News reports including Australia.To News on May 21, 2010 entitled “New research sheds light on Hendra virus” and a ProMED-mail article posted on the One Health Initiative website’s ProMED page May 24, 2010 entitled “HENDRA VIRUS - AUSTRALIA (04): (QUEENSLAND), HUMAN EXPOSURE” the One Health Initiative website requested from veterinarian Dr. Hume Field an updated News report.  Dr. Field is a prominent and valued One Health supporter/advocate living and working in Australia.


The following was graciously provided on May 30, 2010:


Queensland Government

Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation


May 2010


Hendra virus

Hume Field, BVSc, MSc, PhD, MACVS

Principal Veterinary Epidemiologist (Emerging Diseases), Biosecurity Queensland


Hendra virus was first described in September 1994, in a novel disease outbreak in horses in Australia. Twenty horses and two humans were infected on that occasion, resulting in the death of 13 horses and one human. A further thirteen incidents (some single-horse events, some multiple-horse events) have been identified to date, resulting in more than 40 confirmed equine cases and seven human cases (four of them fatal). Fruit bats of the genus Pteropus (colloquially known as flying foxes) are the natural host of the virus.


The most recent incident was confirmed on 20 May 2010, when Biosecurity Queensland confirmed a positive Hendra virus PCR result for a horse on a property in Tewantin, in south-east Queensland, Australia. The horse was humanely euthanized after a rapid clinical progression. A second (in-contact) horse on the property was clinically well and negative for Hendra virus in the first round of testing. The second horse will remain under quarantine until samples collected a minimum of two incubation periods after the last exposure opportunity are negative to all tests.


Animal health (Biosecurity Queensland) and public health (Queensland Health) agencies are responding jointly to the incident, and will continue to work with the horse owners, the attending veterinarian and local community.


The Biosecurity Queensland Emerging Diseases Research Group, led by veterinary epidemiologist Dr. Hume Field, is using infra-red cameras to record nocturnal interactions and behaviour in horses, bats and other nocturnal wildlife to better understand how Hendra virus is transmitted to horses. The group is also collecting pooled urine samples from fruit bat colonies in the vicinity as part of ongoing investigations into Hendra virus infection dynamics in bats.


There have been calls from individuals and groups in the community for culling of bats. The Biosecurity Queensland perspective is that culling is scientifically flawed and not the answer to the Hendra virus problem. Fruit bats are an important part of the natural system, promoting biodiversity and supporting the timber industry and nature-based recreation and tourism. Beyond this, it’s simply not feasible to cull bats – they are nomadic animals whose movements are driven by food availability – if you cull one location, animals will move in from another location to utilise the food resources. Indeed, culling is likely to be counter-productive and exacerbate virus excretion, firstly by further stressing bat populations, and secondly, the resultant ‘sink’ effect will result in increased population flux. Most importantly, culling is just not necessary; there are effective measures that people can take to mitigate the risks of infection transmission from bats to horses, and from horses to humans.


The website has up to date information on Hendra virus, including the latest version of the Guidelines for veterinarians handling potential Hendra virus infection in horses.

The One Health Initiative Website Welcomes … Worldwide One Health Submissions for Posting - Saturday, May 29, 2010

NOTICE (June 7, 2010):

 The One Health Initiative Website Welcomes …

 Worldwide One Health Submissions for Posting on:

· One Health News page

·Publications page

·Upcoming Events page

Comments and suggestions also appreciated...

 Please send to c/o Contents Manager

Cancer Surgeon and One Health Advocate Saves Human Lives - Monday, May 24, 2010

 Cancer Surgeon and One Health Advocate Saves Human Lives in Tampa, Florida (USA)

Prominent oncology surgeon and One Health supporter, Mokenge P. Malafa, MD has been saving lives at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute in Tampa, Florida (USA) for years. Dr. Malafa is chair, department of gastrointestinal oncology, section head, pancreatic oncology and program leader, gastrointestinal tumor program at Moffitt.

On May 20, 2010, Bruce Kaplan, DVM, a successful high risk hepatocellular carcinoma surgical patient after five years presented his surgeon, Dr. Malafa with a copy of the landmark One Health book, Human-Animal Medicine – Clinical Approaches to Zoonoses, Toxicants and other Shared Health Risks by Yale Medical School’s  Peter M. Rabinowitz, MD, MPH and Florida State Department of Health’s Lisa A. Conti, DVM, MPH">

Dr. Mokenge Malafa, left, being presented with One Health textbook by his patient, Dr. Bruce Kaplan, right.
Dr. Kaplan, a retired veterinarian, is a member of the autonomous, pro bono One Health Initiative website team that manages the website’s contents.  Other One Health team members are Laura H. Kahn, MD, MPH, MPP, Thomas P. Monath, MD, and Jack Woodall, PhD.


ProMED-mail: A Valuable One Health Asset Worldwide - Tuesday, May 18, 2010

ProMED-mail: A Valuable One Health Asset Worldwide

“The costs of doing a poor job tracking infectious diseases as they move between animals and humans have been staggering over the last 60 years.  ProMED-mail (please see our ProMED page on this website) makes a valiant and remarkable effort to overcome this deficit.  A cadre of physicians, veterinarians and other health scientists participate.

Species-jumping pathogens have caused more than 65 percent of infectious disease outbreaks in the past six decades, and have racked up more than $200 billion in economic losses worldwide over the past 10 years, according to a report issued last year September by the U.S. Institute of Medicine (IOM) and the National Research Council. 

Lack of communication between those tracking human and animal health has led to missed opportunities to detect and quickly contain species-crossing pathogens, the report notes.

To improve coordination and communication between groups, ProMED’s current staff of nearly 40 experts in 16 countries includes 8 veterinarians and veterinary medical health specialists -- one in Thailand, one in Cameroon, one in Israel, one in Tanzania, and four in the U.S.  The ProMED staff recently reviewed ProMED postings from 1996 to 2004 and found that more than 10,000 reports on animal disease were posted during that interval. Approximately 30 percent covered diseases that can be transmitted between animals and humans.  The remaining were related to animal diseases in both domestic animals and wildlife.”

Information provided by:

Larry Madoff, MD, Editor – ProMED-mail  [Edited for One Health Initiative website by Jack Woodall, PhD, ProMED associate editor]

‘International Zoonosis Research Institute’, Islamabad, Pakistan Links to One Health Initiative website - Thursday, May 13, 2010


‘International Zoonosis Research Institute’, Islamabad, Pakistan Links to One Health Initiative website



Information Provided by:


Nasir Shah Naqvi, PhD
Chairman International Zoonosis Research Institute 

Suite No 5 Second Floor Sajad Shrif Plaza

G 11 Markaz

Islamabad, Pakistan


University of Pittsburgh (USA), Center for Global Health Links with One Health Initiative Website - May 4, 2010 - Tuesday, May 04, 2010

University of Pittsburgh (USA), Center for Global Health Links with One Health Initiative Website - May 4, 2010




Information provided by:


Joanne Russell, MPPM, RN, CCRC, Director



Donald S. Burke, MD

UPMC-Jonas Salk Professor of Global Health
Associate Vice Chancellor for Global Health

University Library, University of Illinois (USA) at Urbana-Champaign in Forefront of One Medicine/One Health - Saturday, May 01, 2010

University Library, University of Illinois (USA) at Urbana-Champaign in Forefront of One Medicine/One Health


The University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has and continues to support/promote the One Medicine/One Health initiative.  Their website now links to other significant One Health websites including the One Health Initiative website.  This makes them the 50th known national and international website linking with the One Health Initiative website




“From The University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine Strategic Plan:


Center for One Medicine

We are proposing a new University-wide program that would help prepare society to address the animal and human dimensions of emerging public health issues, such as avian influenza and anti-microbial resistance. This program will support studies at the intersection of wildlife disease, sustainable agriculture, conservation medicine, and human and environmental health. Ultimately, this work will inform and improve public health policy.”

University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine (USA) Links Website with One Health Initiative website - Wednesday, April 28, 2010

University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine (USA) Links Website with One Health Initiative website  and


Information provided by:


Kelly Stratton

Communication Specialist

School of Veterinary Medicine

University of Pennsylvania


Excellent One Health Brochure - Developed by the U.S. National Park System - Tuesday, April 27, 2010


See - Excellent One Health Brochure

Developed by the U.S. National Park System:

 National Park Service Office of Public Health, Wildlife Health, Integrated Pest management, and Risk Management. 

Available on website Publications page -

New Zealand One Health Advocate to Receive “Office of the New Zealand Order of Merit” (ONZM) - Thursday, April 22, 2010

New Zealand One Health Advocate to Receive “Office of the New Zealand Order of Merit” (ONZM)


The Governor General of New Zealand will present the “Office of the New Zealand Order of Merit” (ONZM) award—the New Zealand version of the “Most Excellent Order of the British Empire” (OBE)—on Tuesday April 27, 2010, to veterinarian, Dr. James Daulby Edwards. For services to the veterinary profession and the community.”


A longstanding supporter and advocate of the One Health concept, Dr. Edwards represents the Minister of Agriculture on the Veterinary Council of New Zealand. He and his wife, Pam work with the health sector in the development and maintenance of online health resource databases.


Dr. Edwards recently participated in a seminar conducted by the New Zealand Medical Council which had asked the United Kingdom’s Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) to conduct an assessment of aspects of the Council's work.  During their visit to New Zealand, CHRE staff had offered to hold a Good Practice seminar and present on their office, their role, healthcare regulation in the UK and examples of good practice by the regulators overseen by the CHRE.  The CHRE was very interested in New Zealand regulatory practice and they followed their presentation with a roundtable discussion. 


According to Dr. Edwards, Harry Cayton, chief executive of the CHRE since August 2007, and Michael Andrews, who manages the CHRE Scrutiny and Quality Team, presented the UK approach to the seminar and emphasized the principles of good regulation.  They expressed that, “Regulators function on behalf of the public.  Excessive and restrictive regulation is not necessarily better.  ‘Right touch’ regulation is based on a proper evaluation of the risks.  Professionals need the framework within which to work.”


Dr. Jim Edwards is currently the managing director of World Veterinary Consultants, an international veterinary consultancy.  In addition, he is editor and contents manager of the website and newsletter of the World Veterinary Association  Dr. Edwards was the past President of the World Veterinary Association and the Federation of Asian Veterinary Associations.  He has received The World Veterinary Epidemiology Society James H. Steele Award and the New Zealand Veterinary Association Outstanding Service Award.





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