A fourth good reason to attend the … “One Health” Session Scheduled for the North American Veterinary Conference (NAVC), in Orlando, Florida (USA) Monday, January 17,  2011 By scrolling down, you can read about the first three good reasons to attend.  These were described and prepared by Dr. Kate Hodgson (posted November, 29, 2010); Dr. Kirsten Gilardi (posted August 26, 2010); and Dr. Paul P. Calle (posted August 13, 2011).  You may see the entire NAVC One Health program scheduled by scrolling down to the posted News item of Saturday, July 10, 2010. A fourth outstanding featured speaker attraction: Dr. Donald F. Smith is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) and a prominent, highly acclaimed former Dean at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine (1997-2007).  Dr. Smith graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College (Canada) in 1974, then trained at the University of Pennsylvania as a large animal surgeon.  Apart from a four-year period at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he has spent the remainder of his career at Cornell University (USA) as a surgeon and professor.  While serving as the ninth dean, Cornell reclaimed the number one designation by U.S. News and World Report, a distinction that it currently holds. As student and teacher of veterinary medical history and public policy, Dr. Smith has lectured extensively on the future challenges and opportunities for the veterinary medical profession. He also currently serves as chair of Cornell’s Admission Committee.     Abstract: Our Veterinary Legacy: One Health   By Donald F. Smith, DVM, DACVS Professor of Surgery and Austin O. Hooey Dean, Emeritus Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y. 14853 (USA)   “Comparative medicine was an integral part of the fabric of human and animal health in the late 19th century. Several of the world’s leading physicians and veterinarians were colleagues and personal friends as they led their respective medical and veterinary colleges and research centers. Some veterinary deans held both MD and DVM degrees (or their equivalent).   Two overarching events—the loss of the horse to the internal combustion engine, and the growth of the land grant colleges for sustaining veterinary education—led to the closure of most of the urban-based veterinary colleges. In addition, the veterinary educational and practice culture moved from comparative medicine to the health and well-being of agricultural species. Public health issues remained important, but not as high a priority as they had been in the formative years of the profession.   By the 1930s, veterinary medicine had drifted apart from human medicine and agricultural- and animal-related public health became largely the provenance of veterinarians. Funding for veterinary colleges was the responsibility of agriculture, not health.   With the resurgence of interest in zoonotic diseases associated with such events as the outbreak of West Nile virus, Avian flu, melamine food contamination, and the increased use of raw milk, awareness of comparative medicine (though now more commonly designated as one medicine or one health) began to develop in recent years. If there ever was a déjà vu in veterinary medicine, this was it, though perhaps this one is not an allusion!”   This presentation provides an overview of the “Back to the Future” story of comparative medicine, and challenges us to consider two additional and far-reaching priorities that represent the foundation of future directions in one health. Practicing veterinarians will find several important and useful take-home messages from this and subsequent presentations throughout the day-long symposium.”   Note:  A special evening session is planned for Monday January 17th, 2011 from 6:00 -7:30 P.M. where conference attendees can meet and hear brief One Health presentations by prominent One Health advocates/supporters: veterinarians Lisa A. Conti, DVM, MPH (Director of the Florida Department of Health’s Environmental Health Division); Carina Blackmore, DVM, PhD (Florida State Public Health Veterinarian); and physician, Kevin M. Sherin, MD, MPH - Director, Orange County (Florida) Health Department (USA).  Drs. Conti, Blackmore and Sherin were recently named to the One Health Initiative website teams’ Advisory Board (Hon.) Addendum:  The One Health Initiative website team has just been informed that the President of the American Medical Association, Cecil B. Wilson, MD also expects to be present at the special evening session.  Dr. Wilson recently reaffirmed his strong support of One Health with the following August 30, 2010 statement: The AMA strongly supports the One Health Initiative, the collaborative effort of multiple disciplines to attain optimal health for humans, animals, and our environment. More than 60 percent of human infectious diseases and the preponderance of emerging infectious diseases have an animal vector. Better collaboration is needed between human and veterinary medicine to protect the public health. The One Health Initiative is playing an important role in achieving this goal.