The Conversation

Academic rigor, journalistic flair

Coronavirus: Fear of a pandemic, or a pandemic of fear?

January 31, 2020 11.11am EST SEE full article at

"... International response to this coronavirus also demonstrates considerable improvement, with rapid information flow and reporting of cases by Chinese authorities. But governance challenges remain, along with a growing awareness of the importance of what’s known as a One Health approach to pandemic outbreaks.

A One Health strategy recognizes that the health of humans is intricately linked to that of animals and their environments. In practice, it draws upon experts from human, animal and environmental health sciences, along with those in the humanities and social sciences, to build a response infrastructure that emphasizes information-sharing and co-ordination of actions across multiple sectors. ...

... Public health, animal health, agriculture

Progress has also been made to integrate surveillance and governance at the global level across the three international agencies responsible for public health, animal health and agriculture.

But with no consensus yet on how to globally govern zoonotic outbreaks, there is still considerable room for improvements that build on One Health principles.  ...

... Separating the impact that deeply integrated historic, political and economic factors has on zoonotic disease makes clear the importance of social sciences in a One Health approach.

All of this shows that any effective response to outbreaks such as 2019-nCoV requires a One Health response. Our nascent Canadian-based Global 1HN network, comprising a trans-disciplinary array of One Health expertise, is working closely with federal policy partners and other networks globally to use existing experience and to generate new knowledge in support of more effective governance of infectious disease risk. ... "