New York, November 17, 2020 – Intact and functional ecosystems provide the infrastructure for life, health, and well-being on our planet.
The overall decline of the planet’s species and ecosystems, coupled with the increased encroachment of
humankind into the planet’s remaining wild places, provides increased opportunity for disease.
targeted One Health approach seeks to identify where and how these health risks are emerging, while
supporting actions that reduce the overall risk to the health of humans, wildlife, animals, plants, and their
environments. Beyond our core field-based conservation efforts that support the conservation of
biodiversity and intact landscapes and seascapes, and in collaboration with our International Policy, Intact
Forests, and other programs/experts, WCS leverages its unique veterinary, health and conservation
capacity to deliver on five core One Health approaches:
- Track and Improve Wildlife Health: Apply innovative approaches to monitor and rapidly
respond to disease of wildlife to mitigate the threat of extirpation and extinction posed to
wildlife of multiple taxa from emerging wildlife pathogens.
- Monitor and Reduce Risk of Emerging Zoonosis: Monitor, analyze, and minimize wildlife
disease, and mitigate spillovers from wildlife-reservoirs, focusing on high-risk drivers of
emergence such as climate change, commercial wildlife trade and degradation of
- Mitigate Livestock Disease Transmission: Monitor and mitigate transmission of disease
across the human-domestic animal-wildlife interface.
- Build Veterinary Capacity: Build capacity and veterinary medical skills for monitoring,
prevention, and response to wildlife and zoonotic diseases. Significantly enhanced global
veterinary capacity is needed to deal with disease outbreaks, particularly in the least
developed countries. Training national staff in surveillance of wildlife, understanding
drivers for emerging diseases, and the value of a One Health approach builds in-country
sustainability and resilience.
- Catalyze Global Change: Leverage the conservation of intact land- and seascapes and their
health co-benefits, paired with our scientific, field, and policy capacity, to protect wildlife
and wild places, and to assess and highlight links between ecosystem integrity and health
as part of the growing global “One Health” movement.
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