One Health Day at JABSOM

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One Health Symposium speakers Dr. MIchelle Barbieri, Lead, Hawaiian Monk Seal Research Program (left), and Dr. Bonnie Buntain, Academic Program Officer, University of Arizona College of Veterinary Medicine (right).

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On September 2, 2022, JABSOM hosted a series of events focused on promoting the integration of the One Health approach, which recognizes the interconnection between people, animals, plants, and their shared environment, into clinical practice, education, and research.  

In the morning, the Department of Tropical Medicine, Medical Microbiology, and Pharmacology hosted One Health guest speaker Dr. Bonnie Buntain of the University of Arizona.  Trained as a veterinarian but also experienced in public health and global health, Dr. Buntain was the founding head of the Department of Ecosystem and Public Health at the University of Calgary  in Canada, and currently is responsible for embedding One Health as a formal component of the veterinary curriculum at the University of Arizona College of Veterinary Medicine.  Dr. Buntain met with Tropical Medicine faculty and students to discuss new and ongoing projects with a One Health component, and presented a public seminar on applying this transdisciplinary approach to address global health challenges.

That afternoon, first and second year (MS1 and MS2) medical students participated in a One Health Symposium which featured keynote talks by Dr. Buntain and Dr. Michelle Barbieri, supervisory veterinary medical officer and lead of the Hawaiian Monk Seal Research program.  Dr. Buntainʻs talk explored the significance of the transdisciplinary One Health approach in clinical practice, while Dr. Barbieriʻs presentation described utilizing the One Health strategy to ensure the sustained recovery of the endangered Hawaiian Monk seal population.  The day ended with MS1 and MS2 group discussions of a variety of One Health case studies ranging from how to approach the challenges of vaccinating nomadic pastoralists in Chad to the importance of transdisciplinary communication to improve the diagnosis of leptospirosis in humans and their companion animals.

The symposium was planned by MS2 student Sameer Kejriwal and Dr. Sandra Chang, Professor of Tropical Medicine and advisor for the One Health Interest Group and the new Deanʻs Certificate of Distinction in One Health.  Serving as facilitators for the group discussions were Dr. Jourdan McMillan (Tropical Medicine faculty), Dr. Jill Yoshicedo (Head Veterinarian, Honolulu Zoo), Dr. Jerrisa Ching (Community Veterinarian), Tropical Medicine graduate students Olivia Smith and Mallory Wilson, and MS2 One Health Interest Group members Sameer Kejriwal, ZoeAnn Kon, Josh Kepler, and Carley Kida.  Dr. Buntainʻs visit was generously sponsored by the Vieth History of Medicine Lectureship.

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