Essential veterinary education in emerging infections, modes of introduction of exotic animals, zoonotic diseases, bioterrorism, implications for human and animal health and disease manifestation

B B Chomel, N Marano
Revue Scientifique et Technique 2009, 28 (2): 559-65
A fundamental role of the veterinary profession is the protection of human health through wholesome food and control of diseases of animal origin, especially zoonoses. Therefore, training of veterinary students worldwide needs to face the new challenges posed by emerging infections, both from wildlife and domestic animals, as well as risks from bio/agroterrorism. New courses emphasising recognition, response, recovery and prevention must be developed to respond to natural or intentionally induced emerging diseases and zoonoses. Training programmes in applied epidemiology, zoonoses and foreign animal diseases are crucial for the development of a strong workforce to deal with microbial threats. Students should learn the reporting pathways for reportable diseases in their countries or states. Knowledge of the principles of ecology and ecosystems should be acquired during pre-veterinary studies. Elective classes on wildlife diseases, emphasising wildlife zoonotic diseases, should be offered during the veterinary curriculum, as well as a course on risk communication, since veterinarians are frequently in the position of having to convey complex information under adverse circumstances.

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