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Smith, Young co-introduce 'One Health' bill to combat animal-borne diseases

Wednesday, Sens. Tina Smith, D-Minn., and Todd Young, R-Ind., introduced their bipartisan Advancing Emergency Preparedness Through One Health Act, which is intended to improve public health preparedness by ensuring federal agencies advance a "One...

Sen. Tina Smith
Sen. Tina Smith

Wednesday, Sens. Tina Smith, D-Minn., and Todd Young, R-Ind., introduced their bipartisan Advancing Emergency Preparedness Through One Health Act, which is intended to improve public health preparedness by ensuring federal agencies advance a "One Health" approach.

According to a news release, One Health is billed as the idea human and animal health are linked, and they should be studied together, so as to better prevent and respond to disease outbreaks. The bill is intended to improve coordination among those studying animal and human health by requiring the Department of Health and Human Services and the Agriculture Department to adopt a One Health framework with other agencies.

"Minnesota was hit by an avian flu outbreak a few years back, and since then I've talked with Minnesotans about how we can work to prevent future outbreaks because they take a real toll on families and the economy," Smith stated in the release. "I pushed adopting a 'One Health' approach while I served as lieutenant governor, and now I'm continuing that work in the Senate. We need to recognize the connection between human, animal and environmental health so preparedness efforts meet the needs of all people, all ages, and all communities."

Through the Advancing Emergency Preparedness One Health Act, the One Health framework would:

• Advance workforce development related to preventing and responding to disease outbreaks in animals and humans;

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• Improve coordination between federal agencies studying human, animal health and the environment; and

• Foster understanding of the connections between human, animal and environmental health.

Related Topics: TINA SMITHHEALTHCARE
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