PRESS RELEASE “IHR-PVS National Bridging Workshop” 13 – 15th March 2018 Tashi Namgay Resort, Paro

received_10155692351563999The health of humans and animals is interlinked and majority of emerging, re-emerging, and endemic human diseases have their origins in animals, and diseases of animals can have additional implications for human health through food safety and food security. More than 60% known human pathogens originate from animals and about 75% emerging infectious diseases are zoonotic in nature. Therefore, there is a shared responsibility and synergic potential for collaboration between public and animal health sectors in the efforts to combat zoonotic diseases.

The Department of Medical Services, Ministry of Health and Department of Livestock, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests are jointly organizing National IHR-PVS Bridging Workshop from 13 to 15 March 2017 in collaboration with World Health Organization (WHO) and World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) at Tashi Namgay Resort, Paro. The main objective of the National Bridging Workshop is to provide opportunity for both human and animal health services to review current collaboration gaps in key technical areas and to develop a joint road-map of corrective measures and strategic investments to improve the work at the animal-human interface in the prevention, detection and control of zoonotic diseases.

In order to achieve the sustainable improvement of National Veterinary Services’ compliance with the OIE standards, in particular on the quality of Veterinary Services, the OIE has developed the Performance of Veterinary Services (PVS) Pathway which is composed of a range of tools to assist countries to objectively assess and address the main weaknesses of the Veterinary Services. Bhutan is one of the few countries in Asia who successfully carried out the series of PVS evaluation.

DSCF1431WHO Member States adopted a legally binding instrument, the International Health Regulations (2005), for the prevention and control of events that may constitute a public health emergency of international concern. Bhutan recently completed Joint External Evaluation for IHR through technical support and financial support from WHO.

OIE and WHO consider the refinement of respective WHO IHR-MEF tools and OIE PVS Pathway at country level would result in better alignment of capacity building approach and strategies between human and animal health sectors.

A total of 65 national participants from Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (Department of Livestock and Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority), Ministry of Health, Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Sciences of Bhutan and Royal University of Bhutan. The human and animal health sector participants include policy makers, technical experts and field officials.  The National Bridging workshop is being organized with the technical support from OIE and WHO with financial support from WHO. Resource persons from OIE and WHO are facilitating and guiding the participants to critically review current collaboration gaps in key technical areas and to develop a joint road-map of corrective measures and strategic investments to improve the work at the animal-human interface in the prevention, detection and control of zoonotic diseases.

The opening session of the three days National Bridging Workshop was graced by His Excellency Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji, Hon’ble Minister, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests. Other Senior Government officials present at the opening ceremony are the Secretary of Ministry of Health; Dasho Dzongdag, Paro; Director General, Department of Livestock and Directors from MOAF, MOH and Universities.

 Reported by: AHD, DoL

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