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Policy & Global Development

2022: The Year of One Health in Spain and Europe?

Series | Policy Briefs #42


[This document is a one of a series of discussion notes addressing fundamental questions about the global health. Its purpose is to transfer scientific knowledge to the public conversation and decision-making process. The papers are based on the best information available and may be updated as new information comes to light.]


Written by Alberto Rocamora, Clara Marín, Clara Ballesté, Sara M. Soto and Cristina O'Callaghan (ISGlobal), this document explains how the possible animal origin of SARS-CoV-2 has increased interest in the One Health approach that considers the intersection between the environment and human and animal health. This integrative perspective can be very useful for analysing and preventing phenomena such as pandemics and antimicrobial resistance.

The European Union (EU) and United Nations have made extensive use of it in the last years but in the coming months we may see the One Health perspective being consolidated in the European health policies thanks to efforts on the part of the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

Late last year, Spain published its Strategic Plan for Health and Environment for the period 2022-2026, clearly inspired by the One Health approach. The overall objective of this plan is to prevent health risks arising from environmental factors and determinants. It was conceived in an integrative manner, through an analysis of the possible effects of climate change and biodiversity loss on the distribution of vectors with the highest transmissibility. 

The document presents some recommendations to continue along this path in order to achieve a broad vision of health that will hep us face current and future challenges.