e-ISSN 1828-1427


Rivista trimestrale di Sanità Pubblica Veterinaria edita dall'Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale dell'Abruzzo e del Molise ‘G. Caporale’

A quarterly journal devoted to veterinary public health, veterinary science and medicine published by the Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale dell’Abruzzo e del Molise ‘G. Caporale’ in Teramo, Italy

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2009 - Volume 45 (1) January-March
Peter Rabinowitz, MD, MPH, Matthew Scotch, PhD, MPH & Lisa Conti, DVM, MPH  
Human and animal sentinels for shared health risks 23-34

The tracking of sentinel health events in humans in order to detect and manage disease risks facing a larger population is a well accepted technique applied to influenza, occupational conditions and emerging infectious diseases. Similarly, animal health professionals routinely track disease events in sentinel animal colonies and sentinel herds. The use of animals as sentinels for human health threats, or of humans as sentinels for animal disease risk, dates back at least to the era when coal miners brought caged canaries into mines to provide early warning of toxic gases. Yet the full potential of linking animal and human health information to provide warning of such shared risks from environmental hazards has not been realised. Reasons appear to include the professional segregation of human and animal health communities, the separation of human and animal surveillance data and evidence gaps in the linkages between human and animal responses to environmental health hazards. The One Health initiative and growing international collaboration in response to pandemic threats, coupled with development in the fields of informatics and genomics, hold promise for improved sentinel event coordination in order to detect and reduce environmental health threats shared between species.

Animal, Biodiversity, Comparative medicine, Environment, Genomics, Health, Medical informatics, Medicine, One Health, Sentinel, Surveillance, Zoonosis.

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    © Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale dell'Abruzzo e del Molise 2009