One Health WASH: an AMR-smart integrative approach to preventing and controlling infection in farming communities

Pinto Jimenez CE , Keestra SM, Tandon P, et al.

7 March 2023

Access via BMJ

Publication summary

The concept of ‘One Health’ is a framework that recognises the interconnectedness of human and animal health, and the environment. This framework applies well to the complexity of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) where it is recognised that antimicrobial-resistant pathogens spread across these three domains. Yet, the One Health concept often remains on paper and fails to materialize in real-world AMR interventions. The authors suggest that the integration of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) measures in communities with farm biosecurity would be beneficial in reducing the spread of AMR.

Who this is for

  • Policy-makers
  • Funders

Key findings

  • Despite a significant proportion of the global population, especially in Low and Middle- Income Countries, lives in close contact to farms, infection and prevention control measures at this interface are currently overlooked.
  • While concepts of community WASH and farm biosecurity share many similarities, strategies are often implemented separately and the fields work in silos.
  • Many WASH interventions only address access and availability of clean water and adequate sanitation to stop enteric infections and do not aim to directly reduce exposure to pathogens coming from animals and farms.
  • On the other hand, on-farm biosecurity measures do not normally take into account human health and focus primarily on the wellbeing of animals.
  • There are clear advantages in integrating the two systems with repercussions not only on community health but also on the economy.
  • The authors formulate a series of integrated interventions spanning across various domains including education, awareness, infrastructures and water management and many more,  in communities living in close proximity to farms.

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