One Health is the collaborative effort of multiple disciplines working locally, nationally, and globally to attain optimal health for people, animals, and the environment.
The Center for One Health Illinois focuses on fostering human, animal, and ecosystem health through the three broadly defined areas of education, research, and public outreach:
- Education: To educate of a new cadre of health professionals who understand the determinants and contributing factors affecting human, animal, and ecosystem health (One Health), how public health policy affects the health of all three, and how public health policy is developed
- Research: To understand disease processes that occur at the interface of human and animal activities and their effects on the environment
- Outreach: To improve our society’s preparedness and response to natural and intentional exposures of biological, chemical, and physical agents
Key to the Center for One Health Illinois is the DVM-MPH joint degree program, which enrolled its first students in 2005 in conjunction with the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Within the program’s first decade, 40 students had either completed both degrees or were enrolled in the program.
Other educational opportunities for students include:
- VCM 647: A four-week senior veterinary rotation, first offered in 2007, that focuses on field epidemiology, outbreak investigation, fieldwork, and data analysis.
- VCM 648: A public policy practicum elective course, introduced in fall 2008, that is open to students in all professional and graduate academic units and has attracted students from veterinary medicine, human medicine, engineering, community health, geography, neurobiology and law. A description of the course was published in the Journal of Veterinary Medical Education (JVME 36(4), 2009, 397-402.)
- VCM 671: An international public health course during which students traveled to Germany to study animal and public health infrastructure and policy in the European Union.
- CHSC 400: Public health concepts and practice (taught with the UIC School of Public Health)
- PATH 439: Health applications of geographic information systems (GIS)
Through the Center for One Health Illinois, researchers working in diverse biomedical disciplines agree to jointly train their graduate students in One Health concepts.
The center funds research by DVM-MPH students completing the capstone project required for the MPH degree. Funding is awarded on the basis of scientific merit of projects with strong animal, ecosystem, and human health components.
A list of capstone projects and publications can be found on the DVM-MPH site.
The Center for One Health Illinois steering committee consists of:
- Mark Dworkin, MD, MPHTM, Epidemiology Section Coordinator, School of Public Health, University of Illinois-Chicago
- Ned Hahn, PhD, Associate Professor Emeritus, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- Jack Herrmann, DVM, MPH, Director of DVM/MPH program, Center for One Health Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- Ron Hershow, MD, Interim Division Director, Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, University of Illinois-Chicago
- Lois Hoyer, PhD, Associate Dean for Research and Advanced Studies, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- Yvette Johnson, DVM, PhD, Clinical Epidemiologist, Center for One Health Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- James Slauch, PhD, Head, Department of Microbiology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- Herb Whiteley, DVM, PhD, DACVP, Professor Emeritus, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign