Fighting zoonoses in Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Nepal (ABN)- Increasing awareness, prevention, & control of zoonoses

Starting Date: March 2014
Ending Date: March 2017
Location: Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Nepal
Donor(s): EC, One Health Programme in Asia
Implementation Partner(s): Relief International, UK (Lead), Bu Ali Rehabilitation and Aid Network (BARAN), Afghanistan

The threat of zoonoses, which are naturally transmitted between vertebrate animals and humans, is particularly serious in the least developed countries, where people often cohabitate with their animals and do not have access to information or equitable resources for combating health concerns. In Nepal there are reported case of the animal origin infectious diseases such as avian influenza, foot and mouth disease (FMD), PPR and bluetongue that causes annual losses of about US$ 230 million. Nepal has recorded eleven outbreaks of HPAI from 2009 to till 2012 and the country is at high risk, with the disease outbreaks recorded in China to the north & in India to the south. Nepal is also on two routes for migratory birds that are known to be carriers of the disease. There are joint initiatives of the Ministry of Health & Population, and the Ministry of Agriculture Development trying to minimize zoonoses, and it has been realized that further emphasis on improving filed level reporting and community participation is necessary. 
 
In this background, ANSAB in partnership with Relief International has been implementing European Union’s One Health Asia Programme – OHAP (Fighting zoonoses in Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Nepal (ABN)- Increasing awareness, prevention, & control of zoonoses). The project is premised on the One Health approach that has objectives to improve health and wellbeing through the mitigation of risks and crises that originate at the interface between humans, animals, and their various environments. OHAP focuses on a multi-sectoral and collaborative “whole of society” approach to managing health hazards, as a systemic change of perspective in the management of risk. The current initiative – increasing awareness, prevention, and control of zoonoses has specific objective to strengthen capabilities in the three least developed countries in Asia to address and prepare for risks related to infectious diseases through the promotion of collaborations & networking.
 
ANSAB as the country focal point of Nepal implemented the project in Chitwan, Rupandehi and Banke districts of Nepal. With the project, ANSAB capacitated 33 youth clubs, 30 school health clubs and 90 community members benefitting a total of 6561 direct beneficiaries. The project also trained 180 government extension workers & officials and 90 school teachers; developed cold chain capacity of DLSOs and DPHOs in the three districts through training and equipment support; developed common platform at the project districts and respective regions to coordinate and deal with the issues related to one health; supported the government for the development of National One Health Strategy Framework; and strengthened Agriculture and Forestry University of Nepal with laboratory support, 10 student research support and curriculum development on One Health.