Vice Director of United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Ryan Washburn, said two-thirds of all infectious human diseases come from animals. Pathogen which is dangerous has to be identified and the infected animal has to be treated before becoming a threat to human’s health and global health security.
“As an example, in West Africa, Ebola had affected around 30 thousand people and 11 thousand of them died. It damages the health system, economy, and the community,” said Ryan at Senate Hall UGM on Tuesday (13/2) during Pre-launching and Seminar entitled Multisector Guide in Facing Zoonosis and Emerging Infectious Diseases.
Therefore, alert plans in facing pandemic becomes a complex thing which requires an integrated work frame among programme, process, and planning guide. All of them can be enhanced and adapted in various sectors both national and regional levels.
In order to implement this, cross-sector coordination enhancement is required by placing national and international institutions in the prevention and control of zoonosis measures as well as emerging infectious diseases.
“By cooperation, we can strengthen health system for animals, wild animals, and humans, thus extraordinary event can be well monitored, controlled, and responded,” said Ryan.
Ryan Washburn said Indonesia has been working hard for these past two decades in enhancing alertness and response towards pathogenic bird flu and other emerging infectious diseases. Indonesia, according to Ryan, has played an important role at the regional and global level in preventing and controlling diseases as well as strengthening global health security.
“The decrease of the number of extraordinary events and human cases becomes a proof of the success of Indonesia,” said Ryan.
In order to strengthen this effort, Ryan Washburn said the government of the United States through US Agency for International Development (USAID) feels honored to be involved with Indonesian Coordinating Ministry of Human Development and Culture as well as several stakeholders in making and researching Multi-Sector Guide Book. This guidebook is an important instrument and policy reference for conducting coordination among stakeholders that are relevant to the non-natural disaster alertness and response, both at national and regional levels.
“Aside from providing real benefits for Indonesia, this guidebook is also potential to become the best practical instrument for other countries in facing the same challenges,” he added.
Expert staff from Sustainable Development Goals sector in the Ministry, Ghofur Akbar Dharma Putra, S.E., M.Com. said zoonosis and emerging diseases not only become the responsibility of the ministry but also other ministries. Infectious diseases issue is strongly related to the animal, environment, and human health issues. The disaster has a high risk and may cause different policies, thus a guidebook is required to prevent this.
Reading out a welcoming speech from Governor of Special Region of Yogyakarta, drg. Pembayun. S., M.Ke, the Head of Health Institution Yogyakarta, said human’s behavior in the world in a large scale contributes to the rise of zoonosis, including population pressure, deforestation, agricultural intensification, wild animal global trade, and excessive meat consumption. If these conditions keep happening, it will initiate the emergence of new zoonosis diseases.
“Currently, researchers are starting to see and recognize how environmental damages, including global warming, deforestation, and chemical pollution in the sea can cause negative impacts toward the health and balance of flora and fauna, including humans and animals,” said Pembayun.
Therefore, according to Pembayun, in order to face the complexity, all parties are expected to not neglect the correlation among humans, animals, animal husbandry, wild animals, social environment, and their ecology. An integrative approach to human and animal health in social and environmental context is required.
On the other hand, UGM Rector, Prof. Ir. Panut Mulyono, M.Eng., D.Eng. said in order to control and mitigate the zoonosis threat, One Health concept which emphasizes the thinking system, collaboration, and trans-discipline becomes the right choice to overcome those diseases. One Health concept consists of three perspectives which are environmental health, animal’s health, and human’s health. UGM has a very strategic position to contribute in addressing issues which require trans-discipline sciences.
“We deliver our appreciation towards Co-ordinating Ministry of Human Development and Culture, USAID, and UGM that raise One Health issue which encourages UGM to work cross-sectorally to address strategic issues in the health sector, zoonosis, and emerging diseases because those are serious threats to our society,” said Panut.