The Saint Louis Zoo’s Institute for Conservation Medicine in collaboration with Fontbonne University’s Center for One Health, Saint Louis University School of Medicine, University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine and Washington University in St. Louis will sponsor the fifth annual “One Health” fair on Saturday, April 14, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Saint Louis Zoo.
One Health is a worldwide strategy for expanding interdisciplinary collaboration and communication in all aspects of health care for humans, animals and the environment—all in the interest of advancing the health of each, with an emphasis on prevention.
At the One Health Fair, visitors can earn a prize (one per family) when they stop by four of the six stations where Zoo staff and local university students will explain the links between wildlife conservation and human health.
- Climate change: Discover how changing climates are affecting the lives and health of animals and humans.
- Water quality/availability: Water quality and availability issues are of global concern for animal and human health. Learn how you can reduce your impact on local water systems.
- Shared pathogens: Diseases that connect humans and animals threaten wildlife conservation and human public health. Learn what the Zoo is doing to help and what you can do to reduce the spread of disease.
- Ecosystems: Habitat loss increases human and domestic animal interaction with wildlife. Learn how shopping choices may help or hurt animal habitats around the world.
- Nature benefits: Spending time in nature or with animals has been proven to lower stress levels and decrease heart rates. Learn about the potential health benefits of visiting a zoo.
- Food security/safety: Healthy eating habits not only affect human health, but the health of the planet, too. Learn how the Zoo addresses these issues and how you can make food choices that benefit you and the Earth.
Admission to the Saint Louis Zoo and all One Health activities is free. The Zoo is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with the One Health Fair activities from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. For more information, visit stlzoo.org/ConservationMedicine.
About One Health
Conservation medicine addresses the growing disease challenges that threaten the survival of wild animal species and that negatively impact human public health. The field of conservation medicine emphasizes a multidisciplinary approach to study the interrelated nature of diseases in animals and humans, in the context of environmental change. In recent years, the term “One Health” has been coined and has similar objectives to conservation medicine, in that it aims to merge animal and human health to benefit both. As our human population reaches eight billion, and as people (with their domestic animals) move closer to wildlife populations and into wild lands, disease risks to wildlife, domestic animals and humans increase. Zoos have significant roles to play within conservation medicine and One Health initiatives. For more information, read Role of Zoos in One Health by Sharon L. Deem and Pam Dennis.