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Vietnam One Health University Network (VOHUN)

The Hanoi School of Public Health, supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Emerging Pandemic Threats RESPOND project, today held the first meeting of the Vietnam One Health University Network (VOHUN) in Nha Trang City to promote an effective national response to animal diseases that could affect human health. VOHUNET is the result of advocacy efforts to establish a Southeast Asia One Health University Network (SEAOHUN) to address these types of diseases outbreaks.

The organization of a network of universities seeks to increase regional coordination in the response to disease outbreaks. “Today’s event will lay the foundation for how Vietnamese universities address and advance the One Health concept in areas such as training and research,” said USAID Vietnam Mission Director Francis Donovan. The Vietnamese network plans to register 18 universities as part of its network of schools of medicine, public health, and veterinary medicine. The Hanoi School of Public Health, Hanoi Medical University, and Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Hanoi University of Agriculture will act as the focal institutions for the newly formed network. The meeting gathered representatives of USAID, RESPOND, Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education and Training, Ministry of Science and Technology as well as representatives from 10 universities throughout Vietnam.

Participants discussed plans to establish a One Health university network comprised of Vietnamese universities, assessed One Health training and research gaps in VOHUN partners, and worked with target ministries to develop One Health trainings and research strategies. The One Health approach recognizes that human health, animal health, and ecosystem health are inextricably linked, and that collaboration across sectors is needed to achieve more rapid and effective responses with benefits to public, animal, and environmental health.