Food Coalition

Collaborative partnership for One Health in Africa

COVID-19 is hitting Africa, driving further vulnerabilities to a continent that is already facing multiple socio-economic and environmental challenges and crises including food insecurity, poverty, depleting natural resources, biodiversity loss, and climate change. In response to these multiple challenges, countries and partners recognized the drivers of COVID-19 and other pandemics. Indeed, similar to the likely emergence of COVID-19, over 60% of s emerging infectious diseases have come from animals, and of those, most have come from wildlife and spilled over into people directly, or were transmitted to people via livestock. The main risk factor for a new pandemic is the increased contact rate among people, wildlife and livestock. Forest fragmention and deforestation, landscape changes and agricultural development, extractive industries, wild meat hunting and butchering, and unregulated informal agri-food value chains, including live animal markets, provide opportuntites for humans to be exposed to potential disease agents. Globalization can carry disease agents between countries and across continents in a day. Importantly, a critical and urgent focus is needed to strengthen collaboration across different sectors and partners at regional and international levels using a One Health (OH) approach that prevents future diseases by addressing the drivers of emergence and strengthening capacities for early warning, detection and rapid response if a spill-over to people occurs.

Efforts and programmes to address pandemic threats in Africa in a coordinated manner have started through the Africa Tripartite OH Regional Coordination Group (FAO-OIE-WHO). Based on Regional level dialogues and webinars that FAO has convened, OH initiatives and programmes remain scattered and do not necessarily include representatives from all relevant stakeholders and sectors, e.g. those of Forestry, Wildlife, Natural Resources management and Environment. At Africa level, a number of continental sectoral frameworks have been developed and endorsed, but there is a need to ensure that these frameworks, policies and strategies are operationalized in a harmonized manner, consistent with OH. This action sheet is developed to address this gap and strengthen coordination, planning and capacities at Africa level for decision making and implementation at the sub-regional and continental levels, building on existing partnerships and structures. Implementing OH in a coordinated and collaborative manner is crucial for optimizing pandemic prevention and preparedness, to avoid duplication of efforts and resources, and to maximize action and impact at continental level.

Priority Areas of work: One Health Approach - Preventing the next Zoonotic Pandemic
SDG: 1. No Poverty, 2. Zero Hunger, 13. Climate Action, 14. Life Below Water, 15. Life on Land, 17. Partnerships to achieve the Goal
Level: Regional
Region: Africa
Country: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Swaziland, São Tomé e Príncipe, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Budget: USD 12 million


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