Network for Evaluation of One Health

Workshops

NEOH workshops bring together NEOH members, interested researchers, and policy makers to report on network activities, disseminate products, and foster knowledge exchange and collaboration.


NEOH workshop Thessaloniki

 

Dr Anastasios Saratis, local organiser and moderator warmly welcomed participants and presented the programme for the day.

Barbara Haesler set the scene for the workshop by talking about some of the origins and history of One Health and describing some key milestones in the One Health community. She then moved on to describe the drivers, activities, and outcomes of NEOH highlighting the novelty of the definition of “One Healthness” and the use of assessment tools for a systematic evaluation of One Health initiatives. She then raised the question of the value of monitoring and evaluation and challenges associated with the evaluation of complex activities that can produce multiple outcomes that may be difficult to attribute to the initiative. She observed that in the evaluation of complex initiatives it may be equally relevant to look at the quality of the initiative instead of aiming to focus solely on the outcomes. Dr Haesler finalised her talk with the question whether benchmarking with the NEOH tools would be possible given the large heterogeneity of contexts, settings and epistemiologies.

Smaro Sotiraki then presented activities at the Veterinary Research Institute in Thessaloniki emphasising the idea of “One Health, One Solution”. She mentioned the lack of an established national One Health support system in Greece, with both the medical and veterinary services working apart, with some exceptions related to significant outbreaks such as the West Nile Fever outbreak. A first attempt in this direction was the establishment of the Hellenic Scientific Society of One Health.  They had notices that medical services and veterinary services were both focusing on (unusual) clinical signs, history taking, sample collection, diagnosis confirmation, but there was no link across animal and human species. Based on that joint PhD theses with other institutions started (e.g. medical school of AUTh) and a formal MoU with the Military General Hospital was signed for training personnel and supporting the diagnosis of parasitoses. They have also a signed agreement with the major water companies for the surveillance of surface, drinking and waste waters for microbial and parasitic infections. They also participate in a large project by HAO Demeter on the safety of surface waters assigned by the Ministry of Environment and Energy. Examples of parasites mentioned were Giardia and Cryptosporidia with the aim to estimate prevalence in different animal species and humans, characterise the zoonotic potential of those species and identify possible risk factors associated with infection, taking an interdisciplinary approach into account.

Kitty Maassen from the National Institute of Public Health in the Netherlands, “a small and crowded country” with 17 million people and approximately 120 million animals (all species) that cause problems once in a while, such as livestock-associated avian influenza, MRSA or Q-fever. During the Q-fever outbreak in 2007 it became evident that communication and collaboration across sectors was difficult, which set in motion a commissioned analysis that identified the need for a more systematic approach of sharing and assessing signals. As a result, there was a recommendation to improve early warning and control of (re-)emerging zoonoses. Consequently, an integrated human-veterinary risk analyses structure for efficient signalling, risk-assessment and control of emerging zoonoses in the Netherlands was established. It consists of an integrated structure (Signalling Forum Zoonoses SOZ) that assesses normal and urgent signals every month supported by a response team, outbreak management team, and an expert forum zoonoses when needed. There is also a two-way communication pathway between the core One Health risk analysis structure and administrative, government, industry, and other units (advice <-> request for information). The SOZ brings together the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, Community Health Services, Netherland Foods and Consumer Product Safety Authority, Wageningen Bioveterinary Research, Animal Health Service, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of University of Utrecht, and the Dutch Wildlife Health Centre. Examples of Schmallenberg virus, Seoulvirus and Brucella suis were used to illustrate how the integrated risk analysis structure successfully picks up new events and enables investigations, risk assessments and response. It was pointed out that institutional memory is crucial. A key success factor of the risk analysis structure is the long-term funding commitment from the Netherlands in combination with the associated official mandate. While the structure is functioning and funded under the ministries, for signalling collection it depends on the wider surveillance system and disease reporting by all health professionals, laboratories, and authorities, among others. Hence, its success is also greatly supported by the established surveillance infrastructure.

Dr Maassen also mentioned “COHESIVE: One Health structure in Europe” which is part of the One Health EJP and constitutes a roadmap towards an EU zoonoses risk-assessment or risk-analysis structure. It aims to collect and analyse surveillance and outbreak data on (foodborne) zoonoses and capacity building within and between EU countries. They also organise workshops that can be attended by others (full website soon available: http://onehealthejp.eu/).

Prof. Jože Starič then talked about One Health within public, medical and veterinary health in Slovenia. He pointed out that One Health focuses on the health of people, animals and ecosystems, which differentiates it from other interdisciplinary collaborations. He presented several public health organisations in Slovenia that use a One Health approach to address cases of disease. In the veterinary sector, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food (MAFF) created the body Administration of the Republic of Slovenia for Food Safety, Veterinary Sector and Plant Protection (AFSVSPP) that reports to the Ministry directly and has seven technical divisions supported by regional offices. The work is performed according to a yearly plan for monitoring of the agro-food chain, approval and registration of establishments (including laboratories). The National Veterinary Institute is part of the Veterinary Faculty and has all duties of such an institute, including designated laboratories, national reference laboratories, pathomorphological diagnostics and veterinary-hygienic services, review of the health status and treatment of fish and bees. The AFSVSPP Director General summons the members of the National Disease Control Centre (NDCC) that defines, manages and monitors the implementation of measures in case of a suspect of especially dangerous infectious disease. The NDCC brings together specialists from public and animal health sectors for this task. Slovenia has also established a cross-sectoral zoonotic unit that meets annually. There is a good One Health collaboration along humans health –animals health – safer environment supported by some legislation (zoonosis, drugs, residues), and research (individual level). A gap was identified at the educational level, as integrated education opportunities are scarce. The project Public Health in the Western Balkans – was established to promote communication among disciplines and build a One Health based educational master programme in Western Balkan countries to create One Health experts with graduates from various disciplines who have a global version of health problems, and who can learn a common language to establish public health plans and to solve problems from a OH points of view. This Tempus funded project included six institutions in six countries supported by higher education bodies with the aim to create nationally accredited programmes. The Advanced Master Training course gained accreditation in two countries and is on offer in Sarajevo and Pristina; it covers survey and surveillance systems, public health regulation and risks analysis, emergency preparedness and food security and food safety, decision-making, zoonotic and emerging diseases. For each subject, there is staff from the veterinary and medical sectors. The courses have generally been well received by students who claim that the study was useful for them and that they were happy to get involved in it, but they think also that it included too much obligations for 2 semester study.

The next speaker was Dr Alexandru Supeanu from the National Sanitary Veterinary and Food Safety Authority in Romania. He talked about implementing One Health in Romania, the lessons learned so far and institutionalisation of One Health. He adressed factors influencing success or failure, highlighting the importance of context and local factors, such as tradition, beliefs, social structures, and history. Historically, medicine and health was one of the five pillars on which Romanian Society was built on. For example, Victor Babes, Nicolaeu Paulescu, Ioan Cantacuzino, Ion Poenaru, and Vladimir Capatana were critical pioneers in health who made crucial contributions to the field of medicine. Due to this strong historical background “Physicians are small gods in Romania” and veterinarians are also valued very highly (secondary to physicians); consequently it is difficult for these professions to see other professions as equals. One Health Romania is a NGO with the mission to implement One Health in Romania (http://www.onehealth.ro/en/). So far, over 20 public and private legal entities from various domains have joined the NGO with over 200 individual members. A major milestone is the organisation of the 2nd  One Health Interregional European Conference Bucarest in September 2018:https://www.onehealthcommission.org/index.cfm/37526/90203/one_health__the_2nd_european_interregional_conference . More than 75% are NGOs, the others are academia, government, industry, and the public. Barriers in academia are the lack of One Health publications and the associated lack of research income. Some members are in the process of developing a One Health master education curricula, but there are no dedicated One Health funds and there is no training of future generations in One Health. Industry is waiting on the authorities to promote One Health regulation; “no regulations, no actions”. Authorities are slowed down in progress by political and economic constraints as well as political instability, with conflicts of interest (legal system, social history). In Romania, the general public does not have a connection to One Health, as very limited information reaches the public and there are no “One Health poster boys”. Once a believer, the public buys into the concept and very willingly shares it further. While NGOs are supportive and interested (they are the main promotor of the concept), they are often constrained by the lack of funds and bad publicity due to ill intent of some and hidden agenda. Alexandru Supeanu concluded that Romania is on a positive, albeit slow track and is hoping for major breakthroughs with the support of the authorities and the creation of One Health opportunities for students.

Dr Sara Savic then talked about the situation in Serbia (“we don’t have One Health funding, NGOs, associations, platforms or anything else; One Health is not even a fashion in Serbia”) before moving to the description of the case studies conducted in NEOH. She outlined the objectives of this working group, the selection of case studies, and the general approach used including the use of NEOH networking tools such as short term scientific missions and training schools that helped to learn how to use the NEOH tools. Because the majority of evaluators were not familiar with such evaluations, the learning curve was perceived to be very steep and the work intense. The evaluations in all case study teams were rather time consuming, but Dr Savic thought that it was worth it: She concluded that the new tools to measure One Healthness work and that they allow generating relevant and useful information on One Health initiatives.

Afifah Rahman-Shepherd then gave a presentation on evaluating One Health initiatives reporting on 100 One Health networks that they evaluated and their key findings and recommendations. They systematically looked for One Health networks in Europe, Africa and Asia and assessed their sectoral composition, stakeholder inclusion, activities (capacity building, communication and collaboration, surveillance and monitoring, research and development, advocacy, disease control, policy development, social research, risk management and emergencies), the networks’ aims, visions, missions, objectives, as well as outputs, funding and evaluation. It was found that there is no normative definition of how to operationalise One Health and that there is a dearth of monitoring and evaluation reports. She then reported on Chatham House’s work on indicators for the evaluation of One Health. Chatham House had elaborated a theory of change with activities, outcomes and impact; these elements were then discussed by international experts in Chatham House roundtable event. During this roundtable, the highest scoring indicators were M&E framework at the country level; expressed commitment; mechanism for cross-disciplinary working; routine data sharing; and routine reporting of data. The roundtable participants agreed that One Health indicators should be embedded in existing M&E frameworks and that a wide range of stakeholders should be engaged. Following the presentation, Afifah Rahman-Shepherd facilitated a discussion on the lack of One Health governance and operationalisation and how this could be addressed by the international One Health community. It was noted by one NEOH participant that One Health is such a big, all-encompassing approach that accountability is very difficult, if not impossible, and that more clearly delineated tasks may be more conducive to M&E. Other people observed that several international powerhouses have acknowledged One Health, but that this did not lead to funding for countries which can be a barrier in resource-scarce settings. One participant observed that convincing stories are needed to get support for One Health. Also, some of these gaps may be addressed by the new World Bank report “Operational framework for strengthening human, animal and environmental public health systems at their interface.”(http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/703711517234402168/Operational-framework-for-strengthening-human-animal-and-environmental-public-health-systems-at-their-interface) that, among others, summarises the available monitoring and evaluation tools.

During the panel discussion, Prof. Elias Papadopoulos introduced the Laboratory of Parasitology and Parasitic Diseases at the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Thessaloniki. He explained the services they offer in the laboratory and mentioned the good collaboration with the University hospital in Thessaloniki and other hospitals that require specific diagnostic testing for parasites. They also work with suspected cases with clinical signs that require testing for parasitic diseases such as leishmaniosis, toxoplasmosis, or toxocara. Often, healthy individuals are also subjected to testing, for example when health certificates are needed (e.g. staff working with foods), for refugees and immigrants. Prof. Papadopoulos believes that Greece makes use of a wide range of One Health opportunities and mechanisms, but that it is very often based on personal contact networks and the initiative taken by individuals. Dr Maria Linou told participants about the newly established Hellenic Scientific Society of One Health, www.onehealth-greece.com the first multidisciplinary, cross-sectoral scientific committee that has been established by different areas of health. It brings together the Hellenic Pasteur Institute, the National School of public Health, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Agriculture, universities, etc. The driving force behind the establishment of the Society were local champions in local networks. A key preceding event was the organisation of a workshop in 2015 that demonstrated big interest for a more formal structure that would span many different areas, sectors and disciplines. The mission of the new society is the implementation of the principles of One Health in Greece through scientific and social activities towards health professionals, decision-makers, government and public. Dr Dimitrios Arvanitis observed that the trend in medicine is towards holistic medicine and that One Health is an essential aspect of this. Through the collaboration between the Infectious Diseases Zoonoses laboratory of the 424 military hospital and the Veterinary Research Instituteis an improved  laboratory diagnosis of cryptosporidiosis and giardiasis was achieved;. Financial pressures and lack of funding is a constant challenge. It is an early collaboration, but they are willing to extend collaborations and learn from other specialisations. One issue to address is the perception that “One Health is a luxury” and that the authorities think there are more pressing challenges and therefore do not release funding. The private sector has been approached too in order to attract funding.

Finally, Vasileios Takavakoglou started his presentation with reference to Demosthenes who had “the skill to manipulate the crowds”. He said, “men of Athens, we need money, because without money, nothing can be done”. He then explained the bigger funding picture of funding and highlighted the importance of the project producing results, dissemination and use, and generating impact that would then once again influence policy and the funding structure and calls. He then took the audience through all steps from finding the right call and understanding it in detail to comprehending the main categories of funds available at the EU level (direct support, indirect support) to being smart in selecting proposals (think out of the box, do not wait for the perfect call, explore other/non-health areas, participate as small clusters of countries to start with) and proposal preparation (sell your idea on the first page, start much earlier than you think you would have to, mobilise the right partners, recognise that a proposal is not the same as paper writing, ensure logical flow and SMART objectives, explain the vision, describe impact). He explained the different programmes, thematic categories and beneficiaries and pointed out suitable calls and programmes, e.g. CHAFEA, International Cooperation and Development, Interreg, EEA grants, and Regional Cooperation grants. And he reminded us to “Never Ever Give Up”!

After meeting end a dinner was organised at Panellinion restaurant to round up a successful and interesting workshop.

 

Full programme details can be found here.


 

WG3 workshop on meta-analysis of One Health initiative,
Skopje, Macedonia, 25th – 27th September 2017

The Network for Evaluation of One Health (NEOH) organised a Working Group (WG) 3 workshop on the topic ”Meta-analysis of One Health (OH) initiatives” with the aim of working towards an integrated analysis of OH initiatives evaluated by WG2 with methods developed by WG1 during the project. The aim of WG3 is to perform the meta-study on the case studies produced in WG2 and to initiate the integration of additional study cases retrieved from the scientific literature.

Workshop participants in front of steps.

The participants of the workshop were mainly participants of WG3 group, but also attended by members of WG1 and WG2, because the meta-study requires the integration of the OHness index developed by WG1 and case studiesconducted in WG2. The workshop provided a few presentations by invited speakers, but mainly focused on “hands-on” working sessions where moderators introduced and facilitated various working tasks.

On the first day, participants were warmly welcomed by the local organiser, Mijalce Santa and by the chair of the Action, Barbara Haesler. Afterwards, the WG3 leader Vladimir Grosbois presented the proposed grid to characterise the context/system within which OH initiatives operate as well as the standardised description of OH initiatives. His presentation triggered animated discussions on the characterisation of OH initiatives. Lunch was organised in nearby restaurant and after lunch, participants had time to work on summarising/condensing the existing tools to assess One Healthness, i.e. the dimensions of OH thinking, learning, planning, working, sharing and system organisation; this session was moderated by Lisa Nielsen. The aim was to elaborate a simplified OHness index to apply it to studies from published literature. Later in the afternoon, online presentations were given on meta-study methodologies and qualitative meta-synthesis by the invited speakers Mark Edwards and Sally Thorne. Finally, Ivan Corbev gave a presentation on the COST Action Open Multiscale Systems Medicine (OpenMultiMed, http://www.cost.eu/COST_Actions/ca/CA15120) and other computer system and software research activities in the health domain. In the evening, the group enjoyed an excellent dinner in a local, traditional restaurant.

Participants at table with food

On the second day, Lisa Nielsen continued the moderation of the session to work towards a simplified grid to capture the One Healthness from studies in the published literature and various activities and discussions were initiated to simplify, test and refine this grid. After lunch in a nearby local restaurant Sara Savic presented the case studies conducted in WG2, which gave a useful starting point for Vladimir Grosbois to explain the theory of multi-variate analysis and illustrate the technical options for analyses using an existing dataset and the statistical software R. This formed the basis for a constructive discussion to discuss the methodological approach for the meta-study; moderated by Vladimir Grosbois and Sandra Buttigieg. The very fruitful day finished with suggestion for optional diner and networking between participants.

Participants during workshop

The third day was dedicated to the finalisation of the three spreadsheets to describe the system, the One Health initiatives and the One Healthness. Further, participants spent time identifying tasks and elaborating the working plan for the next months including identification of resource needs and roles and responsibilities. The workshop was rounded off with a discussion of proposals and ideas for further activities within the NEOH, before Barbara Haesler officially closed the meeting and expressed her heartfelt thanks to the organisers, leaders and participants.

Download Programme

 


Transdisciplinary Research Evaluation: from Methodological Challenges to Indicator Definition
Zurich, Switzerland 22nd-23rd June 2017

A two-day workshop (June 22nd and 23rd) that was organized by Dr. Martin Hitziger and Dr. Simon Rüegg, University of Zurich, Switzerland, provided the unique opportunity to link up experts on transdisciplinary evaluation from the fields of One Health, Sustainability Research, Energy Transition, and International Development.

The participants represented various institutions from these fields, e.g. NEOH, the Institute for Social-Ecological Research (ISOE), the Institute for Advances Sustainability Studies (IASS), the International Society for Disease Surveillance (ISDS), USAID, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (EAWAG), and ETH Zurich.

Download programme and participant list.

The venue at ETH Zurich’s TdLab provided just the right context for intense, in-depth discussions of transdisciplinary evaluation in these different fields.

participants listen to presentation

On the first day, challenges and approaches to transdisciplinary evaluation were presented, with a focus on the interacting nature of the evaluation activities and the project activities, the attribution problem of project impacts, and a multitude of indicators.

participants write on post-it notes

On the second day, commonalities and differences between fields, disciplines and approaches were further defined. The workshop used an interactive format with presentations, in-depth discussions, and cognitive mapping for defining commonalities and differences. Emphasis was also put on clarifying conceptual and terminological differences between the different schools of thought. Plenty of time was devoted to networking and opportunities for personal interactions between participants.

Participants listen to talk, with table of post-it notes in foreground

The outcomes will provide additional input for the NEOH evaluation approach and the handbook, especially in its ongoing collaboration with the International Society for Disease Surveillance. The workshop has raised awareness and initiated novel networks. Follow-up work will possibly result in a scientific publication, and several participants will continue collaborating on an individual basis to better understand how challenges of transdisciplinary evaluation are addressed in different fields.

 

Name  Title (click on title to download PDF of presentation)
Simon Rüegg,
WG1 co-leader
The One Health evaluation framework 
Victor J Del Rio Vias A path to surveillance evaluation
Carmenza Robledo Evaluating from local impact to global change… can we do that?
Alexandra Lux Accompanying and assessing transdisciplinary research  
Janina Schirmer Quality Assessment of transdisciplinary Research between external Constraints and internal Possibilities  

University of Malta, Valletta, Malta
16-17thth January 2017

Hands up in lecture theatre

In the morning of the 16th of January, the management committee met to discuss the progress of the Action and to plan the next activities and the budget.

At lunch, other NEOH members joined for the plenary session, which was opened with warm welcoming words from Prof Sandra Buttigieg, local organiser and management committee member for Malta and Head of Department of Health Services Management, Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Malta. The Hon Christopher Fearne, Minister of Health for Malta then formally opened the meeting. He pointed out that since Malta currently has the presidency of the European Council, he has the privilege of also being president of the European Health Council. This presidency provides an opportunity to inform the health agenda in the short and long term. The Hon Christopher Fearne pointed out three health priorities: 1) Obesity, 2) European reference networks, and 3) Exchange system for post graduate medical training across Europe.

The next speaker was Prof Sandra Buttigieg who talked about the benefits of a One Health approach using case studies as examples, where the complexity of the cases required transdisciplinarity and interdisciplinarity. Afterwards, the audience was welcomed by Angela Xuereb Anastasi, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences. She gave a brief overview of the Faculty and its research interests. The Faculty aims to improve partnerships with international universities and is keen to pursue more interdisciplinary research. Congratulations were expressed to NEOH members, particularly those from Malta who are promoting involvement of Maltese researchers in the network. Finally, Barbara Haesler, the NEOH chair, also welcomed everyone and thanked the conference organisers, particularly Sandra Buttigieg for their great support. She described NEOH as a dynamic network – coming up with new ideas and trying things out, whilst growing through interacting with more and more people from different backgrounds and bringing people together.

Following the introduction two keynote speakers talked about the potential of using One Health as an approach to addressing European public health priorities and the understanding and developing of information infrastructure.

1) Dr Natasha Azzopardi Muscat – President of European Public Health Association (EUPHA) in her talk One Health: an approach to address European public health priorities provided a short summary of the EUPHA highlighting its over 20-year history in promoting multidisciplinary working, professional exchange and collaboration between its members and beyond. The EUPHA has become a leading voice in public health. The One Health approach was recognised as providing a paradigm for mounting an effective PH response and in that light, the EUPHA expressed a willingness to work with veterinarians and people from other disciplines.

2) Prof Ole Hanseth, Professor in the Research Group for Information Systems at University of Oslo, in his talk Information Infrastructures and Infrastructure Studies showed about how information infrastructures and how infrastructure studies could assist in sharing of data between different sectors. The presentation demonstrated the network effects of a self-reinforcing installed base (e.g. iPhone/ Android platform) where the mechanism drives the large scale development, and the implications and side-effects thereof (e.g. dependency, competition tipping point, lock-in etc.). Strategies were presented of how to start when there is no base.

The next session focused on evaluation of One Health. The first speaker was Catherine Machalaba, from the Ecohealth Alliance – PREDICT, who had worked with other NEOH members on One Health governance. She pointed out that there is now increasing support for One Health, e.g. UN Convention on Biological Diversity: (2014, 2016), the FAO-OIE-WHO tripartite agreement, the UN Ggeneral Assembly’s approach to AMR and the Global Health Security Agenda. She then talked about the PREDICT project and One Health indicators in PREDICT.

Dr Sara Savic, management committee member for Serbia, then outlined the WG2 activities over the last year. Highlights included the Training School in Novi Sad, seven completed short term scientific missions by WG2 members, 9 completed case study evaluations and 3 case study evaluations in progress. She also explained next steps and planned activities, with the view of publication of the case studies in the NEOH special issue in Frontiers. Her presentation provided the backdrop for the evening session with presentations by case study leaders. Each case study leader provided an explanation of the rationale for the case study, the background, evaluation question, methodology used, results obtained and an interpretation/discussion (presentations are accessible on Alfresco for NEOH members). Following the presentations, a discussion took place on the evaluation questions and the NEOH protocols including the evaluation process, how to assess One Health in terms of outcomes, what to change in the methodology, and how to simplify something that becomes increasingly complex the deeper you go.

The day was rounded off with participants taking a bus for a networking dinner at the beautiful Verdala Palace situated in surrounding woodland. Built originally in 1555 as a hunting lodge it was expanded into a palace in 1586 but has also been used over the centuries as a military prison and a silk factory falling into disrepair in the early 1800’s. It was fully restored in the 1850’s and served as the official summer residence of the then British governors and the now President of Malta. It boasts an ornate interior with several frescoed walls and ceilings.

 

P1040434 (1)-min IMG_0070

On the 2nd day, Daniele de Meneghi and Sara Savic gave a presentation on the initial findings from the NEOH and EURNEGVEC international survey to explore the collaboration between human, animal and environmental health sectors.

Following that, Asta Tvarijonaviciute chaired a session on “Obesity and One Health”. Dr Charmaine Gauci spoke first about obesity in Malta with reference to behaviours in families and links between obese family members and obese pet ownership. She also introduced the TRIO Programme which aims to improve health status of the EU population with a focus on NCDs, co-operation between health systems, communicable diseases and data sharing. Dr Jorge Pinto Ferreira followed this, presenting “Obesity policies: can they benefit from an OH approach?” and talked about this experiences with the non-profit organisation – CAOVIDA (The One Health Club), which provides assistance to families with overweight children; bringing together dogs and children to create a community through monthly activities and offering parental support. Dr Daniel Cauchi spoke third on the Implications of obesogenic environment in Malta (download part 1 and part 2) – a case for adopting One Health strategy and talked about his cross-sectional study on an environmental audit of what influences obesity in Malta and the environmental barriers. Finally, Dr Alberto Muñoz and Dr Asta Tvarijonaviciute presented their NEOH case study on Obesity and One Health. Francesca Contadini talked about the OH-SMART tool which is a practical tool developed by USDA and University of Minnesota to visualize, analyse and identify breakpoints and communication gaps in a network of organisations.

After the presentations, there were break-out sessions used by NEOH members to

  • Collect feedback on the handbook chapters: Overall, the conclusion was that the chapters were appreciated, welcomed and found useful, but that they need considerable improvement. Detailed comments were collected for each chapter which will be shared with the handbook leaders.
  • Reflect on progress to date: WG2 leader reminded members that the case study evaluations and manuscripts for publication need to be finished in June 2017. She underlined the need to evaluate the outcomes of the case studies as soon as possible.
  • Elaborate on a plan for the meta-study (WG3): The group came up with a five step plan: i) to develop a typology and motivation for OH Initiatives in order to classify the OHI for the global analysis, ii) to select additional, well informed case studies in each category, iii) use multivariate/multicomponent analysis, iv) develop a simplified version of the methodology to assess OHness of additional case studies and v) to look at how OHness varies among OH categories. A date and location for a dedicated meeting was agreed.
  • Plan dissemination and engagement activities: WG4 members discussed dissemination plans for the handbook, target audience for the final Action conference, a NEOH leaflet and a NEOH video.

Following a final plenary session with discussion on the break out groups, the event came to an end with closing words by the chair who summarised decisions made and outlined the next steps.

Download Programme

 


Brussels

Small group of people sitting in a circle Man explains to group who are standing beside giant post-it notes on wall Group stand beside note sheet which says "Students, Stakeholders - who can take active part in system. Everyone - Evaluation of 'promise' of OH, Implementors - are we using right tools & implementing to fulfill promise from action.

European One Health / EcoHealth Workshop
Belspo, Brussels, 6th-7th October 2016

Download Report here

NEOH was a co-organiser of the European One Health / EcoHealth Workshop, which took place in Brussels on the 6th and 7th of October 2016. The purpose of this workshop was to explore One Health in practice and to build bridges between different interdisciplinary communities in science, policy and practice by exchanging experiences and views, and discuss opportunities and challenges for integration and practice. The workshop helped to clarify some conceptual definitions/overlaps/specificities of One Health, EcoHealth, Planetary health, Global health, Biodiversity & Health, and related concepts and allowed building connections between concerned participants working on related issues. The workshop had a strong focus on the challenges faced in practice and participants had the opportunity for close exchange and discussion in multiple small break-out groups that were structured around specific topics.

Before the workshop, a survey on the different integrated health concepts was circulated in various communities and the outputs from the survey were used to guide some of the discussions.

The format was a combination of plenary keynotes and parallel interactive topical sessions and posters in order to allow for enough diversity of topical foci and contributions, as well as interactions.

The workshop programme can be found here: http://www.biodiversity.be/health/58.

The abstract book can be downloaded here:  http://www.biodiversity.be/health/134

The official workshop pictures can be found here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/133832076@N07/albums/72157673776252522/page3/

NEOH was an active collaborator in the workshop and provided re-imbursement for 15 NEOH participants for this workshop. They participating NEOH members gave active input into various working groups, acted as rapporteurs and facilitators and gave both oral and poster presentations.

NEOH also coordinated the session “Experiences on One Health practice and integration challenges”, which constituted an ideal platform to discuss first insights from the development of the handbook as well as preliminary results from the case studies.

The following presentations were given:

Name Title (click on title to download PDF of presentation)
Dr Alain Vandersmissen,
European External Action Service
Historical developments of the One Health Movement since 2005 – Drivers, Opportunities and Challenges
Dr Abbas OmarChatham House, UK An overview and evaluation of the Infectious Disease Risk Assessment and Management (IDRAM) project
Dr Simon Rüegg and Dr Sara SavicUniversity of Zürich A blueprint for One Health Evaluation & Preliminary results from a set of case studies evaluating One Health; NEOH evaluation framework, evaluating One Healthness
Barry McMahon The role of biodiversity in the ecology of zoonotic disease transmission
 Tracey Dutcher Strengthening Cross-Sector Emergency Preparedness and Response Using the One Health Systems Mapping and Analysis Resource Toolkit (OH-SMART)

 

After the presentations and some general discussion, participants met in smaller groups to discuss the following questions:

What are the key limitations to evaluation of One Health/similar concepts?;After the presentations and some general discussion, participants met in smaller groups to discuss the following questions:

  1. Who would benefit most from evaluations of One Health/similar concepts and why?;
  2. What activities/steps are needed to create One Health/Ecohealth evaluation capacity?; and
  3. Which form of expertise (scientific and other) do you not have collaborative experience with yet and would consider useful and why?

The rapporteurs then presented some key take home messages to the plenary. The report for this session on Experiences on One Health practice and integration challenges can be downloaded here.

The overall workshop report will be made available shortly.


 

NEOH workshop on evaluation of data and information sharing in One Health initiatives
Faculty of Health and Medical Science, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
20th and 21st April 2016

Attendees at copenhagen workshop

The NEOH consortium met in Copenhagen for a workshop that aimed to contribute to the framework and protocol for evaluation of One Health initiatives by providing:

  • an overview of existing knowledge and methods on opportunities and challenges in data and information use, sharing, and examples of systems in which sharing is already underway
  • an introduction to evaluation methods for data and information sharing mechanisms
  • a discussion forum on how to further develop evaluation methods on data and information sharing methods and mechanisms in One Health research, governance and surveillance settings including quantitative measures describing barriers and accessibility of data within a community.

A fantastic group of speakers experienced in data exchange activities and evaluation kindly shared their expertise with a group of  nearly 40 NEOH members. Hans Houe, building on long-standing experience in using  data from many different sources (laboratory, clinics, registers etc.), talked about the difficulties arising when using primary and secondary data from databases and what attributes and activities to consider to ensure data quality. Birgitte Borck Høg, an expert in zoonosis surveillance, provided interesting insights into the One Health data exchange and sharing mechanisms at national and international levels related to the DANMAP programme. Leonardo V. de Knegt used his first-hand experience as an active member of the study group on the use of Vetstat data for research, to explore in great detail what features need to be considered to make databases sharable, interpretable and relevant. James Thomas, the director of the USAID funded MEASURE evaluation project, shared insightful stories from MEASURE evaluation including challenges faced in the field and evaluation of complex problems and networks. Maria Vang Johansen, Professor in Parasitic Zoonoses, impressed the audience with the presentation of the “ The Vicious Worm”, an electronic health education tool implemented and assessed in Tanzania. Finally, the One Health epidemiologist Marie McIntyre, introduced her ENHanCEd Infectious Diseases (EID2) database and discussed the difficulties accruing from big data merging and sharing.

The new knowledge was used by participants to discuss the relevance of information sharing and learning and to make further progress with the NEOH handbook. The workshop participants expressed their gratitude for this workshop and emphasised that they learned a lot about the practical challenges related to setting up data and information sharing platforms and exchange networks and how these could be evaluated.

Download programme here

Name Title (click on title to download PDF of presentation)
Barbara Häsler, Grant holder, Royal Veterinary College, London, UK Characteristics of One Health defined by NEOH
Hans Houe, Department of Large Animal Sciences, University of Copenhagen Challenges and opportunities in using primary and secondary data from databases
Birgitte Borck Høg, National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark Methods and challenges in data and information sharing in the Danish Integrated Surveillance for Antimicrobials and Antimicrobial Resistance system (DANMAP)
Leonardo de Knegt,National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark Improving institutional memory on the use of data from VetSTAT for estimating antimicrobial exposure risks
James Thomas, Director,MEASURE evaluation project, Carolina Population Center, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, Chapel Hill, NC, USA Evaluation of learning outcome in Tanzania when using an online learning platform (‘The Vicious Worm’) created for information sharing and learning about cysticercosis in developing countries
K. Marie McIntyre, University of Liverpool, UK Prepare, Predict, Prevent: Creating Objectivity in Infectious Disease Risk Assessment using Big Data Approaches
Maria Vang Johansen, Department of Disease Biology, University of Copenhagen, DK Evaluation of learning outcome in Tanzania when using an online learning platform (‘The Vicious Worm’) created for information sharing and learning about cysticercosis in developing countries

“For any citations, please note that this workshop was organised as part of the work from COST Action TD1404, Network for Evaluation of One Health (NEOH) supported by COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology)”


NEOH stakeholder workshop
COST office, Brussels, 16th February 2016

Download report here

Delegates post in front of screen  Delegates during brussels meeting

This workshop brought together NEOH consortium members and stakeholders from international institutions with an interest in One Health initiatives and evaluation of One Health or other interdisciplinary health endeavours, with the aim of introducing NEOH to key stakeholders and eliciting stakeholder opinion on the anticipated outcomes of the NEOH COST Action.

Download programme for Brussels here

There were over 38 meeting participants with representatives from 14 stakeholder institutions (download list of participants here). The meeting kicked off with an introduction to NEOH provided by Barbara Häsler followed by a fascinating presentation on European One Heath policy given by Laszlo Kuster of the European Commission (DG Santé). The leaders of Working Groups 1 and 2 then reported on the activities of their respective working groups.

Stakeholder presentations were given by representatives from the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, the Nordic Council, European Public Health Association, the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe, the World Health Organisation and Southeast European Center for Surveillance and Control of Infectious Diseases. It was inspirational to hear how a One Health perspective was being incorporated into the activities of these stakeholder organisations and opportunities for synergy between stakeholders and the NEOH consortium were identified. In the final part of the meeting small group discussions took place to identify stakeholder needs related to One Health evaluation for decision making. Overall the meeting was very successful and enabled links to be forged between NEOH and a variety of stakeholders.

Download the presentations here:

Name Title (click on title to download PDF of presentation)
Laszlo Kuster, Unit Animal health and welfare, DG Health and Food Safety (SANTE), European Commission One Health
Dr Chantal Britt, Communications and Publications Manager, European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases The European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases’ perspective on One Health
Prof Peter Panduro Damborg, Scientific Secretary of VetCAST An introduction to the ESGVM study group and the EUCAST subcommittee VetCAST
Dr Jenny Pentler, Nordic Council How the Nordic Council supports One Health
Dr Natasha Azzopardi Muscat, European Public Health Association The European Public Health Association’s vision and strategy for public health in Europe and the One Health concept: Potential for synergy and collaboration
Dr Arne Skjoldager, Federation of Veterinarians of Europe Federation of Veterinarians of Europe activities on One Health
Dr John Berezowski, Veterinary Public Health Institute, Bern, Switzerland International Society for Disease Surveillance One Health Surveillance Working group
Dr Hilde Kruse, World Health Organisation One Health – a WHO perspective
Dr Jonilda Sulo, Southeast European Center for Surveillance and Control of Infectious Diseases The road of the Southeast European Center for Surveillance and Control of Infectious Diseases towards One Health and associated challenges
Dr Barbara Häsler, Royal Veterinary College, UK Introduction to the Network for Evaluation of One Health
Dr Simon Ruegg, University of Zurich, Switzerland NEOH Working Group 1 – The evaluation framework
Dr Sara Savic, Scientific Veterinary Institute, Novi Sad, Serbia NEOH Working Group 2 – Application of evaluation protocol to case studies

 

 

“For any citations, please note that this workshop was organised as part of the work from COST Action TD1404, Network for Evaluation of One Health (NEOH) supported by COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology)”

 


Management Committee meeting and NEOH workshop
NOVA Medical School, Lisbon, 18th and 19th January 2016

Delegates sit in beautiful ornate hall

Download Lisbon programme here 

The meeting was a great success with 70 participants from 22 European countries attending to discuss the progress of the work and plan further directions.

The morning of the first day was dedicated to the MC meeting and in the afternoon all participants gathered in the prestigious Great Hall of the Medical School and listened to an enthusiastic description of the meaning of the wall paintings. The plenary session started with warm words of welcome by the director of the Medical School (Prof. Jaime Branco), the chair of NEOH (Dr Barbara Häsler) and the local organiser (Prof. Jorge Torgal) followed by presentations by eminent invited speakers (Professor Carla Lopes, University of Oporto; Professor Asa Melhus, University of Uppsala; Professor Bjorn Olsen, University of Uppsala; Professor Luís Sambo, University Nova of Lisbon) who reflected on One Health perspectives and discussed different challenges and potential benefits of “One Health”. The rest of the afternoon was dedicated to updates by members on the “Evaluation of One Health” framework, protocol and handbook – the main activities of Work Group 1. A social event in the evening of the first day took place in a local restaurant and was enjoyed by all.

The second day participants split into four groups to further discuss the questions and potential applications in relation to the different book chapters and also discuss the different One Health initiatives that are going to be used to apply, test and refine the evaluation guidelines developed. Finally, next steps were agreed in a plenary session and the meeting concluded with closing words by the chair.