aerial view of UConn campus at sunset

One Health at UConn

The College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources is a university leader in adopting and promoting a One Health approach to our research, teaching, and extension mission areas. CAHNR is uniquely positioned to lead One Health initiatives because we incorporate the health disciplines, agriculture, plants, and the environment. An interdisciplinary team from across the nine departments in our College is working on One Health initiatives.

What is One Health?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention define One Health as, “a collaborative, multisectoral, and transdisciplinary approach—working at the local, regional, national, and global levels—with the goal of achieving optimal health outcomes recognizing the interconnection between people, animals, plants, and their shared environment”.

One Health encompasses ideas including zoonotic diseases, climate change, food security, and sustainable agriculture.

The Importance of One Health

The One Health approach, which acknowledges the connection between humans, animals, and the environment, has become increasingly important as the interactions between the components of on health have changed. For example:

  • As the human population increases, we have greater interactions with animals. This can be through humans inhabiting new locations, keeping animals as pets, or even through education and sport involving animals. This contact provides more of an opportunity for diseases to spread between humans and animals.
  • Climate change, deforestation, and disruptions in animals' environments provide an opportunity for diseases to pass to animals.
  • Movement of humans and animals internationally has increased allowing for diseases to spread more quickly.
  • More information on One Health can be found on the "One Health Basics" page.