The OIE considers disease surveillance in wild animals—including both terrestrial and aquatic species—to be important. In response to an increased risk of disease emergence at the human-animal-environment interface, the organisation developed a new OIE Wildlife Health Management Framework. The overall objective is to protect wildlife health worldwide to achieve One Health. This will involve a multi-sectoral approach to concentrate on the human-animal-ecosystem interface. This virtual meeting was therefore organised to share information on wildlife between OIE Members in South Asia, and to discuss future priority wildlife health activities in the sub-region.
36 participants joined the meeting. They represented 8 Members in South Asia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka.
Dr Kugita announced that the OIE Wildlife Health Survey Report and new OIE Wildlife Health Framework were recently published. After the brief introduction, Professor Anna Meredith, Head of Melbourne Veterinary School, gave a presentation on the importance of wildlife health. Dr Parag Nigam (Wildlife Institute of India) and Dr Oswin Perera (Sri Lanka Wildlife Health Centre) discussed topical issues on wildlife disease in the region, before an update from Professor Koichi Murata, a member of the OIE Working Group on Wildlife. Representatives from Members in the sub-region made a short presentation on wildlife activities. This led into the discussion session which focused on possible future activities relating to wildlife in South Asia, including both Veterinary Services and other sectors.