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The complexity of disease emergencies in a globalised world calls for the identification of effective strategies, based on both science and proven practical experience, to reduce future threats. The H5N1 avian influenza crisis has shown how crucial it is to address persistent global threats at the interface between humans, animals, and ecosystems. Moreover, it has shown how a concrete, transparent and consistent approach, based on high-quality scientific advice and practical experience, is vital for the management of these threats and for political credibility, both at the national and international level.
The OIE provides the advice needed by its Members to support them in preventing and managing serious animal disease outbreaks. For the last few years, it has consistently advocated that improving the governance of animal health systems, in both the public and private sector, is the most effective way to safeguard global animal health and human health when zoonoses occur. In areas related to the animal-human-ecosystem interface, collaboration and cooperation among the various sectors is critical to effective and efficient efforts and the OIE has been working along multiple different avenues to increase the guidance provided to Members on how to best work at the interface.