ILRI and WHO agree to work together more closely for better human health

ILRI and WHO sign a memorandum of understanding to promote human health and the control of zoonotic diseases.

In September 2005, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) and the World Health Organization (WHO). The agreement was signed by executives from both organizations in recognition of the need to better understand the links between livestock keeping and the health and general well-being of poor people in poor countries.

This agreement makes possible more effective collaboration and coordination between ILRI and WHO on human health and the control of diseases transmitted between animals and people (zoonoses) and associated with livestock and livestock products.

The agreement facilitates collective action on issues of concern to both organizations. WHO is involved in the surveillance and response to health problems of its member countries while ILRI obtains evidence on the impact of zoonotic diseases on the health and livelihood of poor people.

“We want to make sure that our research activities are integrated with the surveillance and control needs at the international level. Otherwise, why do research if there is no demand for it?", says Dr. Lee Willingham, a research scientist on parasitic zoonoses at ILRI.

The general objective of this agreement is to maximize synergies in the work of the two organizations in the following areas.

  1. Exchange of information on technical areas of common interest to achieve complementarity and coordination between relevant activities and programmes.
  2. Development of joint activities to address issues of mutual interest that are designed to foster and promote  a greater capacity for research and technology application in developing countries and to facilitate the building and consolidation of global partnerships in the scientific community. The joint projects will be supported through special supplemental project proposals and may involve secondment of staff from one organization to the other or other appropriate administrative arrangements.
  3. Promotion of synergies and elaboration of collaborative programs in areas where the two organizations can best employ their comparative advantages.

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