WVA honours Japanese veterinarian with special “One Health” award

Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan leads the way in planning to avoid the next pandemic.
calendar icon 5 September 2023
clock icon 3 minute read

The President of the World Veterinary Association (WVA), Dr. Rafael Laguens today presented Dr. Kurauchi with an honorary prize to recognise his personal efforts and that of the Fukuoka Prefecture to bring real meaning to the concept of One Health.

WVA recently launched a new format of its Global Veterinary Awards, supported by Ceva Sante Animale (Ceva), extending their scope from animal welfare, to include it’s 3 other major strategic focus areas – One Health, Medicine Stewardship and Veterinary Education.

As the world emerges from the shadow of Covid-19, no one needs to be reminded about the value of preparing for the next pandemic. As a result, adopting a One Health approach has been endorsed by major governments such as G7 and international organisations, including WHO, WOAH, FAO, or UNEP, but in practice, there are still few strategies implemented in the different countries to undertake practical steps to create the organisational structures capable of working across human, animal and environmental health.

That’s why WVA considered the work of Dr. Kurauchi and Fukuoka to be such an important example of how to create a functioning One Health body capable of translating theory into practical, preventative health programmes.

Throughout his career both as a veterinarian and politician, Dr. Kurauchi has always believed in the importance of One Health, that human, animal and environmental health are interconnected and should be addressed together.

In 2012, the WVA and the World Medical Association signed a memorandum of understanding to promote One Health, prompting in 2013, the Japan Veterinary Medical Association (JVMA) and the Japan Medical Association to sign a similar agreement to promote One Health.

In 2016, JVMA had the honour of organizing and hosting the second WVA - WMA One Health Conference in Kyushu, resulting in the Fukuoka Memorandum, which commits members to take actions based on One Health principles. As the President of the Federation of Asian Veterinary Associations, Isao Kurauchi, has continued to work tirelessly to promote One Health and thoroughly deserves this global recognition.

Commenting on the Award, WVA President, Dr. Rafael Laguens said:

"Dr. Kurauchi has been an inspiring example in the practical application of the principles of One Health through the constant dialogue between physicians, veterinarians, environment professionals, policymakers and others, looking for the best of our society."

Dr. Iso Kurauchi.

"This award is a testament to the effectiveness of our One Health initiatives in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan, and across Asia. One Health is more than just a concept; it's a practical framework that has been integrated into concrete preventative health programs. This multidisciplinary approach extends beyond healthcare—it has the potential to revolutionize education, the automotive industry, semiconductors, and agriculture.

We are more committed than ever to strengthening collaborations across sectors. Our ultimate goal is to leave a healthier planet for the next generation and to prepare proactively for future pandemics.” declared Dr. Kurauchi.

For Ceva, President & CEO Dr. Marc Prikazsky said,

“We are delighted to support WVA as they continue to illustrate how our profession brings value to society. As a fellow veterinarian, I really admire the work Dr. Kurauchi has done to draw attention to the importance of One Health in his local prefecture, in Japan and now the whole of Asia.”

Laurence Williams

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