On January 20, 2015, USAID-RDMA sponsored a EPT-2 Launch Meeting in Bangkok, with participation from USAID-W, PREDICT-2, OHW, and partners such as WHO, the FAO regional office, and representatives from Thailand One Health University Network (THOHUN). Additional P&R meetings were held with Thailand’s new One Health Coordinating Unit at the Ministry of Public Health.

In March 2015, P&R staff met with the leadership and epidemiologists in the Ministry’s Bureau of Epidemiology to discuss challenges and gaps, as well as areas where P&R could provide technical assistance on One Health issues. And in April 2015, the Thai government sent several staff from human and animal health to attend the TEPHINET International Night/EIS Conference in Atlanta, and the P&R workshop in Washington DC following.

P&R engaged the Regional Senior Technical Advisor in September 2015. Dr. Pasakorn Akarasewi, a former director of the Bureau of Epidemiology, Ministry of Public Health Thailand, who will be overseeing the overall project implementation and progress of work in SEA, while taking a lead role in Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar.

During the last six months, P&R conducted a series of consultation meetings and interactions with representatives of key stakeholders and partners on One Health in the country. Immediate priority focus for the Project for Thailand would be: working with the One Health Coordinating Unit (OHCU) to strengthen the institutional capacity for policy dialogue among key ministers to renew MOU and further drafting the 2nd National Emerging Infectious Disease with comprehensive One Health Approach; technical support OHCU to increase information sharing among partners and between Animal and Human health sectors; discussion with key partners to identify collaboration plan to support Workforce Strategy (in line with GHSA) to strengthen wildlife rangers, veterinarian, and village health volunteers; and discussion with OHCU and Thailand One Health Steering committee to explore the interest and value for the Assessment or evaluation on National Capacity on Preparedness and Response to potential health threats. The Project will also explore with Thailand to co-host an ASEAN-wide Regional Forum on the Strengthening of NOHPs in the first quarter of 2016.

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