SEAMEO Secretariat SEAMEO Secretariat

The Significance of One Health

The concept of One Health recognizes the intricate relationship between human health, animal health, and the environment. Initiated in 2004, One Health emphasizes the interdependence of these 3 domains and aims to address health challenges through collaborative efforts. By understanding the connection between humans, animals, and the environment, we can promote preventive measures and behaviors that mitigate the risk of zoonotic disease.

Alignment with Health Literacy and Sustainable Development Goals

One Health education is closely aligned with health literacy, which is a priority area within the Science Cluster of SEAMEO Regional Centres and the SEAMEO Education Agenda. By incorporating One Health principles into the curriculum, students can develop a comprehensive understanding of health and make informed decisions in their lives. Furthermore, the One Health concept contributes to several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDGs 3,4, 6, 12, 14, 15, and 17, which emphasize good health and well-being, quality education, clean water and sanitation, responsible consumption, and strong partnerships.

Promoting One Health Education in Schools

One Health education should extend beyond professionals in human, animal, and environmental health. Recognizing that children often have close associations with animals, it is essential to introduce One Health education in the school setting to prevent zoonotic diseases. Schools play a vital role in fostering positive attitudes and behaviors that can influence students’ decision-making abilities throughout their lives. Additionally, students can bring their knowledge of One Health concepts back to their homes and communities, creating a ripple effect of awareness and action.

SEAMEO TROPMED Network’s Pilot Projects

To promote One Health education in schools, the SEAMEO TROPMED Network, in collaboration with partners such as CHEVRON, SEAOHUN, TDRC, and SEAMEO STEM-ED, initiated a 2-year pilot project. Rujiraphat School in Suan Phueng, Ratchaburi province, Thailand, was selected as the pilot school for this endeavor. The project aims to introduce One Health and related concepts into the curriculum through mainstreaming and co-curricular activities.

Implementing the Curriculum

Various activities were undertaken to integrate One Health into the curriculum:

  1. Training of all teachers at Rujiraphat Schools on One Health concepts to enhance their understanding and knowledge.
  2. Development of 4 modules catering to different grade levels, covering topics such as Basic One Health concepts, Handwashing, Pets, Rabies, Malaria, and Soil-transmitted worms. The selection of topics was based on a situational analysis conducted during the project’s preparatory phase.
  3. Training of Science and Health teachers on the effective use of the modules.
  4. Observation of classroom implementation to ensure proper execution.
  5. Pre- and post-testing of students to assess their knowledge and understanding.
  6. Feedback workshops with teachers to gather experiences and lessons learned from integrating the curriculum. Positive feedback led to the training of teachers in other subjects to utilize the modules effectively.

Co-curricular Activities

In addition to curriculum integration, co-curricular activities were organized to provide practical health education opportunities:

Physical examination of students

Stool examination of students

Hemoglobin determination of students

Testing of water sources within the school compound and selected areas in the community

These activities served as valuable learning experiences for both students and teachers. Collaboration between the school and local health facilities and research centres was enhanced, strengthening the ties between the school and the community.


Conclusion: The promotion of One Health education in schools plays a crucial role in fostering a holistic understanding of health. By integrating One Health concepts into the curriculum and conducting co-curricular activities, students develop the knowledge and skill s necessary to prevent and respond to zoonotic diseases. The efforts of the SEAMEO TROPMED Network, along with its partners, demonstrate the commitment to advancing One Health education and building healthier communities through collaboration and awareness.