What is One Health Initiative?

Midwestern University Embraces One Health as a Core Component of Healthcare Education

On its two campuses in Downers Grove, Illinois, and Glendale, Arizona, Midwestern University educates more than 6,000 student healthcare providers enrolled in graduate and postgraduate studies. Broadening its longstanding dedication to interprofessional healthcare education, Midwestern launched the One Health Quality Initiative in 2014 to integrate One Health principles and practices within existing and new curricula, research, and service activities.

One Health is defined as the collaborative effort of multiple health science professions working locally, nationally, and globally to attain optimal health for people, domestic animals, wildlife, plants, and our environment. Midwestern University recognizes that human, animal and environmental health are intrinsically interconnected and essential to the well-being of all. Greater awareness of the relationship between individuals, species, and environments in research, teaching, and practice is an integral component of healthcare education, which aims to address both the diagnostic and therapeutic aspects of patient care.

One Health, then, is the lens through which interprofessional education and practice are viewed at Midwestern University. The ultimate purpose of the One Health Quality Initiative is to:

  • Reduce the cultural isolation of professional health disciplines
  • Increase shared resources to graduate health professionals capable of working together with the competence and experience to address the complex interrelatedness of species and their environments
  • Stimulate research collaborations
  • Enhance service to neighboring communities and society

Since 2014, One Health integration into education, research, and service endeavors has continued to accelerate. On the following pages are just a few examples of One Health in action at Midwestern University as faculty, staff, and students, continue to creatively embrace these principles in every facet of healthcare education.