The veterinary sciences are relevant to more than just animal health. They also play an important role in maintenance of the health of human populations.
West Nile Virus
These zoonotic and foodborne diseases are an important public health concern because they cause significant sickness and death in the US and worldwide.
Even in Ohio, over 48% of human diseases reportable to the Ohio Department of Health are considered zoonoses and dangerous to the public. Furthermore, other zoonotic infectious diseases such as respiratory coronavirus (SARS) and avian influenza (bird flu) are continually emerging and thus present new challenges for public health professionals.
Because animals (pets, livestock, and wildlife) are the major source for the pathogens involved in zoonoses and foodborne illnesses, professionals trained in veterinary sciences are often the most qualified individuals to deal with these public health issues.
However, in order to understand the interaction of human and animal health, public health practitioners must have knowledge and training on the epidemiology and ecology of zoonotic and foodborne diseases. Therefore, The Ohio State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and College of Public Health have come together to create the Veterinary Public Health specialization (VPH) as an option within the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree program in order to address that need.
Completion of the MPH degree with a specialization in Veterinary Public Health will also help pre-professional students who plan to pursue a DVM or other professional degree by providing a broader background and expanded knowledge base in the health sciences prior to entering the DVM, MD or nursing programs.