Animals are the source of more than 70% of new, emerging, and re-emerging infectious illnesses. The COVID-19 pandemic exemplifies the enormous worldwide dangers that can arise when zoonotic illnesses spread to humans.
On 30 September 2020, USAID awarded the Strategies to Prevent Spillover (STOP Spillover) project to a Tufts University-led Consortium, which is a global consortium of experts in human, animal, and environmental health that will take the next step in recognizing and managing threats posed by recognized zoonotic viruses.
The STOP Spillover project provides a critical opportunity to enhance global understanding of the complex drivers of viral spillover and augment sustainable national capacities in risk analysis and mitigation, spillover intervention, and behavior change. This five-year project will strengthen the capacity of 10 countries in Africa and Asia (including Viet Nam) to:
- Monitor, analyze, and characterize the risk of priority zoonotic viruses spilling over from animals to people.
- Develop, test, and implement interventions and policies to reduce the risk of priority viral zoonotic spillover.
- Mitigate the amplification and spread of priority zoonotic viral diseases if spillover occurs.
The project will use a stakeholder-driven, multisectoral One Health approach to partner with high-risk communities and local stakeholders while adopting a management structure that will maximize efficiency and leverage expertise at all levels. Government engagement and partnerships are key to achieving STOP Spillover’s objectives and the sustainable reduction of country and community risk.
While STOP Spillover will focus on priority viral threats that continue to pose the greatest public health risk – including Ebola, Lassa, Marburg, Nipah, animal-origin coronaviruses, and animal-origin zoonotic influenza viruses – the capacities developed over the life of the project will help to ensure that partner countries are better prepared to prevent the spread of current and future zoonotic viruses.
In Viet Nam, the STOP Spillover project will be implemented under the management of Hanoi University of Public Health (HUPH) and the coordination of Vietnam One Health University Network (VOHUN) in four target areas, namely:
- Dong Nai Province
- Dong Thap Province
- Bac Giang Province
- Huong Son Complex, Hanoi
For more information about STOP Spillover, please visit www.STOPSpillover.org.