Somalia One Health Centre

One Health concepts and practices in Somalia

Dr. Ahmed A H. Kadle’s talk was presented at CMHS2023, Mogadishu, Somalia, on 19 March 2023.

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Short Biography

Dr. Kadle is a veterinarian with ten years of expertise in scientific research on the One Health perspective, higher education, humanitarian work, and entrepreneurship. He is currently the Rector and Associate Professor of Epidemiology at Abrar University, Somalia, and a lead contributor to the establishment of the Somali One Health Centre, the dairy industry, and the Somali Gastroenterology Clinic in Somalia. He holds a Postdoctorate and PhD in One Health from the Federal University of Parana, Brazil, and a BVSc and MSc in Veterinary Medicine from the University of Bahri, Sudan. In 2022, he was elected as an African Academy of Sciences Affiliate for his scientific and leadership contributions to One Health and higher education. Dr. Kadle is the principal investigator and co-PI of several major research projects within the area of Vector and Vector-Borne Diseases under a One Health aspect, as well as higher education research in fragile and conflict-affected settings to improve the health of people, animals, and the environment, enhance economic development, contribute to food security, and ensure quality education for all in the Horn of Africa, which all contribute to the UN sustainable development goals and Africa’s Agenda 2063.


Ahmed A. Hassan-Kadle1,2

1 Somali One Health Centre, Abrar University, Somalia
2 Abrar Research and Training Centre, Abrar University, Somalia

Somali people’s livelihoods are broadly based on livestock, agriculture, marine resources, and their shared environment; thus, the One Health concept is very relevant to the Somali context. The term “One Health” was first introduced into the global scientific community in 2003–2004 and in Somalia in 2013. It is now 10 years old in Somalia and has a long road ahead to achieve better health outcomes for people, animals, plants, and the environment. However, the concept is not new and can be traced back to the Prophet Adam’s era, when the crow shows Qabil how to bury the corpse of his brother, Habil, and thereby protects human, animal, plant, and environmental health from dead bodies (Surat Al-Maidah verse 31). In Somalia, several One Health practices are being implemented, focusing mainly on research, capacity development, and community interventions integrating medical, veterinary, environmental, and other relevant disciplines and sectors. In addition, the Somali One Health Centre of Abrar University, established in 2020, held an international conference in 2022, laying the foundation for the operationalization and institutionalization of One Health action in Somalia. Effective prevention, detection, and response to recently prioritized zoonotic diseases and other zoonotic diseases of greater concern for Somalia require multisectoral coordination, collaboration, communication, capacity building, and joint research. The One Health concept is still at an early stage in Somalia, with particular attention being paid to zoonotic diseases, antimicrobial resistance, mental health, environmental negative impacts, food and feed insecurity, and concept institutionalization. Somalia is grossly underrepresented in the global and African One Health networks and initiatives but is represented in the One Health regional network for the Horn of Africa that has recently been formed. Practicing the One Health concept in Somalia requires that policymakers and health and environment-related professionals work together to institutionalize One Health in the government system and engage the community. It suggests governmental power in the implementation of One Health, budgets, and benefit distributions across sectors, and transforming policymakers’ and scientists’ reactive to proactive mindsets to effectively address health challenges and put biodiversity and ecosystem health, human health, and animal health at the forefront of development agendas. Using One Health as a framework is key to post-COVID-19 green economic recovery, reaching the African Union’s Agenda 2063, the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, and global health security.

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