‘World War Z’ awareness fair to focus on zoonotic diseases

zoonotic_disease_fair_logo-fcBy Sally Crocker

Scientists have long recognized the connection of diseases spread between animals and people, through viruses, bacteria, parasites and fungi. This is so common, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), that an estimated 6 out of every 10 infectious diseases in humans are spread from animals.

On Nov. 9, 2016, UNTHSC public health students will host an informational “World War Z – Zoonotic Disease Awareness” fair to help educate students, faculty, staff, health professionals and the general public about this crucial global public health concern.

The free event will be held on the UNTHSC campus from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., featuring guest speakers, activities and entertainment, door prizes, food and refreshments.

UNTHSC Epidemiology alum Conner Carlsen, (MPH ’16), has been selected as keynote speaker for the event.

Ms. Carlsen, with Professor Katherine Fogelberg, DVM, PhD, and two other students, traveled to Uganda earlier this year to assist with international zoonotic disease testing and prevention efforts. Their work opened a new partnership with the international Veterinarians Without Borders organization, the University of Georgia, University of California-Davis and Makerere University-Uganda. Ms. Carlsen currently works for the Department of State Health Services Region 7 in Temple, Texas, as a vaccine preventable disease investigator.

Other Nov. 9 event speakers will include Dr. Joon Lee, on the topic of West Nile virus; Dr. Fogelberg, addressing neglected zoonotic diseases; Dr. Michael S. Allen, speaking on tick-borne diseases; Dr. Guy Dixon, discussing Zika Virus; and Dr. Maya Nair, on the subject of bioterrorism.

Students from the UNTHSC “Diseases from Animals to Humans” class are hosting the event.

For more information, contact: MGMTWWZ@GMAIL.COM.

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