Botswana: A Healthy Discourse on Institutionalizing One Health

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On many fronts, such as egalitarianism, Botswana is one healthy country. However, it lacks an official national One Health platform, a rare blot in a country that, nonetheless, has constantly implemented the One Health practice across government and private initiatives. To this end, between April 15 and 17, 2024, the Capacitating One Health in Eastern and Southern Africa (COHESA) team took to mapping out key stakeholders in Botswana, identifying those that will influence effective coordination of One Health in the country.

The de facto guiding document for One Health in Botswana is the Libreville Declaration on Health and Environment in Africa of 2008, which is implemented through the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Environment and Tourism.

In the absence of an official One Health office in the country, a multisectoral and multidisciplinary taskforce deals with emergencies and outbreaks. Technical Working Groups are formed, with their leadership dependent on the issues being tackled.

In the quest to promote One Health in Botswana, COHESA identified key line ministries responsible for Health, Environment and Tourism, Agriculture, Land and Water Affairs, and Ministry for State President, where the National Disaster Management Office, as influential towards coordination of One Health. Other key ministries including, Defense and Security, Local Transport, Trade and Industry, Transport and Public Works, And Minerals and Energy were also identified as key.

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