North Dakota State Agencies Promote Health Day
November 3 marks the sixth annual One Health Day, a global day of action to promote awareness of the relationship between human, animal and ecosystem health. The North Dakota Department of Agriculture (NDDA), North Dakota Game and Fish Department (NDGF), North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality (NDDEQ), and North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) encourage the public to recognize the interconnection of people, animals, plants and the environment they share.
“A Health Day is an opportunity to provide education and raise awareness of the health risks facing humans and animals while emphasizing the importance of disease prevention efforts,” said Laura Cronquist, epidemiologist at NDDoH.
NDDA, NDGF, NDDEQ, and NDDoH recommend the following tips to keep you, your family, and your pets healthy:
- Practice good hand hygiene. Washing your hands is one of the best ways to stay healthy and prevent the spread of germs. Always wash your hands with soap and clean running water after coming into contact with animals, their food and their environment.
- Keep your pets healthy. Make sure your pets get good nutrition, fresh water, shelter, and exercise. Regular veterinary care, including vaccination, is also important for animals.
- Reduce the risk of exposure to rabies by making sure your pets are up to date with their rabies vaccinations. Keep stray animals and wildlife, especially skunks, away from pets and livestock. Always enjoy the wildlife from a distance.
- Watch for blue-green algae blooms in water bodies used by humans, pets, and livestock during summer and early fall. Avoid contact with an efflorescence and report the location to NDDEQ.
- Always use antibiotics as directed by your healthcare provider or veterinarian. Antibiotics save lives, but any time they are used in humans, animals or the environment, they can lead to antibiotic resistance.
- If you work with or around farm animals, have a set of dedicated shoes, gloves, coveralls, or other work clothing that you will only use when working in animal areas. Remove them as soon as possible after leaving animal areas.
- Avoid harvesting wildlife that appear injured or unhealthy, and wear rubber or latex gloves when priming game in the field.
- Stay home if you feel sick to avoid spreading germs to others.
To learn more about One Health Day, please contact NDDoH’s Disease Control Division at 701.328.2378, NDDA Animal Health Division at 701.328.2655, NDDEQ at 701.328.5150, or NDGF at 701.328.6300 .