One Health Workshop: Conservation of Aquatic Ecosystems

Event Date(s): 24/06/2014 - 25/06/2014

Location: Amphitheatre B, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex.

The School of Veterinary Medicine, Faculty of Medical Sciences (FMS) hosts “One Health Workshop: Conservation of Aquatic Ecosystems”, from June 24-25, 2014, 7.45am-5pm daily, at Amphitheatre B, FMS, Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex.

This Caribbean One Health Workshop aims to sensitise participants to the intricate and complex interconnections that exist in Caribbean Aquatic Ecosystems and highlight the multifaceted nature of the ‘health’ of such systems, thereby allowing for the development of effective intervention strategies and strengthened regional conservation efforts. 

Key speakers at the workshop are:

- Dr Ilze K. Berzins, Director-One World, One Water, One Health, LLC and Chief Clinician- Fins, Claws and Paws Veterinary Care Services, LLC, Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul Area, Minnesota, USA.

- Dr Cindy P. Driscoll, State Wildlife Veterinarian, Director- Fish & Wildlife Health Program, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Cooperative Oxford Laboratory, Oxford, Maryland, USA. 

Registration is US$100.

The event is open to staff, students, alumni, the general public, and all who play potential key roles in One Health locally and regionally, including participants from medical, veterinary, environmental conservation, zoo and wildlife industries, media, disaster preparedness, government ministries, regulatory and research institutions, oil and gas industries and others.  

Contact: 645-2640 ext 4343 or 4385 | vetsch@sta.uwi.edu | Carla.Phillips@sta.uwi.edu - Lecturer- Marine Mammal Medicine/Aquatic Animal Health

More on the workshop  

This is the first of a series of annual workshops held at the FMS, informing participants of the many areas in which a One Health focus is the best approach to problem solving. It will be regional in the scope of participants and will focus on the many interrelationships between the health of the human population, the health of the animal population and the environment that we all share. This first, highly interactive workshop will focus on the use of One Health principles in targeting Aquatic Ecosystem Health and Management. Participants will be challenged to identify human/animal/environmental and related challenges experienced in aquatic ecosystems throughout the Caribbean region and given a template as to how to address those and future issues using a One Health approach. 

More on the One Health concept


The Caribbean is home to a vast array of vibrant coral reefs, pristine beaches, ecologically rich swamp land, marine fisheries, mangrove habitats and protected rain forests which sustain hundreds of unique plant and animal species. It is this biodiversity that sustains the livelihood ofthousands of fisher folk throughout the region, draws tens of thousands of visitors to our shores annually, and supports the economies of the Caribbean islands. Human activities severely threaten these Caribbean treasures. 


Caribbean aquatic ecosystems house an enviable collection of sea, shore and swamp birds, colourful reef and ornamental fishes, endangered megavertebrates including whales, dolphins, manatees, sea turtles, sharks, whale sharks and rays, as well as snakes, neotropical river otters and many others. Poor health of the animals in these ecosystems is a warning of impending threats to human health. Environmental, animal and human health are therefore intricately linked. 


Fisher folk, tourists and islanders in general Caribbean-wide, all depend on the health and sustainability of aquatic ecosystems for food, income and leisure. Poor environmental health and/or loss of biodiversity, for any reason, results in a series of ill effects on all who depend ona given ecosystem. Intervention and prevention of health problems in any of the three sectors, positively changes the overall outcome. This is the basis for One Health Conservation. 


Open to: | General Public | Staff | Student | Alumni |