The beginning of the 21st Century has been characterised by changed political and economic realities affecting the prevention, control and eradication of animal diseases and zoonoses and presenting new challenges to the veterinary profession. Veterinary Services (VS) need to have the capacity and capabilities to face these challenges and be able to detect, prevent, control and eradicate disease threats. Animal health and VS, being a public good, require global initiatives and collective international action to be able to implement global animal disease eradication. The application of the ‘One World, One Health’ strategy at the animal-human interface will strengthen veterinary capacity to meet this challenge. Good governance of VS at the national, regional and global level is at the heart of such a strategy. In this paper, the author lists the key elements comprising good veterinary governance and discusses the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) standards for the quality of VS. The OIE Tool for the Evaluation of the Performance of Veterinary Services (OIE PVS Tool) is introduced and its relevance in assessing compliance with OIE standards to prevent the spread of pathogens through trade is highlighted. A firm political commitment at the national, regional and international level, with provision of the necessary funding at all levels, is an absolute necessity in establishing good governance of VS to meet the ever-increasing threats posed by animal and human pathogens.
Emerging and re-emerging infectious animal diseases – Global public good – Good veterinary governance – International standard – OIE PVS Tool – One World, One Health strategy – Veterinary governance – Veterinary Services.