Vector-borne diseases in humans and animals: activities of the Swiss Tropical Institute and risks for Switzerland.

Research paper by J J Zinsstag, E E Schelling

Indexed on: 17 Jan '04Published on: 17 Jan '04Published in: Schweizer Archiv fur Tierheilkunde


The recent outbreak of anaplasmosis in a Swiss cattle herd triggered a discussion of the risk of vector-borne diseases in animals and humans in relation to climate changes and other factors. This overview presents the Swiss Tropical Institute's (STI) activities on vector-borne diseases (malaria, trypanosomosis, and leishmaniosis in humans and tick-borne diseases in livestock), describes the possible risks for humans and animals in Switzerland, and discusses options for action in the domains of public health, livestock production and companion animals. Switzerland is increasingly confronted with vector-borne diseases in humans and animals, but this is mainly due to an increase in imported cases. The emergence of a disease in one sector (human or veterinary medicine) may predict future trends in the other. A stronger intersectoral collaboration between public health and veterinary institutions at the federal and cantonal level is needed.