Zoonosis educational kit helps practitioners discuss potential risks of infection


Medical and veterinary professionals may find it difficult to access information on the risks of roundworm and hookworm zoonotic infections in people.

Medical and veterinary professionals may find it difficult to accessinformation on the risks of roundworm and hookworm zoonotic infections inpeople. As a result, these professionals, including family physicians, pediatricians,and veterinarians, often are reluctant to talk about the potential risksof zoonotic infections, which are diseases that can be passed from petsto people. In an effort to facilitate discussions on these potentially seriousinfections, Merial Limited has developed a Zoonosis Educational Kit ("ProtectingPets. Protecting People.") for veterinary technicians, veterinariansand clinic staffers. The Kit contains a CD-ROM, which features scientificguidelines from experts in the field of zoonotic diseases, educational charts,graphs, and a video. Also included is a study guide with self-test, anda zoonotic disease pocket reference. "Protecting Pets. Protecting People."offers veterinarians a tool through which they can discuss the causes ofzoonotic diseases with their clients and ways to help reduce the risk ofinfection, the company says. The Educational Kit is a part of a major effortby Merial to help educate the veterinary community about zoonotic diseasesand how to speak about the diseases with their clients so that they cantake measures to help prevent infections. "The Zoonosis EducationalKit is a valuable tool for the veterinary community because it can helpfacilitate a dialogue between practitioner and pet owner about zoonoticdiseases and ways to prevent zoonotic infections," says Peter Schantz,VMD, Ph.D., at The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta."The Zoonosis Educational Kit offers ways to initiate roundworm andhookworm discussions with clients, utilizing guidelines from experts, educationalcharts, graphs, and videos," says Doug Carithers, DVM, EVP, seniordirector of Veterinary Professional Services at Merial. "Any one ofthese tools will help veterinarians and their staff knowledgeably discusswhat is often an uncomfortable topic." The other topics discussed onthe CD-ROM are the roles the veterinary team plays, zoonotic diseases froma human health perspective, the prevalence of zoonotic parasites, zoonoticdiseases and the environment, legal and medical updates on zoonotic diseases,as well as client education, advice and instruction.

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