Health of nomadic pastoralists : a "One Health" model

Wednesday 4 May 11.00

Room F

In English


Mobile pastoralists subsist primarily on herds of livestock such as camels, cattle, and goats, migrating seasonally to access water and grazing areas. Speculative estimates of their global population have ranged from 50-200 million, while others have suggested that the number of pastoralists in Africa alone may equal these figures. Pastoralists inhabit wide swaths of remote and ecologically harsh terrain in Asia, the Middle East, and North and Sub-Saharan Africa. Due to close contact with their herds, pastoralists have frequent exposure to animal reservoirs of pathogens with emerging epidemic potential with alarming implications for the ability to mount an effective epidemiologic response in regions where already-weak health infrastructure is crippled by protracted conflict and insecurity.

Considerable research has been devoted to integrated human and veterinary health interventions. Overall, One Health initiatives appear to be a promising approach with the potential to improve community acceptance, intervention coverage and cost efficacy. Nomadic pastoralists remain a high-risk blind spot in global health surveillance systems. As a platform for further dialogue, we present a series of contributions from recent field research to discuss a road map to address the gaps in health care for mobile pastoralists.


Jakob Zinsstag




Mahamat Bechir

Centre de Support en Santé Internationale


Food security among mobile pastoralists in Chad: A One Health issue

Valeria Cattaneo
GFA Consulting Group GmbH


Key influential factors impacting access to primary health care among nomadic communities in Kenya and Ethiopia

Yaxye Maydhane



The integrated surveillance-response system in pastoralist areas in the Somali Region of Ethiopia

Bolor Bold


The potential for integrated zoonoses control among pastoralists in Mongolia

Yaxye Maydhane



Health care for Tuareg communities in North Mali