Despite widespread recognition of the threat posed by emerging zoonotic diseases (EZDs) to human and animal health and the economy, the root causes of EZDs are largely ignored by the international community. In particular, the links between wildlife health, human-induced land-use change, and EZDs have not been adequately addressed. Generally, states are not required to evaluate the health impacts of land-use decisions within their territories. Similarly, global efforts to protect wild spaces are rarely identified as a health imperative. Where initiatives have been undertaken, they remain focused largely on detecting and controlling only those wildlife diseases that are known or suspected to be a threat to human and animal health or the economy. A critique of the existing international responses leaves no doubt that a preventative approach must be adopted to address human vulnerability to EZDs.
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