The UdeM professor receives one of the highest honours in medicine in recognition of her work promoting the One Health approach.
Université de Montréal epidemiologist Hélène Carabin is now a member of the prestigious U.S. National Academy of Medicine (NAM). The professor in the Department of Pathology and Microbiology at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine at the School of Public Health was elected to the NAM on Oct. 9 at its annual meeting in Washington, D.C.
Membership in the NAM, considered one of the highest honours in the fields of health and medicine, recognizes individuals for outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. The NAM’s members come from a variety of backgrounds, including health care, law, engineering, social sciences and the humanities.
Carabin is part of a very select group of international experts to receive this honour. In 2023, the NAM elected 100 new members, of which only 10 are from outside the U.S. This brings the NAM’s total membership to over 2,000, of which only 198 are from outside the U.S. Carabin is one of only 21 Canadians and five Quebecers to be elected to the NAM, and the first person from Université de Montréal.
Carabin has worked tirelessly to promote and put into practice the concept of One Health, which sees the health of people, animals and the environment as intimately connected and interdependent. One Health is an integrated approach that relies on collaboration between experts from different disciplines to anticipate, prevent and resolve problems impacting the health of humans and ecosystems.
As Canada Research Chair in Epidemiology and One Health, Carabin is trying to better understand and limit the harm caused by zoonotic diseases, infectious diseases that are transmitted from animals to humans or vice versa. Guided by the One Health perspective, she investigates the behavioural, sociodemographic, environmental and biological factors that influence zoonotic diseases with a view to designing effective prevention programs.
Carabin called her election to the NAM “extraordinary” because it demonstrates that the Academy now recognizes the importance of adopting a global approach to health that considers more than just the human dimension. “This recognition will help bring the One Health approach to a wider audience,” she said.
About the U.S. National Academy of Medicine
Founded under the name Institute of Medicine by the National Academy of Sciences in 1970, the National Academy of Medicine pronounces on key issues in public health and medicine and encourages action across these sectors. It works alongside the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering to provide independent, objective analysis and advice, and to conduct other activities aimed at solving complex problems and informing public policy decisions.