Veterinary Emergency Response Unit (VERU)
India is one of the most disaster prone countries in the world, suffering over 430 major disasters in the last thirty years, affecting an estimated 1.5 billion people.
Establishing VERU in India
In 2009, following the Kosi river flood in north Bihar, and frequently occurring major disasters in India: the Bihar Veterinary College, with the support of World Animal Protection, initiated India’s first Veterinary Emergency Response Unit (VERU).
Following success in Bihar, VERU’s have been established in five key regional hubs in India:
- North - Palampur,
- South - Chennai,
- West - Anand,
- East - Guwahati and
- Central - Jabalpur, with an additional unit in Patna.
We have also successfully introduced VERU’s in Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Colombia, Thailand and Myanmar.
Preparing Veterinarians for emergency response
The Veterinary Emergency Response Units (VERU) located in key veterinary colleges in India, deliver internationally recognized training and lectures, both theoretical and practical, to final year veterinary students. The program is supported by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and World Animal Protection. Upon completion; the students emerge with a VERU certificate, accredited by the NDMA and World Animal Protection.
Students learn all aspects of veterinary care needed to quickly respond to protect animals in emergencies and disasters.
While preparing veterinarians to support vulnerable communities, who rely on animals for their livelihoods and for companionship, in disaster preparedness. VERU’s also work effectively alongside government partners and humanitarian NGOs in major emergency response situations.