New Year 2023 address by the Director of ANRS | Emerging Infectious Diseases

09 January 2023

2022 was the year of consolidation for ANRS | Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Firstly, our agency has continued to develop all of its activities centred around the fight against HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis, STIs and tuberculosis. The projects we support bring hope and new insights into the challenges of tomorrow: HIV vaccine, elimination of hepatitis C, ability to cure hepatitis B, prevention of STIs, interventional and community-based research, and so many more...

Furthermore, our agency has now fully entered the phase of anticipation and preparedness for future health crises. Starting at national level with its contribution to France’s Emerging Infectious Diseases–Nuclear, Radiological, Biological and Chemical Acceleration Strategy (MIE-NRBC) in close collaboration with the Prime Minister's departments (General Secretariat for Investment) and the Ministries of Research and Health. Our agency is fully responsible for the operational management, under the aegis of Inserm, of the Priority Research and Resources Programme (PEPR) dedicated to emerging infectious diseases. Then, at European level, through ongoing collaborations with our many partners, and also through the coordination of BE READY, a project whose objective is to develop the European scientific agenda for preparedness for epidemic crises together with 24 European organisations and public institutions. And finally at international level, with the reinforcement of our collaborations during emergences (Mpox) and re-emergences (Ebola), as well as the extension of the agency's international network, with our partners in the countries and in conjunction with the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, Inserm, the National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD), Institut Pasteur, the universities and other French research institutions.

In addition to strengthening preparedness, we have also reinforced our internal crisis response system and have demonstrated its efficacy in the face of new epidemic challenges, notably Mpox, by launching emergency calls for proposals, by contributing to the development of a core protocol in collaboration with the WHO, and by participating in a first international clinical trial. All challenges taken up by ANRS │ Emerging Infectious Diseases, whose teachings provide insights for future crises.

Convinced that effective preparedness requires a fully integrated approach, we have continued to strengthen links with our historical partners, particularly civil society, and have systematised the adoption of a cross-cutting One Health approach in conjunction with animal and ecosystem health stakeholders. More than ever, ANRS │ Emerging Infectious Diseases is the agency for all researchers, attentive to the scientific community and to its projects.

In order to conduct these different activities simultaneously and take a sustainable structuring approach, we have adapted the agency's internal organisation and reinforced the teams and procedures, for both our operations and the funding of projects. Our location in the heart of the PariSanté Campus, a French spearhead dedicated to innovation in health and particularly digital health, is more than ever a development asset.

We at ANRS │ Emerging Infectious Diseases are ready for the year ahead and our teams are fully committed to working towards our shared vision: that of a world free of HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis, STIs and tuberculosis, and one in which emerging infectious diseases no longer pose a threat.

On behalf of the entire agency, I would like to wish you a very Happy New Year in the continuation of our collective commitment to understanding, preventing and controlling epidemics.