COVID-19 in Resource-Limited Countries: ANRS to Launch Flash Call

07 April 2020
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In order to provide urgent support for research into COVID-19 in resource-limited countries, the French Agency for Research on AIDS and Viral Hepatitis (ANRS) is launching on Wednesday April 1, 2020 an exceptional call for proposals (CFP). Four million euros will be available for research projects conducted in resource-limited countries submitted by Monday April 13, 11.59 p.m., which is the deadline for this accelerated CFP. The projects submitted must involve at least one research team based locally in association with at least one team based in France. 
The specific terms and conditions of this flash CFP can be consulted on APOGEE.

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Within the space of a few weeks, SARS-CoV-2 responsible for COVID-19 disease has gone from a localized epidemic to a pandemic and international public health emergency.

Based on current knowledge, there are no preventive vaccines, no means of biomedical prevention, and no specific treatments. International, national, and local strategies essentially consist of barrier measures, social distancing, face masks, confinement, variable testing and diagnostic procedures, and symptomatic treatment. Research in all its dimensions is therefore now an absolute priority, expressed at the highest political level both in France and internationally. France’s scientific response is coordinated by Inserm’s REACTing consortium (https://reacting.inserm.fr/) which launched an initial urgent CFP whose 20 selected projects were announced on March 10. The National Research Agency (ANR) also sprang into action to launch an accelerated-process CFP that closed on March 16. Finally, the Hospital Clinical Research Program (PHRC) closed a call for hospital proposals on March 17. These three funding processes only concern research projects conducted in France.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic has now taken hold of the resource-limited countries of Africa, Asia and South America – countries with weak healthcare systems and a major burden of other endemic health problems, starting with HIV/AIDS. It is likely that the application of measures to control COVID-19 will prove difficult in such regions. 

For ANRS Director François Dabis, "thanks to the expertise of its teams in infectious disease research in both high-resource and resource-limited countries, and thanks to the responsiveness of its evaluation procedures and to the experience acquired from past health crises (H1N1, Zika, Ebola), the Agency is ready to implement this specific call for projects, essential for the rapid launch of high-quality projects in resource-limited countries"
 

Press Contact: Séverine Ciancia - information@anrs.fr - @agenceANRS