DURABLE PROJECT – Improving Europe preparedness and readiness to pandemics
The increased frequency and complexity of infectious diseases pose health threats that require a unified, coordinated, fast, reliable and effective response. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown the critical importance of scientific research when responding to an emerging disease, with involvement of research and diagnostic laboratories across multiple disciplines and with a range of specific areas of expertise.
To be better prepared to anticipate and address jointly the ongoing and increasing risks we have established DURABLE (Delivering a Unified Research Alliance of Biomedical and public health Laboratories against Epidemics), a unique multidisciplinary consortium of research and public health laboratories across Europe with complementary expertise, which brings together the key players in emerging disease research, and translation of research findings into evidence DURABLE is funded with 25 million euros under the EU4Health programme. It will provide rapid and high-quality scientific information to support the EU in preparing for and responding to cross-border health threats and assessing the impact of medical countermeasures.
DURABLE will complement existing networks, including those under the coordination of ECDC to meet future challenges, avoid duplication of efforts and maximising EU efforts with its integrating approach. DURABLE will promote data exchange and inform decision making at a global level, with an established network of global contacts and experts providing high-level advice and oversight.
The kick-off meeting of DURABLE, held in Paris (Feb. 28th – Mar. 1st) in the presence of Dr Wolfgang Phillip, Deputy Director General of HERA, was the first of many occasions during which researchers and experts will get together and meet European Institutions in a one-health approach to address the barriers of better preparedness through research and provide real-time scientific data and integrated analyses to HERA. .
DURABLE Coordinator Dr. Jean-Claude Manuguerra (Institut Pasteur, FR) commented: “Our network DURABLE represents an important step in improving Europe preparedness and readiness to pandemic and other large-scale health threats”. Co-Coordinator Dr. Marion Koopmans (Erasmus Medical Center, NL) further highlighted that “DURABLE will be uniquely positioned to support HERA in responding to future health emergencies, by providing timely scientific intelligence and by translating them into operational recommendations”.
Ultimately, DURABLE will be a one-stop shop for diagnostics, research, preparedness and response to current and future health threats for the benefit of citizens in the EU and worldwide.