World Health Organization (WHO): R&D Blueprint and COVID-19
The current COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented, but the
global response draws on the lessons learned from other
disease outbreaks over the past several decades.
As part of WHO's response, the R&D Blueprint was activated
to accelerate diagnostics, vaccines and therapeutics for
this novel coronavirus. The Blueprint aims to improve
coordination between scientists and global health
professionals, accelerate the research and development
process, and develop new norms and standards to learn from
and improve upon the global response.
On 30 January 2020, following the recommendations of the
Emergency Committee, the WHO Director-General declared that
the outbreak constitutes a Public Health Emergency of
International Concern (PHEIC).
World scientists on COVID-19 then met at the World Health
Organization's Geneva headquarters on 11-12 February 2020 to
assess the current level of knowledge about the new virus,
agree on critical research questions that need to be
answered urgently, and to find ways to work together to
accelerate and fund priority research to curtail this
outbreak and prepare for those in the future.
The discussion led to an agreement on two main goals. The
first was to accelerate innovative research to help contain
the spread of the epidemic and facilitate care for those
affected. The second was to support research priorities that
contribute to global research platforms in hopes of learning
from the current pandemic response to better prepare for the
next unforeseen epidemic.
Building on the response to recent outbreaks of Ebola virus
disease, SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, the R&D Blueprint has
facilitated a coordinated and accelerated response to
COVID-19, including an unprecedented program to develop a
vaccine, research into potential pharmaceutical treatments
and strengthened channels for information sharing between
WHO is bringing the world’s scientists and global health
professionals together to accelerate the research and
development process, and develop new norms and standards to
contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic and help care
for those affected.
The solidarity of all countries will be essential to ensure
equitable access to COVID-19 health products.
WHO is gathering the latest international multilingual
scientific findings and knowledge on COVID-19. The global
literature cited in the WHO COVID-19 database is updated
daily (Monday through Friday) from searches of bibliographic
databases, hand searching, and the addition of other
expert-referred scientific articles. This database
represents a comprehensive multilingual source of current
literature on the topic. While it may not be exhaustive, new
research is added regularly.
Corona Accelerated R&D in Europe (CARE)
The Corona Accelerated R&D in Europe (CARE) consortium is a
coalition of 37 globally renowned academic institutions,
pharmaceutical companies and non-profit research
organizations who have committed to rapidly and efficiently
address this emergent health threat, and the main objectives
are: the development of therapeutics
to provide an emergency response towards the current
COVID-19 pandemic by drug repositioning and
to address the current and/or future coronavirus
outbreaks by broad-spectrum small-molecule drug
discovery and/or virus-neutralizing antibody discovery.
With this reactive response, the CARE consortium is
dedicated to win the fight against coronavirus.