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Professor Peter Piot appointed as special advisor to President of European Commission

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The European Commission has announced the appointment of Professor Peter Piot, Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), to the post of special advisor to the President of the European Commission, Ursula Von der Leyen, on the response to the coronavirus and COVID-19.

In this role, he will advise the Commission in supporting and steering research and innovation in the global fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

President von der Leyen said: “We are committed to winning the fight against the coronavirus, and we need to base our efforts on the best advice of our top experts. Professor Piot’s invaluable experience will help guide our actions to accelerate the development and deployment of vaccines, diagnostics and treatments to tackle the coronavirus, and to develop a strategy to prepare us for any future epidemics.”

Professor Piot, Director of LSHTM and Handa Professor of Global Health, co-discovered the Ebola virus in Zaire in 1976 and also led pioneering research on HIV-AIDS, women’s health and infectious diseases, mostly in Africa. He was the founding Executive Director of UNAIDS and Under Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1995 until 2008.

Professor Piot is also a member of the scientific advisory panel that provides the Commission with recommendations on response to the COVID-19 pandemic; including policy measures for addressing its long-term consequences.

Professor Piot’s message for the Coronavirus Global Response initiative on 4 May:

COVID-19 Response Fund

There cannot be any complacency as to the need for global action.

With your help, we can plug critical gaps in the understanding of COVID-19. This will support global response efforts and help to save lives around the world.