The Commission has mobilised another €122 million from its research and innovation programme, Horizon 2020, for urgently needed research into the coronavirus. The new call for expressions of interest contributes to the Commission's €1.4 billion pledge to the Coronavirus Global Response initiative, launched by President Ursula von der Leyen on 4 May 2020.
The new call is the newest addition to a range of EU-funded research and innovation actions to fight the coronavirus which complements earlier actions to develop diagnostics, treatments and vaccines by strengthening capacity to manufacture and deploying available solutions in order to address the needs. It will also improve understanding of the behavioural and socio-economic impacts of the epidemic.
The projects funded under this call should repurpose manufacturing for rapid production of medical supplies and equipment needed for testing, treatment and prevention, as well as develop medical technologies and digital tools to improve detection, surveillance and patients care. Europe, and the world, urgently need innovative solutions to mitigate the outbreak, and to better care for patients, survivors, vulnerable groups, frontline health care staff and their communities. New research will learn from large groups of patients (cohorts) across Europe and better understanding of the behavioural and socio-economic impacts of the coronavirus epidemic could help improve treatment and prevention strategies.
The deadline for submission is 11 June 2020.
The new solutions need to be available and affordable for all, in line with the principles of the Coronavirus Global Response. For this purpose, the Commission will include rapid data-sharing clauses in grant agreements, resulting from this new call, to ensure that findings and outcomes can be put to use immediately.
Five areas for budgets distribution
The new call will cover five areas with the following indicative budgets:
- Repurposing of manufacturing for vital medical supplies and equipment (€23 million)
- Medical technologies, Digital tools and Artificial Intelligence analytics to improve surveillance and care at high Technology Readiness Levels (€56 million)
- Behavioural, social and economic impacts of the outbreak responses (€20 million)
- Pan-European COVID-19 cohorts (€20 million)
- Collaboration of existing EU and international cohorts of relevance to COVID-19 (€3 million)
Previous COVID19 calls
This new special call under Horizon 2020 complements earlier actions to support 18 projects with €48.2 million to develop diagnostics, treatments, vaccines and preparedness for epidemics, as well as the €117 million invested in 8 projects on diagnostics and treatments through the Innovative Medicines Initiative, and measures to support innovative ideas through the European Innovation Council. It implements Action 3 of the ERAvsCorona Action Plan, a working document resulting from dialogues between the Commission services and national institutions.