Dr Bernard Pécoul led the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) from its foundation in 2003 until 2022. Under his guidance, DNDi – a not-for-profit research and development organization – with hundreds of public and private partners, has delivered twelve new treatments for six deadly diseases. It has developed a robust portfolio of projects spanning from discovery to implementation for sleeping sickness, leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, filaria, mycetoma, HIV, hepatitis C, and COVID-19.
After stepping down from his position of Executive Director of the organization in September 2022, Dr Pécoul remains one of the major stakeholders of DNDi and lifelong advocate for better access to medicines.
Prior to DNDi, Dr Pécoul was Director of the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Campaign for Access to Essential Medicines from 1998 to 2003, a position he took on after that of Executive Director of MSF-France. While working with MSF, Dr Pécoul carried out field missions in Africa, Latin America, and Asia. In 1988, he co-founded Epicentre, an MSF-affiliated NGO specialized in epidemiology.
After obtaining his medical degree at the University of Clermont-Ferrand, France, Dr Pécoul earned a master’s degree in public health at Tulane University, USA. In 2012, he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws Degree by the University of Dundee, UK. In 2020, Dr Pécoul was awarded the Prince Mahidol Award in the field of public health by the Prince Mahidol Award Foundation, Thailand.
Dr Pécoul is member of the Joint Coordination Board of the Special Programme for Tropical Disease Research (WHO/TDR) and a former board member of UNITAID’s Medicines Patent Pool.
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