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With the improvement in the epidemiological situation, the Confederation’s Scientific Task Force (TFS) will adapt its system. According to FOPH, this group of experts, formed by the Federal Council in late March 2020, will however remain “flexible and accountable”.

The Federal Office of Public Health (OFSP) on Thursday confirmed keystone-ATS information from the French-speaking online media Heidi.news. He said that at present there is no fundamental change planned with the cooperation of TFS.

The current mandate has been assured to continue till further notice. Even if the epidemiological situation improves, important scientific questions still need to be clarified.

Valuable knowledge

Cooperation with TFS is necessary, underlining the office. His scientific knowledge is important and valuable. They are also included in FOPH’s reflections and proposals submitted to the Federal Council.

“We will obviously continue to provide scientific results to the authorities”, Task Force President Martin Ackerman, for his part, indicated in a position paper sent to Keystone-ATS.

He said discussions were underway to establish a mechanism that would make it possible to remain “as flexible as possible” in the event of a change in the status of epidemiology. Nothing has been decided yet. The form of this cooperation will also depend on the needs of the officers. Discussions are taking place within TFS itself, but also with FOPH.


Led by biologist Martin Ackerman, TFS has approximately 70 members who are not paid remuneration by the Confederation. Some have repeatedly publicly criticized the policy adopted by authorities during the Kovid-19 epidemic.

On the other hand, politicians tried to silence the TFS: In February, the Economic Commission of the National Council wanted to ban it from speaking publicly. Facing the resentment caused by this proposal, the commission retreated.

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In addition, the group has experienced a dozen departures since its creation, such as neurology researcher Dominique de Quervain from the University of Basel in April or epidemiologists Christian Althaus and Marcel Salathe shortly before. Some argued that they preferred to return to their sheep, especially research.

“Laziness” in the air

On the Heidi.news website, Professor Didier Trono, head of the Virology and Genetics Laboratory at EPFL and a member of TFS, points out that some scientists may develop a “form of exhaustion” after the 15-month existence of TFS.

According to him, this form should not be maintained at all costs. “We did not become members for entertainment. We did this for service, not for making a career in politics or media. Even though sometimes, we reduce the blows,” he continued.

Yet according to the virologist, “It is scientists and doctors who have probably succeeded in establishing trust with the public (…)

This article was published automatically. Source: ATS

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