Professor Benoît Vallet appointed Chairman of ANSES's Board of Administrators

Professor Benoît Vallet, Senior Counsellor at the French Court of Auditors, was appointed Chairman of ANSES's Board of Administrators by Presidential Decree dated 10 September 2020. He succeeds Luc Derepas. Benoît Vallet is an anaesthetist by training and was Director General for Health (DGS) from 2013 to 2018. He was recently involved in managing the response to COVID-19 and the national lockdown exit strategy, and is currently coordinating establishment of the WHO Academy in Lyon on the national level.

Professor Benoît Vallet was appointed Chairman of ANSES's Board of Administrators by Presidential Decree on 10 September 2020. He will be responsible for coordinating and leading the Board’s work. Besides Government representatives and Agency staff, the Board of Administrators is made up of representatives of the five colleges of the Grenelle environmental round table (State, associations, professional bodies, trade unions and inter-branch employers' organisations, and elected officials). The mandate of Chairman of ANSES's Board of Administrators is a non-executive unpaid position.

Benoît Vallet is a doctor of medicine specialising in anaesthesia and intensive care. He began his career at Lille University Hospital, first as senior registrar and then hospital practitioner. He obtained an authorisation to supervise research in 1995 and became a university professor-practitioner in 1998. In 2005, he was appointed head of the anaesthesia and intensive care unit at Lille University Hospital and then chaired the hospital’s Medical Commission from 2010 to 2013.

From 2013 onwards, his career turned towards the administration of public health policies with his appointment as Director General for Health, a position he held until 2018. At the same time, he served on the Executive Board of the World Health Organization (WHO) from 2015 to 2018. He was made Knight of the National Order of the Legion of Honour in 2016.

Since 2018, Benoît Vallet has been a Senior Counsellor at the French Court of Auditors (Cour des Comptes), and a member of the sixth chamber dedicated to social security, health and the medical-social sector. He is also an affiliate professor at Sciences Po. In September 2019, the Minister of Higher Education, Research & Innovation asked him to coordinate the Ministry's work to support establishment of the WHO Academy in Lyon.

In March 2020, he was assigned to the Paris Public Hospital System (AP-HP) to conduct an audit of hospitals in the Grand Est, a region heavily affected by COVID-19. Then, in mid-April, he contributed to the national lockdown exit strategy coordinated by Jean Castex. On 1 July 2020, he was seconded from the Court of Auditors to coordinate the technical and scientific aspects of establishing the WHO Academy in Lyon, on behalf of the Ministries of Higher Education, Research & Innovation, Health, and Foreign Affairs.

Benoît Vallet is recognised for his knowledge of general public health issues, whether national, European or global. During the hearings for his appointment as Chairman of the Board of Administrators, he underlined the diversity of the issues addressed by ANSES and the importance of opening the Board to civil society, stating: "When presenting its strategy in 2019, ANSES adopted the motto 'Investigate, evaluate, protect'. I intend to honour this motto and ensure that it is respected."

Photo © E. Lombard – Cour des comptes